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Shining Flycatcher - BirdForum Opus

Male M. a. melvillensis
Photo © by firecrest15
Lee Point, Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia, 31 October 2017
Myiagra alecto


Female M. a. melvillensis
Photo © by firecrest15
Lee Point, Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia, 31 October 2017

17–19 cm (6¾-7½ in)

  • iridescent bluish-black overall plumage
  • Slate blue bill (occasionally has a black tip)
  • Dark brown iris


  • Shiny bluish-black crown, sides of face and nape
  • Rufous-chestnut upperparts
  • White underparts

Juvenile is like female, but with breast and belly variably washed with rufous-buff.


South-east Asia: Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea


Juvenile M. a. chalybeocephala
Photo © by Joseph Morlan
Maur Village, East Sepik, Papua New Guinea, 13 September 2019


There are 7 subspecies[1]:

  • M. a. alecto:
  • M. a. longirostris:
  • Tanimbar Islands (Arafura Sea)
  • M. a. chalybeocephala:
  • New Guinea, western Papuan islands and Bismarck Archipelago
  • M. a. manumudari:
  • Manam Islands (New Guinea)
  • M. a. wardelli:
  • Trans-Fly of south-eastern New Guinea, Torres Strait, and northern, east Queensland south to Moreton Bay
  • M. a. lucida:
  • Louisiade Archipelago and D'Entrecasteaux Archipelago
  • M. a. melvillensis:
  • King Sound (West Australia) to Arnhem Land and north-western Queensland


Swamp forests and forest edges. Mangroves and vegetation along the sides of streams.



Their main diet consists of insects with the addition of some fruit, mollusks and crustaceans.


Nest is a deep tightly woven cup of plant fibers and spider webbing, decorated with lichen and bark flakes. Clutch is 2-3 whitish eggs variably spotted with gray or lavender.


Includes low frog-like croaking and a shrill rising trills.




  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2019. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Gregory, P. (2019). Shining Flycatcher (Myiagra alecto). 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 https://www.hbw.com/node/59264 on 1 November 2019).
  3. Gregory, P. (2017) Birds of New Guinea, Including Bismarck Archipelago and Boughainville. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.

Recommended Citation

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