Superb Lyrebird

Menura novaehollandiae

A Pheasant-like Songbird

Menura novaehollandiae, the Superb Lyrebird, is a medium-sized lyrebird that has a peculiar way of finding songs to sing. It actually imitates songs it hears in nature. In the BBC documentary featured above, you can see the superb lyrebird mimicking the sounds of a camera shutter and a car alarm.


Polygamous males have long elegant tails they use in elaborate courtship displays whereby the tail is fanned toward the head, forming a silvery white canopy. After mating, the females build a domed nest to lay a single egg.

Fun Facts

Lyrebirds have been in Australia for over 15 million years.
The Superb Lyrebird is on the Australian ten cent coin.

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Written by Rob Nelson

Rob is an ecologist from the University of Hawaii. He is the co-creator and director of Untamed Science. His goal is to create videos and content that are entertaining, accurate, and educational. When he's not making science content, he races whitewater kayaks and works on Stone Age Man.

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