Fantail FAQs:

Q: Are fantails small insectivorous birds of Australasia?

A: Yes, and Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent belonging to the genus Rhipidura in the family Rhipiduridae.

Q: Was a fantail recently recognized as a fairy-flycatcher of family Stenostiridae and has been moved to its old genus Chelidorhynx?

A: Yes.

Q: Are fantails an Australasian family that has spread from as far as Samoa to northern India?

A: Yes.

Q: Are fantails strong fliers?

A: Yes, and some species can undertake long migrations, but the thicket fantails are very weak fliers, and need to alight regularly.

Q: Are fantails highly active birds, with several of the smaller species continuously on the move?

A: Yes, even when perched they continue to rock back and forth, spin 180° on the spot, wag their tail from side to side or fan and unfan it.

Q: Is a fantail restricted to a single island in the Bismarck Archipelago?

A: Yes, and the Kadavu fantail has a similarly restricted distribution in the Kadavu Group of Fiji.

Q: Are fantails often very bold around people and will approach them closely in order to capture insects flushed by them?

A: Yes.

Q: Are fantails typical for aerial insect eating birds?

A: Yes, and being flat and triangular.

Q: Are fantails territorial and aggressively defend their territories from conspecifics as well as other fantail species and other flycatchers?

A: Yes.

Q: Are fantails small bodied birds with long tails?

A: Yes, in some species the tail is longer than the body and in most the tail is longer than the wing.

Q: Are fantails tapered and have sacrificed speed for agility?

A: Yes, and making fantails highly efficient at catching insect prey.