Eastern Spinebill

Images ©:
Bob Winters | The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industry/McCann

Acanthorhynchus tenuirostris


Small honeyeater, up to 16 cm. Average weight 11 g. Males have a grey-black crown which extends in a black line on either site of the breast. The breast and throat are white, with a rufous patch in the centre of the throat. The wings and lower back are dark grey and the underparts and upper back are buff. Females are similar to males but have less distinct markings.


Details
Type
Bird
Group
Animals
Honeyeater
Biology

Breeding season: August to January. Clutch size is two. Nest is a small cup of twigs, grass and bark, combed with hair and spider's web, built in a tree fork, generally between 1-5 m from the ground. Females build the nest and incubate the eggs. Both parents feed the young. Adults feed while perched or hovering.

Distinctive Markings

Very long, fine down curved beak. Flies energetically, during which its white outer tail feathers are prominent.

Taxonomy
Phylum
Chordata
Class
Aves
Order
Passeriformes
Family
Meliphagidae
Species
tenuirostris

The Eastern Spinebill sometimes hovers like a hummingbird when feeding on the nectar from flowers. Most Australian honeyeaters feed on flowers from a perched position.


Interesting Facts
Diet

Herbivore. Nectar and insects.

Habitat

Heath, forest and woodland.

Native Status
Native to Australia
Audio
Sounds
Short, repeated, high-pitched piping.