Yellow-spotted honeyeaters (Meliphaga notate) are endemic to northern and eastern Queensland in Australia. This bird is also known as Lesser Lewin Honeyeater which lives in lowland rainforests and their edges. Honeyeaters feed on nectar in blossoming trees in eucalypt forests and near gardens by entering mangroves and congregating with other honeyeaters.
This honeyeater is noisy, and aggressive, and feeds exclusively on the foliage of trees and shrubs. From the ground up to the canopy, it lives in pairs or small loose groups.
It consumes insects, nectar, and fruit, especially lantana berries and wild raspberries. Throughout their range, the birds appear to be sedentary. In terms of size, the bird measures between 180 and 190 mm.
Yellow-spotted Honeyeater (Meliphaga notate)
Yellow-spotted Honeyeater (Meliphaga notate). Photo Credit – Jim Bendon
The male bird is larger than the female, but both sexes look similar. There is a deep olive-green color on the upper parts, wings, and tail. There is a dusky olive color on the forehead and on the lores. A yellow-cream line runs from the base of the bill to below the eye; the malar area and cheeks to the edge of the ear covers are dusky olive; the ear covers have a flared cream-yellow patch. The underparts are plain mid-olive green. The eyes are mid-deep brown, and the bill is black; the gape is yellow-cream in color. The feet are grey-horned. Immature birds are duller than adults. The bird does not migrate.
In the territorial advertisement call of the Yellow-spotted Honeyeater, each note is measured and is loud, sharp, repeated, and descending in pitch. As with Lewin’s Honeyeater, the call is not rattled. Another call is a loud ascending scolding note Queek-queek-queek in alarm caused by a liquid chip in contact.
The Yellow-spotted Honeyeater sings a harsh tchu-chua, often falling in pitch. Nesting and breeding take place between September and February. The bird builds a nest of palm fiber, bark, roots, grasses, and leaves bound with cobwebs, lined with plant down or fine grass, perched on foliage one to four meters up in the rainforest edge or nearby.
In general, yellow-spotted honeyeaters lay two eggs that are smooth, and white, with small, sparse spots of red-black and brown; oval, about 23 x 16 mm in size. It takes about 15 days for the egg to hatch. Approximately 15 days after hatching, the young fledge. Birds usually live in rainforests and their edges, at low altitudes up to 600 meters, in the coastal Cape York Peninsula, southeast of Townsville.
Read More – Grey Honeyeater (Conopophila whitei)
Yellow-spotted Honeyeater (Meliphaga notate)
Yellow-spotted Honeyeater (Meliphaga notate). Photo Credit – Brian McCauley


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