Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

Cinnamon-browed Honeyeater (Melidectes ochromelas)


French: Méliphage à sourcils roux German: Rostohr-Honigfresser Spanish: Mielero cejirrufo
Other common names: Cinnamon-browed Melidectes

Melirrhophetes ochromelas

A. B. Meyer

, 1874,

Hatam, Arfak Mountains, Vogelkop, north-west New Guinea


Birds in Weyland Mts intermediate between nominate race and batesi, and currently included in latter. Geographical variation minimal; in recent examination of topotypical museum material, differences thought to be due to foxing and specimen preparation, and species treated as monotypic#R. Three subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • M. o. ochromelas (A. B. Meyer, 1874) – mountains of Vogelkop (Tamrau Mts, Arfak Mts), Wandammen Mts and Foja Mts#R#R, in NW New Guinea.
  • M. o. batesi (Sharpe, 1886) – Weyland Mts, S slopes of Nassau Mts and mountains of SE New Guinea.
  • M. o. lucifer Mayr, 1931 – mountains of Huon Peninsula, in NE New Guinea.
  • Descriptive notes

    24–25 cm; male 61·5–65g, female 54–62·5 g (nominate). Nominate race has top and side of head and chin and upper throat brownish-black, merging... read more


    Noisy. Vocalizations often comprise 4–5 nasal slurs; also loud, descending “whee oo... read more


    Lower to middle montane forest and forest edge. From c. 1100 m to 1800 m (Huon Peninsula) or 2000 m... read more

    Food and feeding

    No details of diet. Usually forages in canopy, subcanopy and middle levels of forest. Pair seen to probe lichen on trees. Noisy and... read more


    Egg recorded in Jan, and dependent fledgling being fed with insects by both parents in mid-May. Nest undescribed. No other information... read more


    No information; presumed sedentary.  

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Restrictedrange species: present in West Papuan Highlands EBA and in Adelbert and Huon Ranges EBA and in Central Papuan Mountains EBA. Poorly known.... read more

    Recommended citation

    Higgins, P., Christidis, L. & Ford, H. (2020). Cinnamon-browed Honeyeater (Melidectes ochromelas). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 27 January 2020).