Rainbow pitta: Article of the day for February 23, 20201 min read


The Mediadise Article of The Day for February 23, 2020 is: Rainbow pitta.
The rainbow pitta (Pitta iris) is a small passerine bird in the pitta family, Pittidae, endemic to northern Australia. The species is most closely related to the superb pitta of Manus Island. A colourful bird, it has a velvet black head with chestnut stripes above the eyes, olive green upper parts, black underparts, a bright red belly and an olive green tail. The rainbow pitta lives in the monsoon forests, as well as some drier eucalypt forests. As with other pittas, it is a secretive and shy bird. The diet consists mainly of insects, arthropods and small vertebrates. Pairs defend territories and breed during the rainy season, as this time of year provides the most food for nestlings. The female lays three to four eggs with blotches inside its large domed nest. Both parents defend the nest, incubate the eggs and feed the chicks. The species is common within its range, and is not threatened.

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