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Brown Headed Honeyeater

The Brown Headed Honeyeater is another noisy bush bird often found in groups. A small bird, about the size of a sparrow. They will often come into drink in large groups and surround the birdbath or line up along the dam.

Wikipedia Description

The brown-headed honeyeater (Melithreptus brevirostris) is a species of passerine bird in the family Meliphagidae. It is endemic to Australia. Its natural habitats are temperate forests and Mediterranean-type shrubby vegetation.

Taxonomy

The brown-headed honeyeater was first described by Vigors & Horsfield in 1827. Its species name is derived from the Latin terms brevis ‘short’, and rostrum ‘beak’. Five subspecies have been described. The race magnirostris from Kangaroo Island has a noticeably larger bill.[2]

It is a member of the genus Melithreptus, with several species of similar size and all black-headed, apart from this species, in the honeyeater family Meliphagidae. Molecular markers show the brown-headed honeyeater is most closely related to the black-chinned honeyeater, with the strong-billed honeyeater an earlier offshoot between 6.7 and 3.4 million years ago.[3]

Description

A small honeyeater ranging from 13 to 15 cm (5.2–6 in) in length, it is olive-brown above and buff below, with a brown head, nape and throat, a cream or orange patch of bare skin over the eye, and a dull white crescent-shaped patch on the nape. The legs and feet are orange. It makes a scratchy chwik-chwik-chwik call.[4]

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