Spangled drongo (species: Dicrurus bracteatus) in Cataract NP (Gaia Guide)
Dicrurus bracteatus
Spangled drongo

©Charlie: Spangled Drongo in the Kimberley

©Alex Vail: Spangled Drongo with grasshopper prey at Lizard Island

©Alex Vail: Spangled Drongo with grasshopper prey at Lizard Island
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Passeriformes
Family Dicruridae
Genus Dicrurus
Species Dicrurus bracteatus
Status least concern



Distinguishing features

The Spangled Drongo has glossy black plumage with metallic sheen. It has a distinctive long forked tail and red eyes.


  • Up to 30 cm (Length of specimen)


  • Wingspan data is not yet available.



©Atlas of Living Australia: Australian distribution


The Spangled Drongo is an acrobatic flyer, enabling it to catch insects while on the wing.

Its basically black plumage is iridescent with blue and purple highlights. When it - seasonally - visits urban areas it is easily tamed by throwing small pieces of raw meat into the air, when it will accurately swoop and catch them mid-air.

The Spangled Drongo is a mimic, taking sounds that it hears and melding them into their own song.

Web resources


  • Simpson, K., N. Day and P. Trusler (1996). Field Guide to the Birds of Australia: Fifth Edition Penguin Books, Australia.