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Purple-gaped Honeyeater - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by peterday
Salt Creek, The Coorong, South Australia March 2021
Lichenostomus cratitius


A grey to olive-green honeyeater it has a narrow line of lilac gape skin above a yellow streak on the throat, a blackish facemask and pointed yellow ear-coverts.


Southern coastal areas of Australia. They are said locally to be both nomadic and moderately common.


There are 2 sub-species:

Opinion differs as to whether the latter should be a different sub-species.


Habitat includes open woodlands, mallee, broombrush and heathlands. Mediterranean-type shrubby vegetation.


The primary diet is nectar from mallee eucalypts and banksias but also insects and spiders from foliage, bark or whilst on the wing. Pollen from eucalypts, epacrids and Mistletoe is consumed, as are seeds, and honeydew and manna from insect-infested foliage.

They build a flimsy or delicate nest shaped like a cup of bark strips, grass and down, bound with spider web and egg sacs, slung in a horizontal fork or from slender branchlets within dense foliage.


  1. Christidis, L. and W.E. Boles. (2008) Systematics and Taxonomy of Australian Birds. CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.
  2. Morcombe, Michael (2000, 2003) Field Guide to Australian Birds. Steve Parish Publishing

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