Honeyeaters still on the move in large numbers over Duffy - query

To: <>
Subject: Honeyeaters still on the move in large numbers over Duffy - query
From: "Philip Veerman" <>
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2012 14:13:05 +1000
Yes these things have been described for a long time and whilst the note from Denis is correct, it maybe helps to say that using spellings can help but particularly note that "chip, chip, chip" are 3 staccato sounds, whereas "mew, mew, mew" are each a slow sound (and of course neither is necessarily in 3s). Really it is just a matter of watching and listening for a while till you learn. The two sounds should not be confusable. Fortunately, apart from when other species join in, most of the time there will only be those two sounds. Often in mixed species migrating flocks you will have no idea which individual is calling.
Denis adds a good point that I hadn't really thought of and isn't often written (or I don't recall it) but I also think it is true that Red Wattlebirds, when migrating, ....... seldom call when migrating. I had about 40 go over my house yesterday.
-----Original Message-----From: Denis Wilson [ Sent: Friday, 20 April 2012 9:57 AM      To: casburnj
Cc: COG bird discussions     Subject: Re: [canberrabirds] Honeyeaters still on the move in large numbers over Duffy - query

Hi Jean

Generally, the Yellow-faces go "chip, chjp, chip" and the White-naped HEs go "mew, mew, mew".
Very different calls.

These calls are not necessarily the same as their regular calls when resident in their breeding and feeding grounds.
For example, when migrating the Yellow-faces do not make their longer descending trill call.

These links give you fairly standard calls, not what you will hear on migration routes.
In my experience, Red Wattlebirds, when migrating, gather in groups of up to 30 birds. They travel together, they seldom call when migrating. Very strange for birds which are so aggressive most of the rest of the year.

Hope that helps you.


Denis Wilson

On Fri, Apr 20, 2012 at 9:35 AM, casburnj <> wrote:

To my amazement – out to measure the rainfall and look for earthquake damage (none) – overhead out of the fog – hundreds of Yellow-faced Honeyeaters, and some larger birds that  I assume to be Red Wattlebirds.  I could not see any differences in smaller honeyeaters crossing as the light was not good, but by their voices, the sounds was varied.

Can someone please give me an idea of how to differentiate the sounds of Yellow-faced from White-naped Honeyeaters please?



Denis Wilson
"The Nature of Robertson"

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