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Australian Native Birds: The Wattlebirds

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Peter has been a birdwatcher since he was a young lad. He loves to share images and stories about Australian birds!

Red wattlebird enjoying the sun

Red wattlebird enjoying the sun

Red Wattlebird

The Australian native red wattlebird is the largest honey-eater in Australia, with its striking and unusual coloring is a very acrobatic bird.

I watch them every morning searching for their food. Although they eat bugs and other insects, they also love to eat the nectar of the gum, bottle-brushes ( Callistemon ) for some reason they prefer the Red Bottle Brush and Grevillea trees when in flower.

They are great to watch as they dart in and out of the foliage and can often be seen hanging upside down to get at a especially nice looking flower.

Red Wattle Birds have very distinctive Voices, a bit of a cross between a loud sneeze and a barking dog voice. Once heard you would know it every time.

The Yellow Wattle Bird is not on the Mainland of Australia and at this point of time is seen only in Tasmania and King Island which is a small farming and fishing island approx halfway between Tasmania and Victoria!

Incidentally King Island , being situated at the entrance to Bass Strait, is reported to be the shipwreck capital of Australia with over 60 shipwrecks and over 2000 lives lost in it's history!

Types of Wattle Birds

Strangely enough there is a number of different Wattle Birds in our area!

The different types are listed below:

  • Red Wattle Bird
  • Yellow wattle Bird ( very rare )
  • Little Wattle Bird

The Red Wattle Bird is arguably the largest is the species and is conspicuous by it's large Wattles and bright Yellow abdomen.

The Little Wattle bird's name refers to the size of the Wattle rather than the size of the bird. In fact sometimes the Little Wattle bird's Wattle is not evident at all.

The Yellow Wattle bird is not found in my area and I believe that it is native only in the island State of Tasmania approximately 500km from the Mainland.

Sounds of the Wattle Bird

If you would like to hear the sounds of the various Wattle Birds please feel free to watch the short Slide-show video that I have put together to enhance the viewing experience!

Sounds of our Wattle Birds

Red Wattle Bird Feeding Habits

Red Wattle Bird uses Hawking to gather food !

Nearly every night I can watch The Red Wattle bird seeking it's meal. One of the main methods the wattle bird uses is called 'Hawking'.
Hawking, a term derived from the way that Hawks capture their food, is a method many types of birds use to catch insects that fly in the air.
The bird in question, in my case the Red Wattle Bird will perch on a limb of a tree and keep watch. When they spot an insect in the air they will leave their perch, fly out and snatch the insect with their beak, some times you can see the bird hovering in the air.
The Wattle Bird will then return to their cover and devour their catch.
And so the process continues until the bird is sated.
Hawking can also be called 'fly-catching' and some other breeds of birds that use this method of gathering food are 'swifts' 'swallows' and 'night jars'
The Red Wattle Bird does not rely completely on this method of food gathering as they love to gather the nectar from the gum trees and grevillea bushes.

Red Wattle Bird feasting from Gum Tree

Wattle Birds are great entertainment as they hang about looking for nectar.

Wattle Birds are great entertainment as they hang about looking for nectar.

Little Wattle Bird ready to feast on Grevillea Bush

Little Wattle bird looking very inquisitive! and ready to drink nectar

Little Wattle bird looking very inquisitive! and ready to drink nectar

Wattle bird 'hawking'

Wattle bird hovering in the air or 'hawking' its prey.

Wattle bird hovering in the air or 'hawking' its prey.

Red Wattle

The Wattle of  the Red Wattle Bird.

The Wattle of the Red Wattle Bird.

Red Wattle Bird Origin

Until just recently I thought that the Wattle Bird had got it's name due to it's relationship with our Australian native acacia tree with the common name of Wattle. However this is not the case at all!

So let me clear this up!. The Red Wattle Bird ( Anthochaera carunculata ) to give this bird it's correct name is not named because it eats or lives in the Wattle tree it is actually a member of the 'Honey eater' family.

The name 'Wattle' is a reference to the flesh like dewlap (see the above image)that hangs down from either side of it's head similar I guess to we humans 'ear lobes'.
Other birds known to have this dewlap are chickens, turkeys.


The Red Wattle Bird in particular has a nest that is not all that big just a few twigs and bark placed in the fork of a branch. Generally the bird lays 2 or 3 eggs and the eggs seem quite large for a bird of it's size. The egg of a Wattle Bird measures around 36mm x 22mm.

Little Wattle Bird ( Anthochaera chrysoptera ) 27 - 33 cm

The Little Wattle Bird is about 6 cm smaller than it's big brother the Red Wattle Bird and it is hard to distinguish between a Juvenile Red Wattle and a Little Wattle bird.

The main difference is that the Little Wattle has no visible Wattles (go figure) and has a silvery patch down it's ears. The eyes of the Little Wattle bird are a Grey-blue color

The Little Wattle Bird is a noisy bird and can often be seen flying around in pairs apparently oblivious to everything around them. They also have a much more attractive voice and you can hear them having conversation with each other, the female in a higher pitch than the male and making different sounds of 'bill snapping' chuckling types of calls.

Breeding of Little Wattle Birds

They have a similar pattern to the Red Wattle Bird but they tend to hide their nests a bit better.

They also lay 2-3 eggs and fortunately for them their eggs are slightly smaller measuring only 29mm x 21mm.

Little Wattle Bird on the ground. This is unusual for me as you don't often see them walking!

Little Wattle Bird on the ground. This is unusual for me as you don't often see them walking!

Looking for Red Wattle Birds

Questions & Answers

Question: I have three red wattlebird nests in my yard. Do you think they would all be from the same pair? It's hard to tell if they are always the same ones, but I only see two mature birds at a time.

Answer: In my experience, different families of red wattlebirds don't usually get on well together so I would guess that if there were other 'families' of red wattlebirds around at some time or other, they would have been driven off by your two remaining mature red wattlebirds.

Question: What is the difference between the male Red Wattle bird and the female Red Wattle Bird?

Answer: That is a very good question and unfortunately, I cannot give you a more positive one other than I believe that the Male Red Wattle bird is slightly longer and stronger looking than the female Red Wattle bird. I believe the male is also more aggressive and not as timid than the female Red Wattle bird.

Question: I have very noisy Red Wattle birds here in Far East Gippsland, Victoria. They have managed to chase all the small birds out of my garden. I've also noticed that the blackbirds have gone too, which is great. Is it possible the Wattle birds chased them away? And yesterday, for the first time, the Rosella's didn't come down for their evening feed. Could the Wattle birds be responsible for that too?

Answer: Yes Leonie, the Red Wattle birds are very noisy and will chase other more timid birds away from 'their' territory! Having said that we also have blackbirds in our yard and they seem to have reached a balance with the Red Wattle birds ( Blackbirds have such a beautiful song) We don't have any problems with the Rosella's both Crimson and Eastern often drop in to graze on the grass. However, they do seem to be more seasonal whereas the Red Wattle Birds are more territorial.

Question: Can Red Wattle birds be tamed?

Answer: Red Wattle birds will become human-friendly and learn to trust humans if they are given the treatment and respect that and wild birds deserves. However, it is highly recommended that you don't become so friendly with them they become reliant on you for their food.

Question: Do juvenile Red Wattle birds have no tail feathers?

Answer: To the best of my knowledge, most birds are well and truly hatched before they show any sign of true feathers. The tail feathers are usually the last of the bird's feathers to grow and they are normally out of the nest before we see the feathers.

Question: Have you seen Little Wattlebirds engaged in tail-wagging? I have been observing them for months, and now the 'family' is doing a lot of this behavior? Any ideas?

Answer: This is a great question, and it is quite puzzling.

In my experiences, the Little Wattlebird does not wag its tail; by that I mean it does not point its tail upright at about 90 degrees to its body and swing the tip from side to side. The only bird that would come close to the Little Wattlebird in statue and wag its tail is the Willie Wag Tail. I would love to see a photo of your Little Wattlebird; it may have picked up a new habit.

Question: Are male and female Red Wattle birds different colors?

Answer: No, so far in my observation of Ted Wattle birds the male and female are the same color, although like a lot of birds during breeding periods their colors do alter slightly.

Question: Our Red Wattle birds disappear over summer. Do they migrate, and if so where do they go?

Answer: To the best of my knowledge, the Red Wattle bird is a sedentary bird and in our area are around all year. In the summer they enjoy bathing in a birth bath that is always replenished with fresh water. The Redwattle birds love to bathe in the hot weather. Maybe you should put a bath out for them to use, and they will stay around longer.

Question: How big would an aviary have to be to house a Yellow Wattle bird?

Answer: I believe that to keep a Yellow Wattle bird in captivity would require a bird keepers license and have a permit to keep the bird in question. In Australia, there are heavy penalties for any offenses involving illegally kept wild birds.

© 2011 Peter


Marika on August 23, 2020:

Do you know if the male or female red Wattlebird makes the nest?

Peter (author) from Australia on December 17, 2018:

Hi Chris, the Red Wattle bird may think that you are a threat to a new born chic and is trying to drive you away. If so it should stop once the chic has developed into a juvenile Wattle bird. I have never experienced this although they fly very fast and try to keep the other types of birds away so that they get all of the food that is supplied.

You could try offering them bird healthy sweet treats so that they come to recognise you and know that you mean no harm. Red Wattle birds are so enjoyable to watch when they eat the nectar from the flowering trees :)

Chris on December 11, 2018:

How can I stop a Wattle bird from swooping me every time I go in the garden?

Peter (author) from Australia on November 05, 2018:

Linda WA Indeed Wow that is something I am sure all bird lovers would like to see. My experience with wattle birds has never been that friendly. We are in the process of relocating and in the new property the Wattle Birds are very inquisitive , so we may be able to befriend them some time soon.

Hi Kim yes they do seem to come and go but I still feel that the Red Wattle bird is territorial and does not stray too far unless forced to do so by predators, cats and dogs.

Great to read stories like this about our Australian Native Birds so folks keep them coming.

Kim on October 19, 2018:

Wow how thrilling Linda. We had nest with two red wattle birds at the fron of our house. One day they were there the next gone. We thought they had died. A few days later we have just seen them in a tree about 20 feet away. We didn't think they would be ready to fly. It was good to see them

Linda wa on June 13, 2018:

We have wattle birds in our garden. Today one followed my husband down the garden then sat on his hand. It stayed on the patio with us for ages and does not seem in the least bit afraid. Just now it flew down and sat on my shoulder. We have been in this house for 7 years and have never even a bird act like this before

Peter (author) from Australia on March 10, 2018:

G'day Domenic, you are very lucky to see a wattle bird nest down low. The eggs of a wattle bird can hatch in a span of anywhere between 13 and 21 days. Would love to see some photos of the chicks when the emerge. In my experience Wattle birds generally nest higher in the trees and consequently are hard to spot in the nest. We don't see them until they have developed to be Juveniles.

Domenic on March 08, 2018:

Hey we have a little wattle bird couple nesting under our back porch. I was wondering how long it takes the eggs to hatch. Thanks

Peter (author) from Australia on December 22, 2017:

Lexi , it seems strange to me that a Vet would make a 'wild' bird wait that long for an examination ? Do you have a ' Refuge' for wildlife in your area that you can get in touch with ? I'm not sure where you are located but here in our state we have the RSPCA you could try ringing them to get a more immediate help for you poor little Red Wattle Bird !

lexi on December 18, 2017:

it been doing the same thing for weeks now. we have arranged an appointment with the veterinarian on the 28 of December.

what do we do until that time

Peter (author) from Australia on December 15, 2017:

@Lexi my goodness I have never seen a Red Wattle Bird behave in this manner ? Is it alive ? How is it going now ?

In my experience Red Wattle Birds are very shy birds and do not allow humans to handle them very easily and take a long time to learn to trust us !

Lets know if it is surviving ?

Peter (author) from Australia on December 15, 2017:

@Janet thanks for a great comment :) We also have the small wattle bird and it is hard to tell the difference between the Small Wattle Bird and the baby Red Wattle birds (no wattles) However I think the baby Red Wattle birds grow into full size pretty quickly! In answer to your query on the 'odd' bird out I'm not sure from your description what it could be ? You could try looking up 'New Holland' Honeyeater and see if that fits. If you could could send me a photo it would give me a better idea. Thanks again for dropping by cheers Peter

lexi on December 13, 2017:

we found a red wattle bird in our backyard. it not moving and is standing still. what is gong on with the bird. we put it in a box with hay. what is it doing.

Janet on November 07, 2017:

I livd in a NE suburb of Melbourne in the so-called "green wedge" and am extremely lucky to have many native birds in my mostly native garden.

Your page came up whilst I was searching for "wattle bird with white ears" as I had just spotted one feeding near the ground. Having many red wattle birds of all ages feeding in the tall bottlebrush, I noticed that this one looked different, smaller, breast much lighter brown, and wing feathers a greater range of browns, and the white ears.

As you described the small wattle bird as living in Tasmania, could the one I spotted just be a juvenile red (though I haven't seen this colouring before?).

Opinions happily recieved! Thanks for a great site dedicated to a species I have been closely watching for a number of years in my garden:). Janet

Peter (author) from Australia on April 18, 2017:

Hi there Sophia it is great that you are taking on such a responsibility :) our little feathered friends need more friends like you :)

It is important to note that Red Wattlebirds are nectivores and if they are to flourish they need special diets!

If you are not familiar with their diets there is too much to explain about the Red Wattle Bird in this comment but you will find heaps of info at this site:

I hope your little one survives its experience and grows up to become your friend :)

Thanks so much for sharing your story and please feel free to keep us up to date with more news about your Red Wattlebird friend :)

Sophia age 7 on April 17, 2017:

We have lots of wattle birds in our garden and we just found one in our that can't fly so we are looking after it until it is ok to fly.

Peter (author) from Australia on November 20, 2016:

Hi Owen and thanks for the great question?

To the best of my knowledge Red Wattle birds will not nest in a Box ! The nests that I have seen are usually situated high in trees mainly in the forks of branches and made up of loose twigs.

The Red Wattle bird chics have to 'grow up' very quickly and face the world at a very young age or face the consequences !

Owen on November 15, 2016:

Any idea of bird box sizes for the Red Wattle?

Peter (author) from Australia on December 22, 2015:

@ CorneliaMladenova the Red Wattle Bird is always around here and 'fighting' with the Magpies to see who owns the territory lol

Thanks for dropping by :)

Korneliya Yonkova from Cork, Ireland on December 20, 2015:

Amazing creatures. I am bird lover and bird watcher but never have heard of the wattle birds. Thank you for this interesting and detailed information. :)

Peter (author) from Australia on December 01, 2014:

@Sunder1 birds fascinate me to no end :) The Red Wattle Bird is one of my favorites and we watched them today bathing in the bird bath we provide for our feathered friends :)

rahul from India on November 30, 2014:

I like birds very much.You have provided interesting information about red wattle bird

Peter (author) from Australia on August 04, 2014:

@Nell Rose G'day Nell it's always a pleasure to see you :) Thanks for the visit and the share :)

@Mel Carriere The Red Wattle Birds are very entertaining birds in that they are 'acrobatic' and although they are regarded as Passerines that are , in my opinion not gifted with a great singing voice. It's more like a small dog's 'bark'!.

Our Magpie was incorrectly named from the European Magpie but in fact is not related to it ! Thanks so much for your lovely comment :)

@CMHypno thanks so much for dropping by and leaving such a nice comment and I was a great thrill to receive the HOTD.

The Red Wattle Bird still fascinates us with it's entertaining swoops and it's gathering of the nectar from the flowers on the trees :)

CMHypno from Other Side of the Sun on August 03, 2014:

Congratulations on your HOTD and for all the great information and photos of wattle birds

Mel Carriere from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado on August 02, 2014:

Beautiful bird! I am happy to have stumbled across your hubs on Australian birds, as I do quite a bit of bird watching here in the US. One question: Are the Honeyeaters Passerines? I know there are a lot of fascinating songbird lineages in Australia. I think the Crows, Magpies, Jays line was supposed to have originated there. Great hub!

Nell Rose from England on August 02, 2014:

Came back for another read, good to see you! voted up and shared, nell

Peter (author) from Australia on January 05, 2014:

@kaz Hi and thanks for sharing your great story !

Let me commend you for you concern of our little feathered friends. I have a real concern that with the felling of so many trees in the never ending quest for land that our bird life will suffer in their lack of habitat.

Sorry for my little rant there :)

It's great that you were able to care for them so well. Have you been able to definitely identify the chickens as yet ? You don't mention in your post if you have seen the Mum and Dad Birds are they still around?

So many questions lol It just shows how interesting stories like this are to our readers.

I have another Hub here about Magpies and have over 200 comments with Magpie Lovers sharing their own stories !

What a great idea with the aviary ! You can bet that when you do release them to the wild they will not stray far from their 'home' as Wattle birds are just as territorial as Magpies.

Please Kaz keep us up to date with your new family members. I bet they have names already ?

Cheers Agvulpes

kaz on January 03, 2014:

well seeing as this is a wattle bird discussion..thought id say hello....and let you know about our recent daughters boyfriend (a tree lopper) was asked to remove a tree, however there was a small nest in it..and he didn't want to hurt the two newborn babies in yes.....we adopted a nest with two babies....having no idea what sort of birds they even were we had to really play it by ear...and the nest was placed in a styro box, where a light was added at night, and they were raised in the they started to develop feathers, and were so damned cute, it was time to try and find out, what we had been feeding (two hourly the first few weeks.then to four hours...they came to work with me each day in the car in their box, and they were fed four hourly, a mixture of insectivor, and various fruit purees mixed begin with it was hand feeding with a syringe, so cute they would gape with their beaks when they were hungry.....then we used tweezers..later they began to eat them selves, and now they eat from an eggcup.... their voice is a gluck..kuk noise, and are happy to tell me when they are hungry, recently we built them an aviary, and filled it with native flora, hoping they will learn to discover their real food.... its been such a pleasure raising them, learning about them, and watching them grow..hopefully we can return them to the wild when they have learned to fend for them selves, which was the whole idea of the aviary............fingers crossed............... kaz

Peter (author) from Australia on March 02, 2013:

G'day Eddy and thanks for dropping by :)

I love writing and taking photos of birds and this Hub about the Red Wattle bird was just a pleasure.

If you enjoyed this one you may also enjoy my favorite about our own Australian Magpie, please excuse the plug:

Thanks so much for the kind words :)

Eiddwen from Wales on March 01, 2013:

I love everything and anything to do with nature and this one was a treat.

Here's to many more to come.


Peter (author) from Australia on January 06, 2013:

G'day pstraubie48 and thanks for dropping by and leaving such a nice comment.

With regard to wattles on the red wattle bird you might find this article on bird wattles an interesting one:

The Red Wattle bird is definitely not related to the dove family they love to eat the nectar in our flowering trees like gums and grevillias.

Thanks again for the kind words and the Angels you send are much appreciated :)

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on January 05, 2013:

Good morning

I do not know how I missed this...usually anything about birds gets my attention. This is so interesting and filled with so much I did not know. When I looked at the close up pick of the wattle it did remind me of the 'wattle' on chickens and turkeys. Now I will check to see if it is called a wattle on them.

thanks for sharing this and for the first glance, it reminded me of a dove we have in Florida but upon closer inspection, no so much.

Congratulations on your hub of the day...even though it was a while back. I can see you deserve the recognition. Sending Angels to you :) ps

Peter (author) from Australia on September 14, 2012:

G'day D.A.L. always a pleasure to have you visit one of my articles.

The Red Wattle and Little Wattle bird although very common in my neck of the woods are always entertaining to watch and right now with Spring upon us the Wattle Birds, as are most birds, are getting very lively:)

Dave from Lancashire north west England on September 13, 2012:

agvulpes, once again another enjoyable hub about your native species. The hub as once again added to my knowledge about wildlife species, from your part of the world. Great hub voted up.

Peter (author) from Australia on September 10, 2012:

G'day elle and thanks for the visit on the Red Wattle Bird Hub :)

We also love the Black Cockatoos and there is an old tale handed down that if you see a single Black Cockatoo it is going to rain.

elle64 from Scandinavia on September 09, 2012:

Whe n I travelled Australia I loved the black cocatoes, they were so special.

Peter (author) from Australia on September 07, 2012:

I received this email from Suzie today:

"Hello,I've picked up a baby this afternoon at dusk,he's fallen from the nest and survived half a day,I found it hard to leave him out there.He's not too small,sits in my hand,has most feathers though a few bare patches on his back and neck.I've left him sleeping and warm in a towel,though not sure what to do to help him survive the night.Can you send me any tips,and if he does live till morning and I don't hear from you till tomorrow,what should I feed him etc,hoping to hear from you soon,regards Susie."


@ Suzie who has found a baby Red Wattle bird. I am not qualified to give you an opinion but having done some quick research (see the links below) I would suggest that you do not feed the bird anything and follow the instructions in the video. In a quick summary if the Red Wattle bird appears to be in good condition you may have inadvertently 'kidnapped' the bird and it requires to be put back in it's nest for parental care!

If you can't find it's nest make up a makeshift nest and put it up in the tree near it's original nest (if you know its location) According to the experts the Mother red wattle bird will be able to then take care of its baby!

Keep your eye on the nest and defend it from stray dogs and cats.

In Victoria you are not permitted to keep wild birds and feeding birds requires professional advise.

If you contact the local wild life sanctuary near you they will give you all the help you need!

Peter (author) from Australia on June 23, 2012:

Yes I am a nature lover and particularly birds more specifically Australian Native Birds thanks so much for your kind comment :-)

vivekananda from India on June 22, 2012:

A nature lover's hub can't be better than this. Thanks for sharing.

Peter (author) from Australia on April 18, 2012:

These Red Wattle Birds never fail to amaze me with their antics. Better than TV :-)

Deb Hirt from Stillwater, OK on March 27, 2012:

Tell me more about Australian birds. I'm sure that many other people would like to know, too.

Peter (author) from Australia on March 17, 2012:

Hi q, these species of birds especially the Red Wattle bird never fail to surprise me. I watch them every day and I'm learning something about their habits/likes all of the time. Thanks for taking the time to visit and leave a comment :-) on March 08, 2012:

thank you for this most awesome view into the 'wattle's life' I had heard of the little wattle before but did not know this group of birds. Love the Hub - thank you for taking the time to educate us.


Peter (author) from Australia on February 09, 2012:

Joy56 Thank you so much for your gracious comment. Australia is very fortunate indeed to have many interesting Native birds, in color, voice and behavior.

Thanks again for the visit and the vote up.

Peter (author) from Australia on February 09, 2012:

Movie Master thanks so much for taking the time to read and rate this hub on the Red Wattle Bird.

Joy56 on February 02, 2012:

That was a beautiful hub, you went to so much trouble, to bring us in to your garden with you...... Even though i am in Ireland, the other side of the world..... It was interesting, and i loved the way you made the video so we can also hear the birds distinctive cry. I must catch up with some more of your hubs.... Voted up and beautiful.

Movie Master from United Kingdom on January 27, 2012:

What a fabulous bird and distinctive voice, thank you for this interesting look at the Wattle, I thoroughly enjoyed reading and voted up, best wishes Lesley

Peter (author) from Australia on November 24, 2011:

Thank you I appreciate your kind comment :-)

ImChemist on November 21, 2011:

thanks for sharing this awesome hub , rated and voted.

Peter (author) from Australia on November 19, 2011:

Hi Pam, I think it is indeed a great honor and privilege to care for the birds and animals of the wild and people who do this should be given more support.

I would say that when you release this little fella he will not stray far from yourself.

We have a couple of families of Red Wattle and Small Wattle birds in our back yard and they offer us a great deal of entertainment watching them deal with the other bird life:-)

For security reasons I have removed your email from public viewing. You can contact us from the 'Contact' button on the top right hand of this page.

Thanks for sharing the story of the baby Red Wattle bird with us. I hope he is still progressing well :-)

Pam on November 17, 2011:

I currently have a baby Red Wattle Bird in my care. He came in rescued a month or so ago. He was so small when I got him. He is just starting to get his yellow belly and you can see a small hint of wattle coming up under his eyes. If you'd like photos of him then I am happy to email you some.

Peter (author) from Australia on August 11, 2011:

Now that you mention it I am not sure if any bird eats nectar from the Wattle Tree.

We do have some Wattle trees on our property and do not recall ever seeing any bird eating the nectar.

billyaustindillon on August 11, 2011:

That is interesting that the wattle bird doesn't like to eat wattle - which birds do I wonder?

Yes the pollen from wattle can really get to those suffering from hay fever.

Peter (author) from Australia on August 10, 2011:

Billy thanks for your kind words :-) The local red wattle bird strangely enough does not eat from the wattle tree it prefers the nectar of the Gums and Grevillia trees.

An interesting side line on the wattle tree is that it is a definite miss for people with allergy problems.

billyaustindillon on August 10, 2011:

Beautifully put together - a wonderful reflection of Australian native fauna and flora. Very apt with the wattle being Australia's natural plant also.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 17, 2011:

@akirchner thanks for your kind comment. All my own work as well. lol

Thanks for the heads-up on the link. I think it must have broke when we changed to Subdomain. All fixed now though.


Audrey Kirchner from Washington on July 17, 2011:

Fascinating~ and GREAT PICS~ I love how you did the circle superimposed - how cool is that~

Wanted to follow your wife too but can't seem to connect on her link on here. I'll look at it later because I know I've seen her name!

Peter (author) from Australia on July 11, 2011:

@fullboz thanks for the visit to my Hub called Australian Native Birds the Red Wattle Bird :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 11, 2011:

@Papayo, I'm familiar with Liverpool and believe that certain parts of the area are pretty heavily industrialized ? We can't stop progress can we? Or maybe we can! We have the same little galahs on the side of our roads! Oblivious to the cars going past but a pedestrian walks past and they are off!!!

fullboz on July 11, 2011:

welcome to my hub

Papayo from Sydney, Australia on July 11, 2011:

The river at Liverpool is spactus for the last two years, even the Vietnamese don't fish there anymore. No idea why it is so.

We do get lots of galahs, little pink and grey cows eating the grass seed. We also have that grass parrot that everyone was so fussed about rediscovering after a century of extinction a few year ago. Scare the hell out of pedestrians on the main roads when they fly up. I guess no-one thought to look in industrial parts of Moorebank, lolol.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 11, 2011:

@Papayo. Now that you bring it up I have not seen sparrows around here for ages?

To be quite honest here in Australia sparrows are an introduced bird and are widely regarded as pests. In fact the state of WA actively works at keeping the cute little Sparrow out of their state!

You are indeed very fortunate to live on the banks of such a beautiful river it is a pity that more effort is not put into keeping our Australian rivers in peek condition, the lack of wildlife seems to indicate that the river is not in good health?

Well I must say that you are fortunate to have seen wild peacocks I have never been in the right place for that to have occurred.

You have touched on one of my favorite birds with the Pelican, it's a shame that you don't see them any more as with the water-hen and black swans. We actually had a flock of Ibis in out back yard today as well as a pair of Ducks!

I much prefer the Red Wattle Birds to the Currawong, we have crows in our neck of the wood!

I agree with you totally about the Sea Gull they are incredible aren't they always bright and shiny, and noisy, we often feed them on the foreshore!

Christchurch has been through some tough times recently and I really feel for them and hope that they can recover from the disaster.

Thanks so much for coming by and sharing your experiences with us :-)

Papayo from Sydney, Australia on July 11, 2011:

Tell me Avgulpes, what happened to the sparrows?

I live on the banks of the gorgeous Georges River, and when I moved here in 1994 there were mobs of sparrows, fifty or more, and they were everywhere. Just as they were in other parts of Sydney. The mobs halved to about twenty or thirty after five years and then vanished - catterploom! From one moment to the next.

The sparrows came back five years later in very small numbers for a few years but then vanished again and now I can say in all honesty that I have seen more wild peacocks in my street than I have seen sparrows of any kind in the last to years. 2-nil.

All of the birdlife in the Georges River has gone too. It became infested with Brazilian water lily and they had to remove all plant life to get rid of it. No more pelicans. No more waterhen. No more black swans. Also the bullsharks made it past the weir and so there are sharks in both the fresh water and the brackish.

Curiously the currawongs have made a return after long absence.

I grew up in Christchurch, a city without pigeons, crows, or swallows. Australian birds remain eternally fascinating to me even after thirty years but seagulls are my eternal favourite - they swim, fly and walk; they remain spotlessly white even after going into the grossest carcass; and they only ever get dragged out of the cake shop kicking and screaming.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 10, 2011:

htodd, many thanks for dropping by and reading about the Wattle Birds of Australia :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 10, 2011:

@SweetiePie, Yes they are not as colorful as some of our native birds but they make up for their lack of color with their antics. They are great to watch:-)

The food gathering is another story altogether and unfortunately they are not immune from the old story of 'survival of the fittest'.

There are many birds that prey on the nests of other birds and steal their eggs, butcher birds is one species that come to mind.

However when you think about it, is it any different to we humans raiding the nests of the Hens to take their eggs?

Actually out here I find that the Crows are rather 'cowardly' birds and I have seen them harassed and chased away by the little Willy Wag Tail :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 10, 2011:

@Jokylu, thank you for your kind words :-)

I love the area of the coast around South Gippsland I have spent many a pleasant time at Kilcunda and I just love all along that coastline. Pity about the Desal plant they are putting in down that way :(

I feel sure that the Red Wattle Bird would be around there somewhere but I sure envy you having the Eagles as residents on your property. I would image they would keep the vermin down pretty well.

Thanks again for your kind comment :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 10, 2011:

Papayo, LOL yes I had my 15 minutes of fame now it is back to the salt mines :-)

I would sure love to see you and that Wattle Bird fighting over spilt mild oops sorry spilt berries lol

I guess one of the prices we pay for so called 'progress' is the loss of habitat for our Native Birds.

I hope that this little friend comes back and shares the Berries when the next season comes up.

Thanks heaps for taking the time to come back and visit :-)

htodd from United States on July 10, 2011:

Great post..Thanks

SweetiePie from Southern California, USA on July 10, 2011:

These are beautiful birds indeed. It is always interesting to watch the food gathering patterns of birds, but I was disturbed when I recently saw a black crow take what looked like an egg from a smaller birds next. The smaller birds went after him, but there was little they could do.

daneastside on July 09, 2011:

great pics, beautiful Wattle bird.

Jokylu from Waratah North, Victoria. on July 09, 2011:

A beautifully compiled hub. We live in South gippsland on the coast. I am sure we have wattle birds here although I am not a bird buff. We have mainly parrots and rosellas. We also have the prielege of being able to watch some majestic eagles who nest in a dead tree on one of our farms. Amazing creatures.

Thankyou for a very informative hub.

Papayo from Sydney, Australia on July 09, 2011:


You were Hub of the day, how could I not read! Especially when I saw that curry-munching sparrow once again.

Curry leaf trees have a black berry that is safe to eat (if birds eat we can eat) that is sweet and luscious to first taste and sweet and peppery on the aftertaste.

He and I were the only ones who enjoyed eating them and he got most of them.

I do miss the competition now that he no longer calls.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 09, 2011:

Thanks so much for your kind comment :-)

angelina1607 on July 09, 2011:

Amazing Creature..!!!

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@AgesMGMT, Thanks for dropping by and leaving such a nice comment on my hub about the Red Wattle Bird they sure are a great bird to have around the place :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@Papayo, yep the wattle bird seems able to eat anything.

The Red Wattle Bird does exactly the same thing with the berries from our Lilly Pilly trees. lol

I'm pleased that I have been able to help in some small way!

Thanks for taking the time to read this Hub :-)

AgesMGMT from New York on July 08, 2011:

Nice Hub, and congrats on Hub of the day!

Papayo from Sydney, Australia on July 08, 2011:

There was a yellow wattle bird who used to eat all the peppery blackberries off my curry leaf tree when no other bird would touch them. I have long wondered what kind of bird it was and today you have told me.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@Hui (?) Thank you for dropping by and leaving such a lovely comment, your kind thoughts are much appreciated.

Cheers :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@RTalloni, thanks for taking the time to have a look at my hub on our Red Wattle Bird they are a fascinating bird. I am looking at ways of improving my video making ability!

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@RNMSN, Thanks Barbara, I certainly appreciate your kind words of support and thank you so much for taking the time to read about our Red Wattle Birds. They are indeed a delight to have around the place:-)

Thanks again for the 'Yippee' and the 'You Rock' :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@FloraBreenRobison. Thank you and I do regard it as a high honor to be awarded the Hub of the Day.

It is indeed a great joy to have the Red Wattle Birds keeping us amused with their antics!

Thanks for dropping by and leaving a nice comment :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 08, 2011:

@conradofontanilla, you are so fortunate to have a Kingfisher so near to your home:-)

I think that it is stating the obvious that I have a deep love of birds myself and being woken by them in the morning is one of the great joys in life. Do you not agree?

I am not familiar with the stone dove but I will do some research and see if we have similar birds. In Australia we have a good range of birds that talk (imitate voices), in fact I believe that nearly all birds have the ability to imitate sounds.

My personal choice is to not keep birds in cages UNLESS they have been bred for that specific reason and have not known there freedom, such as Homing Pidgeons etc.

Thanks so much for dropping by and sharing with us your experiences:-)

Hui (蕙) on July 08, 2011:

Beautiful bird, beautiful singsing! Simple and fluent writing introduction. Anyway, lovely nature! We all love it.

RTalloni on July 08, 2011:

Nice overview of Wattles. Liked the video you put together, too.

Barbara Bethard from Tucson, Az on July 08, 2011:

Yes!! Flora got to congrats before me but yippee for Agvulpes on a fantastically written hub and HUB of the DAY!!!

you rock!!!

FloraBreenRobison on July 08, 2011:

Congratulations on being named the hub of the day. It must be a job to have those birds near you. They are beautiful.

conradofontanilla from Philippines on July 08, 2011:

I love birds. A kingfisher sleeps near our house and wakes me up early in the morning with its loud cry. As a child I stole youngs of stone doves for pets. I wanted to train a bird to talk so I got youngs of martinez which is similar to Talking Mayna; martinez can also be trained to imitate people talk. I never succeeded making a bird talk. The first time my young dove slipped out from its cage while I was feeding it,it came back. But the second time around it never did. It made me sad. I never got a young dove again.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 06, 2011:

For anyone interested in hearing the sounds of the Red Wattle Bird I have just added a short video to give you the aural experience as well as the visual!

Peter (author) from Australia on July 06, 2011:

G'day Keith, we are wakened every morning with the chatter of the various birds, including the Red Wattle bird. I'm sure Linda will see many birds up at E/Warby. I hope that she is endowed with plenty of patience and a steady hand :-)

I have done some Lead Lighting in the past and I feel sure that she will enjoy the experience. Cutting glass and soldering seem to be the biggest tasks to master for the newcomers. I wish her luck with both of these adventures.

attemptedhumour from Australia on July 06, 2011:

Hi Peter. The Aussie wild birds are a joy to wake up to. I'm no expert on them, so your hubs are interesting to read. My wife Linda has just bought a telephoto lens so that she can get some good close up shots at our shack in East Warby. She has also started a lead lighting course. She is good artistically too, so she wants to incorporate many birds into lead light windows. We have thirteen small windows above larger ones in our house in Melbourne, so she will be busy with that project. The small windows are about 700x 300 so there's a bit of space to cover. Now all she has to do is find the time to do them all. Must away Keith.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 05, 2011:

G'day DAL, it's a pleasure to see you again. The Red Wattle Bird is indeed fascinating. In fact I am watching them right now. I believe they may be selecting partners for next season ?

Thanks for your kind comment:-)

Cheers mate !

Dave from Lancashire north west England on July 05, 2011:

agvulpes, Thank you for sharing another brilliant hub about your fascinating creatures always a joy to read.Best wishes to you.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 04, 2011:

G'day Nell, I must confess that I did not know about the Red Wattle Bird origin until I started the research.

I just checked out the Red Kite! This is a beautiful looking bird and looks a bit like an Eagle!

Thanks for dropping by :-)

Nell Rose from England on July 03, 2011:

Hi, I had never heard of it before, fascinating to know why it was called the wattle because of his neck, I am also lucky to have a great bird that lives in the tree near me, the Red Kite! I love the sound that it makes, not like an ordinary bird, thanks for a really interesting hub, cheers nell

Peter (author) from Australia on July 02, 2011:

@prasetio. Thank you my friend I do appreciate your kind comment. Like yourself I like to share my knowledge and let other cultures know more about my wonder country!

The Red Wattle Bird is just one example of our unique fauna and flora.

Your visits are very much appreciated :-)

Peter (author) from Australia on July 02, 2011:

@upal in answer to you question, do they sing?

I would not call the noise that the Red Wattle bird makes singing although they do have a 'voice'.

I am working on a video to instal on this Hub to give you some idea or how they sound!

Thanks for your question:-)

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on July 02, 2011:

I love birds and you have nice information about Australian native birds. I had never knew about this before. Thanks for writing and share with us. I also love all stunning pictures here. Well done, my friend. Rated up!


Ashraf Mir from Dhaka on July 02, 2011:

Do they sing? This bird is unknown to me. I wanna listen songs of this bird if they sing at all.

Peter (author) from Australia on July 01, 2011:

@alladream, thanks for dropping by, and finding the information on our Australian Native Birds helpful !