Mirror reads

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Mirror reads
Spiegeliest, Darwin, Australia

Spiegeliest, Darwin, Australia

Order : Rockers (Coraciiformes)
Family : Kingfishers (Alcedinidae)
Subfamily : Lieste (Halcyoninae)
Genre : Todiramphus ( Todiramphus )
Type : Mirror reads
Scientific name
Todiramphus macleayi
( Jardine & Selby , 1830)
Mirroriest, Daintree, Australia
Mirror reads in flight
Mirror with fish, Kakadu National Park

The mirrored liest ( Todiramphus macleayii ) is a species of kingfishers that is native to Australia and Papua New Guinea. Several subspecies are distinguished.

The stock situation of the Spiegeliest was classified in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species in 2016 as “ Least Concern (LC) ” = “not endangered”.


The head of the 20 cm long and 39 g heavy mirror nest is mostly royal blue in color, but has a wide black eye stripe and a white spot on the forehead. The eyes are dark brown. The male has a white collar that the female lacks. The top is colored royal blue with a turquoise back. The tail is colored blue on top and black to dark gray on the underside. A white wing spot can be seen in flight. The black beak has a pink stripe at the bottom.

The eastern subspecies Todiramphus macleayii incincta has a greener back and a smaller wing spot.

Despite the apparently conspicuous plumage, the mirror liest can hardly be made out in its natural habitat, as its plumage is much less conspicuous against the green, gray and brown tones of a tropical forest.

Possible confusion

The distinctive white forehead spot is one of the features that distinguishes the Spiegeliest from most other Australian kingfishers. It can only be found comparable with the mangrove dwarf fisherman. However, this is significantly smaller and is colored differently on the neck. Due to the dark face mask, there are also possibilities of confusion with the Halsbandliest , the Götzenliest and the Rotbürzelliest .

However, the neck band and idol are predominantly green-olive on the upper side of the body and the red rump has a red-orange rump. The females of the Spiegeliest occasionally have isabel-colored flanks and resemble the Götzenliest. The nestlings of the mirror test are also hardly difficult to distinguish from the collar reader. The clearest distinguishing feature of the nestlings is the blue part of the mirrored liest. Nestlings of the Halsbandliest, on the other hand, have an olive-colored parting.


The mirror liest occurs with two subspecies in the tropical and subtropical parts of Australia: The nominate form is represented in the top end . The distribution area of ​​the subspecies T. m. Incancta stretches from Cape York to the Macleya River in New South Wales . He prefers to stay in open hardwood forests along watercourses, swamps and billabongs . Most of the populations are resident birds , some of which migrate to New Guinea in southeastern Queensland and northeastern New South Wales . The subspecies T. m. Lives in New Guinea and New Britain . Elisabeth . This occurs there at altitudes of 1,600 meters.


Mirrors usually live in pairs and defend a territory that, according to current knowledge, they will occupy for several years. They are hide hunters who lie in wait for prey from a vantage point.

The food of the mirror nest consists of beetles , spiders , grasshoppers , worms , as well as small lizards and frogs . The prey is hunted from a hide during the day and killed by hitting a branch.


The mirrored nest breeds in tree hollows, self-dug burrows in the steep walls of clay or solid sand, or in the roots of fallen trees. He often uses termite nests in trees 4 to 12 meters above the ground. Both breeding birds help with the incubation of three to four eggs and with the rearing of the chicks. The incubation period is 18 days and the nestling period is 28 days.


  • C. Hilary Fry , Kathie Fry, Alan Harris: Kingfishers, Bee-Eaters, & Rollers. Princeton, New Jersey 1992, 1999, ISBN 0-691-04879-7 .
  • Ronald Strahan: Cuckoos, Nightbirds & Kingfishers of Australia . Angus & Robertson, Sydney 1994, ISBN 0-207-18522-0 .

Web links

Commons : Mirrored  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Single receipts

  1. Todiramphus macleayii in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016.1. Posted by: BirdLife International, 2016. Retrieved October 3, 2017.
  2. ^ Strahan: Cuckoos, Nightbirds & Kingfishers of Australia . P. 144.
  3. ^ A b C. Hilary Fry, Kathie Fry, Alan Harris: Kingfishers, Bee-Eaters, & Rollers . P. 166
  4. ^ C. Hilary Fry, Kathie Fry, Alan Harris: Kingfishers, Bee-Eaters, & Rollers . P. 167