I thought I’d spotted a brand-new bird at the birdbath this morning. I could see how it was a New Holland Honeyeater, but it had a rufus forehead.
I got the bird book out. Nope, no such variation on the New Holland Honeyeater page. I saw it again up the back yard and I wondered how it could get paint, or something, on its head like that.
I wondered if it was from the newly-flowering flax plant, for I was pretty sure it had flown from that direction as I approached.
I poked one of the flowers and the pollen smeared my finger. It was the same colour as the bird’s head.
I decided to keep a lookout for proof. As soon as my hand was on the back door knob, the honeyeater flew down from the gum tree to a flax flower frond. Luckily, I’d not long hung washing on the line, so I had somewhere to hide when I snuck back to catch it in the act.
Sure enough, it has pollen on its head.
How good is that! Mystery solved.
Thanks for looking. Do have a great weekend. Stay safe.