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Wattled Brushturkey - BirdForum Opus

Alternative name: Wattled Scrub Turkey

Aepypodius arfakianus


38-46 cm. A dark, partridge-like bird.

  • Dark reddish-brown plumage
  • Bright reddish comb and neck wattle, duller outside breeding season
  • Bluish white (sometimes blue-grey) bare facial skin
  • Bluish grey to olive-brown legs
  • misoliensis with a blue comb, generally smaller than nominate and with duller plumage.

Females are smaller, are duller coloured on head and have only small wattles and reduced comb. Immatures are similar to adult females.


Endemic to the mountains of New Guinea, including Misool Island.
Uncommon to fairly common in its range.


Two subspecies recognized:

  • A. a. arfakianus in the mountains of New Guinea and Yapen Island
  • A. a. misoliensis in the mountains of Misool Island (off northwest New Guinea)


Found in montane forests, usually above 1000 m.
On Misool at lower altitudes.


Usually seen solitary or in pairs. Tends to fly up into trees when disturbed. Roosts in trees.


Feeds on fallen fruits and seeds. Takes probably also insects. Ingests small stones to help break down the food.


Breeding recorded in all months except July, August and November. Builds a steep-sided mound made of leaves and twigs, up to 350 cm wide and 200 cm high. Probably built by the male. The rotting material in the mound incubates the eggs. New Guinea Scrubfowl has been recorded to parasitize the mound.


Presumably a sedentary species.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2013. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.8., with updates to August 2013. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  1. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved July 2014)

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