Azure-crested flycatcher

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Azure-crested flycatcher
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Monarchidae
Genus: Myiagra
Species: M. azureocapilla
Binomial name
Myiagra azureocapilla
Layard, 1875
Male in threat-posture, Vidawa, Taveuni, Fiji Isles

The azure-crested flycatcher or blue-crested flycatcher (Myiagra azureocapilla) is a species of bird in the monarch flycatcher family Monarchidae. It is endemic to Fiji, where it is found on Taveuni.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests and subtropical or tropical moist montane forests.


The azure-crested flycatcher was first described in 1875 by ornithologist Edgar Leopold Layard, Administrator of the Government of the Colony of Fiji at the time.[2] Its specific epithet is derived from the Latin azureus 'blue', and capillus 'of the head'.[3] It is also commonly known as the blue-crested broadbill,[4] or the azure-crested flycatcher.

It is a member of a group of birds termed monarch flycatchers. This group is considered either as a subfamily Monarchinae, together with the fantails as part of the drongo family Dicruridae,[5] or as a family Monarchidae in its own right.[6] They are not closely related to their namesakes either, the Old World flycatchers of the family Muscicapidae; early molecular research in the late 1980s and early 1990s revealed the monarchs belong to a large group of mainly Australasian birds known as the Corvida parvorder comprising many tropical and Australian passerines.[7] More recently, the grouping has been refined somewhat as the monarchs have been classified in a 'Core corvine' group with the crows and ravens, shrikes, birds of paradise, fantails, drongos and mudnest builders.[8]

In 2016, two former subspecies of the azure-crested flycatcher were reclassified as a separate species, the chestnut-throated flycatcher.[9]


Measuring 14 cm (5.5 in) in length, the azure-crested Flycatcher is sexually dimorphic. The male has light blue crown with slate-blue upperparts, and white underparts. The female in brown above with greyish tinged cheeks and bluish tinged crown.[4] Unusually for the genus Myiagra the bill is bright orange instead of black.


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2016). "Myiagra azureocapilla". The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2016: e.T103711173A94121418. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T103711173A94121418.en. Retrieved 13 January 2018. 
  2. ^ Layard EL (October 1875). "Description of a new Flycatcher belonging to the Genus Myiagra, and Notes a some other Fijian Birds". Ibis. 17 (4): 434–36. doi:10.1111/j.1474-919X.1875.tb05993.x. 
  3. ^ Simpson DP (1979). Cassell's Latin Dictionary (5th ed.). London: Cassell Ltd. p. 883. ISBN 0-304-52257-0. 
  4. ^ a b Mercer, Robin (1967). A Field Guide to Fiji Birds. Suva: Government Press. p. 21. 
  5. ^ Christidis L, Boles WE (1994). The Taxonomy and Species of Birds of Australia and its Territories. Melbourne: RAOU. 
  6. ^ Christidis L, Boles WE (2008). Systematics and Taxonomy of Australian Birds. Canberra: CSIRO Publishing. p. 174. ISBN 978-0-643-06511-6. 
  7. ^ Sibley, Charles Gald & Ahlquist, Jon Edward (1990): Phylogeny and classification of birds. Yale University Press, New Haven, Conn.
  8. ^ Cracraft J, Barker FK, Braun M, Harshman J, Dyke GJ, Feinstein J, Stanley S, Cibois A, Schikler P, Beresford P, García-Moreno J, Sorenson MD, Yuri T, Mindell DP (2004). "Phylogenetic relationships among modern birds (Neornithes): toward an avian tree of life". In Cracraft J, Donoghue MJ. Assembling the tree of life. New York: Oxford Univ. Press. pp. 468–89. ISBN 0-19-517234-5. 
  9. ^ "Species Updates « IOC World Bird List". Retrieved 2016-11-01.