birding-aus Juvenile Honeyeaters

Subject: birding-aus Juvenile Honeyeaters
Date: Sat, 11 Sep 1999 16:21:10 +0800

I work at the Argyle Diamond mine in the NE Kimberley of Western Australia
and I maintain the bird list for the area which is currently 203 species
(115 were found in the 1983 environmental survey) of which I have
sufficient evidence of 59 species breeding.

Today I had the chance to visit an area near a spring and I observed a
juvenile (brown with yellow gape and facial patch) Banded Honeyeater and a
juvenile (brown headed, no black, yellow gape) White-throated Honeyeater.
This morning I observed a juvenile (yellow bill and gape) Grey-fronted
Honeyeater which I have recorded breeding many times, but I haven't
confirmed records for the first two species.  There have also been an
influx of Brown Honeyeaters outside my office in the past week including
about 33% to 50% juveniles, and I have a number of confirmed breeding
records for this species.  By confirmed breeding I usually mean nests,
fledglings, obvious carrying of food / nest material, checking / entering
nesting hollows, feeding of juveniles, etc.

I estimate that all the juveniles would have fledged in the past 4 weeks.
The Banded Honeyeater was the first juvenile I have seen of this species,
and the only Banded Honeyeater that I definitely saw during my survey
today, although I possibly saw an adult fly through earlier.  The juvenile
was foraging in a eucalypt tree.  There were about 20 White-throated
Honeyeaters with one or two juveniles.  The time was the middle of the day
which was hot (39 degrees) and they were bathing or else very close to a
pool of water.  The Grey-fronted Honeyeater is resident so I feel certain
that this would have fledged in late August or possibly very early
September as I located it by its begging call although I observed it
feeding itself from a flower.  The Brown Honeyeaters are resident but with
several trees profusely flowering there has been a large increase in
numbers about a week ago.

My question is how likely (0 to 100%) would the juvenile honeyeaters be to
have bred in the close vicinity of my sightings?  Would I be justified in
stating that Banded Honeyeater and White-throated Honeyeater breed in the
vicinity based on this evidence?

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