Trying to identify a honeyeater

Subject: Trying to identify a honeyeater
From: "Andrew Billinghurst" <>
Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2001 15:30:52 +1000
On Saturday I was sitting at home in Gordon, rural Victoria (just 
east of Ballarat) and I saw a midsize bird fluttering outside the 
window.  At first glance, I thought that it was an azure kingfisher 
or the like due to the light chest colour and the general size.

On proper looking, I saw that it had a honeyeater beak, was black 
with a white chest.  I thought, "Great first time I have seen one of 
those" and went to get the bird books.  Went through and the prime 
candidate is a Pied Honeyeater from comparison.  On reading the 
description and habitat for pied honeyeater, doubt set in, was it 

[Some background, I am *not* an avid birdwatcher owning some bird 
books and enjoying identifying new species as my rejuvenated paddock 
now large garden (Oz natives) with numbers of banksias starting 
flowering.  I have quite a reasonable nomadic and sedentary bird 
population which includes about 5 other honeyeaters spp. that I can 
readily identify.  I am new to the list so please excuse any lack of 
known culture]

Now, for those who don't know where Gordon is, it is on the turnover 
to the divide (600m) between Ballarat and Melbourne, cold and wet 
winters, and this past week damp.  Not the habitat associated Pied 
Honeyeater.  I also perused the Victorian Bird Atlas and that really 
seemed to shut the door on the thought.

So I am seeking advice on what it may have been, or was it really one 
lost pied honeyeater.

* size and build, very much like azure kingfisher
* definite honeyeater beak, and I would have said very slightly 
towards curved.
* definite black body and the chest was definitely completely full 
white, which to me ruled out black honeyeater.
* didn't get a look at the bird at rest as it hovered around the 
window for 10-15 seconds before flying off to bushes, bird was a 1m 
from window at about 2m, and I was in total about 4m away, so the 
look that I got was close but brief

Would love some suggestions of other birds that I should rule in or 
out.  And NO it wasn't a deformed willy wagtail frankenstein 
construct (friend's suggestion and I did hit them! <g>) 

Thanks.  Regards Andrew
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