• Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater (Acanthagenys rufogularis)

    The pleasant musical piping and flowing burblings of the Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater are a common sound across much of Australia, particularly throughout the arid woodlands of the continent’s interior. By honeyeater standards they are a large bird ranging in size from 23-26cm in length and with startling blue eyes, apricot-coloured bibs and bright pink bills, they’re surely one the most attractive members of the honeyeater family.

    Photograph taken at Monarto Woodlands, South Australia

    Their diet consists predominantly of native fruits and berries but they will also feed on nectar and insects. They can be found singly, in pairs or when native shrubs are in fruit or trees in blossom they will often feed in small flocks across an area.

    They occasionally soar upwards in an acrobatic display flight before descending with tail spread whilst calling. This behaviour is sometimes repeated with the bird landing nearby, calling from a prominent branch at the top of a tree. Breeding occurs from July to January with 2-4 eggs being laid in a hanging basket-type nest lined with grass and spider webs.

    Semi-arid woodland habitat

    Comments 6 Comments
    1. PeterB's Avatar
      PeterB -
      Stunning shots of bird and habitat Richard and nice to learn a little about their behaviour too. Excellent work.
    1. Adam Blyth's Avatar
      Adam Blyth -
      That first image in particular is outstanding Richard, very nice write up.
    1. Peter Jacobs's Avatar
      Peter Jacobs -
      I appreciate the write up Rich. I often get them in my garden and they have such a beautiful call. Seen close up, their head colours are very striking.
    1. Rising Seep's Avatar
      Rising Seep -
      We take them for granted a bit here, didnt realise they were such a sought after bird some places .. we seen them flocking one time at monarto also, maybe about 20 i think, with juvies, agreed it is impressive scene when they do, the singing and antics goes up a notch! thanks Rich
    1. Kirri Hardy's Avatar
      Kirri Hardy -
      love this bird...awesome photo
    1. Tracy McLaughlin's Avatar
      Tracy McLaughlin -
      Saw my first Spiny Cheeked Honey eater in Mutatwintji Nation Park earlier this year (2016) and it was such a treat. Thank you for a great reminder and an excellent image.