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Mangrove Gerygone

Gerygone levigaster

The Mangrove Gerygone, known also as the Mangrove Warbler, is a small bird belonging to the Australian warbler family Acanthizidae. It is a dainty creature, typically 9-11 cm in length and weighing a mere 6 grams. Its plumage is a subtle grey on top, contrasting with a white throat, belly, flanks, and rump. A distinctive white eye stripe graces its face, while its bill and legs are a stark black, and the iris a deep red.

Identification Tips

To identify the Mangrove Gerygone, look for its rounded wings and the white eye stripe that stands out against its grey and white plumage. The subspecies vary slightly, with G. l. pallida being a touch browner above, and G. l. cantator slightly larger and heavier.

Habitat

This species is primarily found in mangrove forests, as well as forests and woodlands adjacent to mangroves. It is known to venture into nearby forests to feed, especially during the breeding season.

Distribution

The Mangrove Gerygone is distributed across coastal regions from Western Australia to north Queensland, with subspecies extending its range into southern New Guinea and from coastal Queensland to New South Wales.

Behaviour

In areas where it coexists with the Large-billed Gerygone, such as the Kimberley, it is displaced from mangroves and instead resides in scrubland dominated by paperbarks and acacia. The species is less inclined to catch prey mid-air compared to other gerygones, but it does participate in mixed-species feeding flocks.

Song & Calls

The song of the Mangrove Gerygone is described as "sweet, rich, tuneful," bearing resemblance to that of the Western Gerygone.

Breeding

Breeding occurs throughout the year, with a focus on spring-summer in eastern Australia and during the dry season in the north. The female is responsible for constructing the oval domed nest from materials such as roots, grass, spider webs, moss, seaweed, and bark, which hangs from mangroves. The nest will house two to three eggs, incubated for 14-17 days, with both parents tending to the chick for an additional 14-17 days post-hatching.

Similar Species

The Mangrove Gerygone may be confused with other members of the Gerygone genus, but its habitat preference for mangroves and distinct song can help differentiate it.

Diet and Feeding

Its diet consists of insects found in tree foliage, including beetles, grasshoppers, wasps, ants, and moths. The Mangrove Gerygone typically forages in the canopy but will also search among mangrove roots.

Conservation Status

The IUCN has classified the Mangrove Gerygone as Least Concern, although it has experienced some population declines due to mangrove clearances.

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Mangrove Gerygones on Birda

Photos
Sightings

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A photo of a Inland Thornbill (Acanthiza apicalis)

Inland Thornbill

Acanthiza apicalis
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