The birds and the bees - nectar feeders

To: "Tim Dolby" <>, <>
Subject: The birds and the bees - nectar feeders
From: "Greg and Val Clancy" <>
Date: Tue, 13 Nov 2012 13:14:55 +1100
Musk Lorikeets returned to the Clarence Valley, north coast NSW, in late October after an absence of many months. Last week I had the four lorikeet species at home at Coutts Crossing - Rainbow, Scaly-breasted, Musk and Little. Maybe not large numbers but the flowering Silky Oaks and some eucalypts are keeping the lorikeets around. The Musk Lorikeet is irruptive in our area and probably travels from more temperate regions such as southern NSW and Victoria when nectar is scarce there.

Dr Greg. P. Clancy
Ecologist and Wildlife-birding Guide
Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
0266493153  0429601960
-----Original Message-----

From: Tim Dolby
Sent: Tuesday, November 13, 2012 11:45 AM
Subject: The birds and the bees - nectar feeders

Hi all,

I've just heard an interesting report on ABC Radio Australia about the fact that commercial beekeepers, in terms of nectar production, are having one of their worst seasons on record. The report suggests, that due to our wet winter and cool spring, trees and shrubs are putting all their energy in the development of green growth rather than flowering. See

Anecdotally, I also think the lack of flowering has had an impact the number of nectar feeding birds i.e. our honeyeaters and lorikeets. Personally I've noticed far less lorikeets about the place. For instance, just this morning on my ride to work (through Royal Park in Melbourne) there were virtually no lorikeets. Interestingly the main type of lorikeet I did see (hear) was Little Lorikeet.

The report concludes that our plants are still growing but it will take 12 months to see the benefits, and that this time next year we'll be having a good honey season. I'm speculating that the same applies to our nectar feeding birds, certainly across southern and eastern Australia. In theory spring 2013 will be the 'year' of the nectar feeders!




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