Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

White-gaped Honeyeater (Stomiopera unicolor)


French: Méliphage unicolore German: Wulsthonigfresser Spanish: Mielero unicolor

Ptilotis unicolor


, 1843,

Port Essington, Northern Territory, Australia


Sister-species of S. flava#R. Monotypic.


N Australia from Melville I and N Western Australia (Kimberley Division and offshore islands) E throughout Top End of Northern Territory (S to upper Victoria R in SW and to Barkly Tableland in SE), and on Groote Eylandt, to N Queensland (S to near Proserpine; occasional records farther S, e.g. Mackay, and on Atherton Tableland).

Descriptive notes

Male 19–22 cm, 27·8–40·4g; female 17–20 cm, 25–33 g. Plumage is plain dark olive-brown to greyish-olive above, and slightly paler and... read more


Song loud and ringing or fluting, three similar phrases separated by interval of c. 0·5... read more


Mainly riparian forests and woodlands, frequently riverine or swamp associations dominated by... read more

Food and feeding

Diet includes nectar, fruit, seeds and invertebrates (mainly insects, also spiders). Usually forages in dense vegetation, from canopy to... read more


Probably throughout year, and recorded in all months except Jun near Darwin (Northern Territory); clutches Jul–Mar. Nest built by... read more


Resident. No evidence of nomadism, but possibly moves locally to exploit flowering; at Victoria... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. No estimates of total population; recorded densities of up to 2 birds/ha. Formerly considered common at Mt Isa, in NW Queensland, but now recorded... read more

Recommended citation

Higgins, P., Christidis, L. & Ford, H. (2020). White-gaped Honeyeater (Stomiopera unicolor). 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 25 February 2020).