Black fantail – Piwakawaka

Carving: Black fantail

Date: 2018

Location: SOLD. If interested in commissioning a similar piece, send me an email.

THE CARVING: A black Fantail. Carved from New Zealand Kauri. Eyes are onyx, legs cast metal and painted with artist acrylics.

Not common in the wild and not a common carving of mine as well.  Not ‘just’ a simply black fantail, more correctly a dark morph, with dark brown/black body, dark grey head and black fan. I really like the this colouring. The black fantail and notably the sooty albatross seem to me be ‘cool’, wearing the feather equivalent of a black leather jacket.

Set upon found wood.

Mounts to the wall with a french cleat (supplied)

The birds

THE BIRD: Endemic to New Zealand. Black fantails are mainly black, with black-brown over the rump, belly and flight feathers, and occasionally have a white spot over each ear.

Note that black morph fantails never have white on their tail feathers. Juvenile black fantails tend to be more dark brown than black. Black fantails are rare in the North Island, and make up less than 5% of individuals across the South Island.


Life size. Wall mounted. Approximately 390mm high x 180mm wide x 200mm out from wall.