Basal Oscine and Acanthisitti Photo Albums

This album page provides image and text hyperlinks to galleries that display images of Basal Oscines and Acanthisitti (New Zealand Wrens) that belong to order Passeriformes, see Taxonomy note at the end of this page. In each photo album, a gallery features portraits of individual species that may include male, female, juvenile or immature birds photographed in various natural habitats And for some species, a supplementary gallery displays behaviours such as hunting, nesting, feeding, and mating.


Blue-faced Honeyeater (Entomyzon cyanotis) at Marian in the Mackay Region of Queensland

Are a large and diverse group of Australasian small to medium-sized bird species whose habitat includes forest, heathland, mangrove, urban and rural gardens.

Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus leggei) male perched at Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park in South Australia

Scrubwrens, thornbills and pardalotes occupy a variety of habitats including forests, grassland and shrubland. Fairy-wrens are small to very-small insectivores with cocked tails found in similar habits including heath.

Climacterida and Orthonychida


Spotted Catbird (Ailuroedus maculosus) in the rainforest near Lake Eacham, Atherton Tablelands

Bowerbirds and catbirds are medium to large-sized omnivorous birds found primarily in wet-forests and rainforests. Australasian babblers are medium-sized birds found in woodland and shrubland.

Rifleman (Acanthisitta chloris) male at Governors Bush track in Aoraki Mount Cook National Park

These are tiny birds found in forest and scrub. The Acanthisittidae family has four known species all endemic to New Zealand.

Acanthisitti and Basal Oscines Taxonomy

To help the presentation of my photo album collections, I adopt the higher-order taxonomy described in J Boyd’s Taxonomy in Flux Checklist. The figure shows a simplified taxonomy family tree relevant to the Acanthisitti and Basal Oscine photo album.

Passerines comprise three suborders: Acanthisitti (New Zealand Wrens), Tyranni (Suboscines) and Passeri (Oscines) placed in Passeriformes. Passeri then splits into four Basal Oscine parvorders before Corvida and Passerida.

Four Basal Oscine higher-order groups (parvorders) then branch off separately from Passeri before the split between the Corvida and Passerida.

Basal Oscines has ten families, arranged into four parvorders: Menurida, Climacterida, Meliphagida and Orthonychida. In Sibley and Monroe taxonomy, these are placed in superfamilies Menuroidea, Climacteroidea, Meliphagoidea and Orthonychoidea,

There are three photo albums:
(a) Meliphagida photo album part one displays Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae) with three subfamilies,
(b) Meliphagida photo album part two contains Australian Wrens (Maluridae) together with Gerygones and Allies (Pardalotidae),
(c) Orthonychida and Climacterida is the third album featuring Bowerbirds (Ptilonorhynchidae) and Australasian Babblers (Pomatostomidae).

Finally, a photo gallery displays one species from Acanthisitti (New Zealand Wrens).

New Zealand Wrens Gallery

New Zealand Wrens Notes

The species shown in the gallery is ‘Red List 2019’ assessed as ‘Least Concern’. Featured are male and female images of the South Island nominate subspecies. There are only two species in this Aves Order, both endemic to New Zealand.