Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

Little Wattlebird (Anthochaera chrysoptera)


French: Méliphage à gouttelettes German: Zimtflügel-Honigfresser Spanish: Mielero alirrufo

Merops chrysopterus


, 1801,

Nova Hollandia = Port Jackson, New South Wales, Australia


Often considered conspecific with A. lunulata. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. c. chrysoptera (Latham, 1801) – coastal SE Australia on and E of tablelands of Great Divide from SE Queensland (Dawes Range) S, including Fraser I, Stradbroke I and other islands, to SE Victoria, and W through SE South Australia to Adelaide.
  • A. c. halmaturina (Mathews, 1912) – Kangaroo I, off South Australia.
  • A. c. tasmanica (Mathews, 1912) – N & E Tasmania (and scattered records in SW & W and inland).
  • Descriptive notes

    27–35 cm; male 57–85 g and female 44–82 g (nominate), male 76–95 g and female 55–63 g (tasmanica), male 75–82g (halmaturina... read more


    Noisy, especially in spring-summer, but calls throughout year with typically loud and raucous,... read more


    Mainly sclerophyllous heathlands, shrublands, forests and woodlands, often dominated by Banksia... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet mainly nectar (from wide range of plants but especially Banksia and Eucalyptus), but also takes manna, fruit,... read more


    Season mainly spring-summer; eggs recorded in all months, most (58%) early Sept to late Dec; usually two, sometimes three, attempts per... read more


    Resident over most of mainland range (nominate race), where present throughout year at most sites,... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not assessed. Probably not globally threatened. Common. No estimates of global numbers; recorded densities of 0·09–0·32 birds/ha. In both mainland... read more

    Recommended citation

    Higgins, P., Christidis, L. & Ford, H. (2020). Little Wattlebird (Anthochaera chrysoptera). 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).