Bellbirds are sparrow-sized and named after their melodic song. The trans bird makes male and female mating calls but his female call is louder and more frequent than is usual.
Although a DNA test showed the bird as female, his feeding habits are more male as he moves in a defensive way to protect attractive sources of nectar. He has the dark feathers of a male, but also a white stripe of the female on one cheek.
Ben Bell, an ornithologist from Wellington’s Victoria University, said the bird’s transgender characteristics were ‘unusual’ and ‘could be due to a hormonal imbalance’.