Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

Tawny-crowned Honeyeater (Gliciphila melanops)


French: Méliphage à calotte fauve German: Goldscheitel-Honigfresser Spanish: Mielero coronado

Certhia melanops


, 1801,

Nova Wallia Australi = New South Wales, Australia


In past, birds from Kangaroo I separated as race braba and those from Bass Strait islands and E Tasmania as crassirostris, but no significant differences from mainland birds. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • G. m. melanops (Latham, 1801) – SW Western Australia (S from Kalbarri–Geraldton), E across S Australia (largely absent Nullarbor coast and Nullarbor Plain) to SE South Australia including Kangaroo I (and extending N through Flinders Ranges to Wilpena Pound), Victoria, and E coast of New South Wales (except far NE); also islands in Bass Strait (King I, Hunter Is, Furneaux Group; historical records in Kent Group), and E Tasmania.
  • G. m. chelidonia Schodde & Mason, 1999 – NW, W & SW coasts of Tasmania.
  • Descriptive notes

    14–18 cm; male 14·7–22 g, female 14–19 g (nominate). Nominate race is largely grey-brown above, streaked and mottled pale olive-brown on mantle, back... read more


    Song, from perch and in flight, consists of simple, clear, plaintive bell-like or flute-like... read more


    Primarily coastal and semi-arid inland heathland, preferring low (no more than 2 m tall) dry... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly nectar, from wide range of plants (including Banksia, Grevillea, Adenanthos, Xanthorrhoea, ... read more


    Season Jul–Apr, clutches recorded mainly Aug–Nov (78·5% of 70 clutches) and nestlings Aug–Apr; in SW eggs Jul... read more


    Resident over most of range, with some seasonal patterns in occurrence or abundance. For example,... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common; recorded densities of 0·05–1·6 birds/ha at various sites. Range and numbers have decreased at some sites as a... read more

    Recommended citation

    Higgins, P., Christidis, L. & Ford, H. (2020). Tawny-crowned Honeyeater (Gliciphila melanops). 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).