Size: Averages 34 cm long including long tail, 100 g.
Range and lifestyle: Through most of eastern Australia; some birds in Queensland probably live year-round in large home ranges, but others are winter visitors from southern states.
Food: Insects and nectar.
Breeding: The nest is a deep bowl composed of bark with grass around the rim, usually built into the foliage of a gum tree. The female alone incubates the 2 - 4 eggs, which are pale pink splashed with darker pink-brown and purple.
One of the largest honeyeaters in Australia, this species is immediately recognisable by its naked head and neck, the knob on its long bill and its raucous, cackling calls.
Like other members of the honeyeater family, friarbirds eat insects, as well as nectar which they mostly obtain from the blossoms of gum trees and paperbark trees.
When they take over a flowering tree, they will actively and noisily defend it against all other intruding birds.
Large flocks often form, possibly involving migratory individuals from New South Wales or even Victoria.
Text © Richard Noske 2021 CC BY-NC-SA
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