Endemic to Far North Queensland, between Cooktown and the southern end of the Paluma Range, the Macleay’s Honeyeater is an inconspicuous species that flitters at the edge of rainforests, in orchids and in gardens.

However, the Macleay’s Honeyeater differs from the numerous other members of the honeyeater family in that it perches higher up within the rainforest. It also flits from branch to branch when it’s not hovering around a range of flowering plants.

mccleays honeyeater in Far North Queensland

Despite its unassuming nature, the Macleay’s Honeyeater can often be spotted on Thala’s grounds, where it feeds on a diet of roughly 70% insects and spiders, 20% nectar, and 10% fruit. This diet plays an important role in the pollination of rainforest flowers.

Fortunately for this mid-sized honeyeater, there appears to be no substantial predator threatening its survival, and its restricted range of subsistence doesn’t appear to effect its numbers, with its population remaining stable.

Distinctly adorned, the Macleay’s Honeyeater wears a tartan pattern, a black cap and has an orange patch surrounding one eye.

Its breeding season, which occurs between September and March, is facilitated by its snappy and cheerful ‘tosweet-swe-twseet’ call, which is a particularly musical addition to the forests in and around Thala.