Family Fantails (Rhipiduridae)


Natewa Silktail (Lamprolia klinesmithi)


French: Lamprolie de Vanua Levu German: Natewafächerschwanz Spanish: Monarca de Natewa

Lamprolia klinesmithi

E. P. Ramsay

, 1876,

Vanua Levu, Fiji


Until recently considered conspecific with L. victoriae, and clearly very closely related. Differs in its much smaller size (effect size for male wing −5.47, score 3); iridescent crown and breast feathers somewhat larger and flat vs smaller and with tips decurved, former creating a richer colour#R, latter a two-toned effect (3); ecologically different, being less a trunk-gleaner, more an aerial sallier in absence of Chestnut-throated Flycatcher (Myiagra castaneigularis) on the Natewa Peninsula#R (1); split recently proposed on molecular evidence#R. Type specimen collected by J. T. Kleinschmidt, and the specific name has often accordingly been emended to “kleinschmidti”; he was, however, known to many contemporaries by anglicized version “Klinesmith”, and this appears thrice in the original description, which nowhere mentions the German spelling, so original spelling was clearly intentional and must stand. Monotypic.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.

E Vanua Levu (Natewa Peninsula), in N Fiji.

Descriptive notes

c. 10 cm; 10–12·5 g. Very small, dumpy, strikingly iridescent black rhipidurid with conspicuous white rump and much of tail; tail short and rounded, wings rather rounded.... read more


Rather silent and poorly documented. Utters quiet raspy short notes.


Mature rainforest, including logged forest, and plantations close to intact forest.

Food and feeding

Diet consists of small arthropods and worms. Forages singly or in small flocks, and often active around dawn. May forage in leaf litter and... read more


Probably breeds at any time of year whenever conditions suitable. Nest with one egg found in early Sept; a juvenile seen early Sept, and... read more



Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. Restricted-range species: present in Fiji EBA. This newly split species is classified as Vulnerable because it has a small population and its numbers are... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Natewa Silktail (Lamprolia klinesmithi). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 16 December 2019).