Species profile

Noisy Pitta

Noisy Pitta

Range and abundance

Noisy Pittas are found in rainforest, tropical and subtropical scrub and nearby eucalypt forest along the east coast of Australia, from Cape York Peninsula south to the NSW/Victoria border. They are locally common in areas of suitable habitat. Noisy Pittas descend from higher altitude forests to the lowlands during winter, and return to the mountains in summer.

Description

The Noisy Pitta is a colourful bird that has bright green wings with turquoise front edges and a green back. The breast, belly and throat are a soft straw yellow and the head and nape are black. The undertail-coverts are red and a bright blue wing patch is visible when it flies. The call is usually repeated twice and consists of a high-pitched sequence of three ascending notes, described as "walk-to-work".

Ecology

Noisy Pittas are active, ground-dwelling birds. Although usually quite secretive, they may be observed rummaging through leaf litter on the forest flood in search of insects and other invertebrates on which they feed. They are particularly fond of snails, including large (saucer-sized) rainforest snails. Pittas nest in a concealed location on the ground, usually on the downslope side of a large buttressed tree, keeping the nest dry during heavy rain. The female usually lays four eggs in early summer.

Threats

Habitat loss and fragmentation, possibly introduced predators.

 


What is AWC doing?

AWC conserves rainforest and wet sclerophyll forests on Brooklyn, Mount Zero-Taravale and Curramore sanctuaries. AWC uses prescribed burning to reduce the risk of wildfire, and implements weed control.

Did you know:

Noisy Pittas crack open snail shells on stone ‘anvils’ on the forest floor. A pile of shell fragments around a rock in suitable habitat can indicate the presence of this species.