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22 cms (8Â¾ in)
Female: duller. Immature: duller, less blue; pale wing-stripe in flight.
Some individuals have an orange patch on the belly.
Some refer to 2 subspecies; petrophila in Western Australia and zietzi in South Australia. Zietzi has a darker blue frontal band.
They are only found on coastlines and offshore rocky islands. It frequents coastal dunes, mangroves, saline swamps and rocky islets. Rarely seen more than a few hundred metres from the sea.
They nest in crevices in low cliff, rockface or overhang, mostly on small islands. Their clutch contains 3 to 6 eggs, with incubation taking between 18 and 21 days. Only the hen incubates. Young are independent in 4-5 weeks.
They will sometimes double brood, but the second nest often fails due to excess heat.
Its diet consists of seeds and fruits of grasses, shrubs and succulent plants.
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