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Fairy Bluebirds and Leafbirds: Irenidae

Common Iora (aegithina Tiphia): Species Accounts

Physical characteristics: The common iora ranges in length from 5.5 to 6 inches (13 to 17 centimeters), and has a weight that averages about a 0.5 ounces (13.5 grams). The females are olive-green on their upperparts, with dull yellow underparts, foreheads, and eyebrows, with olive-green crowns. The males have dark green to black upperparts, very bright yellow underparts, black wings with white bars, dark tails, and black crowns.

Geographic range: The common iora can be found throughout almost the entire Indian subcontinent, Sri Lanka, southern Yunnan and southwestern Guanxi in China, all of Myanmar, Indochina, and the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, and Palawan.

Habitat: The common iora dwells in open woodlands, secondary forests, gardens, orchards, mangroves, and beach forests.

Diet: Common ioras are omnivores, but have a diet consisting of arthropods which includes spiders, moths, caterpillars, and other similar insects that can be found on leaves. They also eat some fruit.

Behavior and reproduction: When they are not breeding, common ioras tend to travel in small flocks, or pairs, as they continually hunt for their food. Contact among the birds is made through vocalizing often. Their songs and whistles are both distinctive as well as pleasant.

The common iora is monogamous. The male has specific behaviors for courtship as described in the earlier section on the family of fairy bluebirds, leaping 3.3 to 6.6 feet (1 to 2 meters) above its perch, then gliding down with erect feathers, and taking on the appearance of a sphere-like shape. The nest is deep and cup-shaped, with a clutch of two to four eggs that are white with a pink tint and brown or purple-colored blotches.

Common ioras and people: The common iora provides insect control in fruit orchards by feeding on caterpillars and other harmful insects.

Conservation status: This species is not threatened. Due to the creation of gardens and orchards, it is most likely that the common iora has widened its habitat range. ∎

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceBirdsFairy Bluebirds and Leafbirds: Irenidae - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Fairy Bluebirds, Leafbirds, And People, Common Iora (aegithina Tiphia): Species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, CONSERVATION STATUS