Figbird (Sphecotheres viridis) - Flickr - Lip Kee (3)
Green Figbird (Sphecotheres viridis)
Scientific Classification
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Passeriformes
Family Oriolidae
Genus Sphecotheres

Sphecotheres or figbirds, is a genus of Old World orioles found in wooded habitats in Australia, Papua New Guinea and the Lesser Lesser Sundas. The three species have been considered conspecific, but today all major authorities consider them as separate species. The split is primarily based on differences in measurements and plumage, and on biogeography. Compared to the "typical" orioles of the genus Oriolus, the figbirds are more frugivorous (though they also take some small insects, nectar and seeds) and gregarious, even breeding in small, loose colonies (at least the Australasian figbird; nesting habits still unknown for the remaining). They are strongly sexually dimorphic, with males having olive-green upperparts, a black head, and (uniquely for the family) distinct bright red facial skin. Females are drab-colored, being dull brownish above, and white below with strong dark streaking. They have greyish facial skin, and a greyish-black bill.


Species in the genus Sphecotheres listed in taxonomic order:

Wetar Figbird (Finsch, 1898) (Sphecotheres hypoleucus)
Australasian Figbird (Vigors & Horsfield, 1827) (Sphecotheres vieilloti)
 Yellow Figbird (Sphecotheres (vieilloti) flaviventris)
 Green Figbird or Southern Figbird (Sphecotheres (vieilloti) vieilloti)
Green Figbird (Vieillot, 1816) (Sphecotheres viridis)
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