Malurus leucopterus, a species of passerine bird, belongs to the Maluridae family of Australasian wrens. It inhabits the drier regions of Central Australia, which stretches from Western Australia to central Queensland and South Australia. Like other fairywren species, this one exhibits distinct sexual dimorphism, and during the mating season, one or more males in a social group develop brilliantly coloured plumage. Smaller than the male, who has a bright-blue body, a black beak, and white wings in breeding plumage, the female is sandy-brown with light-blue tail feathers. Males who are sexually mature but younger are frequently the breeding males since they resemble females almost exactly.
A group of white-winged fairywrens in the spring and summer is led by an older, highly coloured male and includes smaller, less noticeable brown birds, many of whom are also males. There are three known subspecies. Aside from the subspecies found on the mainland, two more are located off the coast of Western Australia on Dirk Hartog Island and Barrow Island. Males from these islands have breeding plumage that is black rather than blue.
The white-winged fairywren mostly consumes insects, with tiny fruits and leaf buds as a supplement. Low bushes act as shelter for it in heathland and dry scrubland. It is a cooperative breeding species, and tiny flocks of birds defend and maintain territory all year long, much like other fairywrens. A socially monogamous partner and a number of helper birds who aid in rearing the young make up groups. These offspring are known as “helpers” because they have reached sexual maturity yet have stayed with their family for one or more years after fledging. The white-winged fairywren may be promiscuous and help raise the young from other couples, despite there being no genetic evidence to support this. The male wren exposes flower petals to female birds as part of his courting ritual.