I reckon all your honeyeaters are down here in Southern Vic!
What I observed last weekend, were 5 different types of honeyeater
(including Fuscous and Yellow-tufted HE's...both uncommon down here)
ground feeding on insects. Some in burnt out sections of the Brisbane
Ranges and others in grassy roadsides.
I'm thinking that instead of Honeyeaters following flowering, they are
migrating to areas of abundant insects. All the new regrowth from last
years fires in the Brisbane Ranges are obviously attracting insects and
the honeyeaters are following the food supply.
I'm intrigued to know why birds are moving from the Mallee and
Box-Ironbark areas though??? Have insect numbers dropped up there? Are
there adverse conditions that are forcing birds out of these areas??? Its
funny that you mentioned Wychitella since i thought the mix of birds that
are appearing down here, seem to be the same mix that are found in the
Wychitella area. Both Yellow-plumed and Fuscous Honeyeaters were
virtually unrecorded throughout the Brisbane Ranges, but this winter
Fuscous Honeyeaters are abundant, with occassional Yellow-plumed and more
than usual Yellow-tufted sightings. There has even been records of
Red-capped Robin from the area.
This year would make a good study on the movement of insectivorous birds.
It would be great to hear from other birding-aus'ers on any unusual
honeyeater/insectivorous sightings from VIC/ACT and Southern NSW, so we
could peice together whats going on here.
"simon starr" <>
19/07/2007 03:49 PM
"BA email" <>
Re: [Birding-Aus] White-fronted Honeyeater: Happy hour this weekend
Living close to their normal range I can't help much with records of
White-Fronted Honeyeaters in distant places, but I know that they are
mobile as I've had 4 or 5 pass through my garden which is just a small
of "scrub" in the middle of agricultural land ( that's many more sightings
of White-fronts than of many other commoner Honeyeaters found in nearby
But I thought it relevant to relate my birding experiences yesterday when
spent the morning looking for Swift Parrots in the Moliagul/Wehla/Kingower
area of central Vic, before giving up and heading north to the mallee of
Basically there were no nectivorous birds present. I visited a few spots
where Swifties are regular, and Honeyeaters and Lorikeets usually abound
especially this time of year, and nothing. I found a flock of
Brown-headed, a few Noisy Miners and that was it.
Not a single Fuscous, Black-chinned,Yellow-tufted, Red Wattlebird,
Lorikeet, nothing !!! It was quite bizarre. There were however mixed
flocks of smaller birds such as Thornbills and Robins etc which had moved
to places I've never seen them, presumably because of the lack of
competition. It helps to explain the various reports on Birdline Victoria
of unusual numbers of honeyeaters in other parts of the state ( come to
think of it there has been a White-fronted present at Newport lakes which
out of range).
The area has received good rains over the last 4 months or so, and things
are really responding but the trees are having a big rest and some
from flowering !.
By the days end I had found a few more honeyeaters, in the mallee and
the rocky hills. Flame heath is flowering well up at Wychitella and
attracting small numbers of Yellow-tufted, Tawny-crowned and White-fronted
Honeyeaters, plus an Eastern Spinebill. And I heard/saw plenty of Southern
Scrub-robins, so they seem to have come through the dry pretty well.