Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-browed Honeyeater (Melidectes rufocrissalis)


French: Méliphage de Reichenow German: Reichenowhonigfresser Spanish: Mielero cejiamarillo
Other common names: Yellow-browed Melidectes

Melirrhophetes rufocrissalis


, 1915,

Schraderberg, Sepik Mountains = Schrader Range, north-east New Guinea


Sometimes treated as conspecific with M. belfordi (which see). Race thomasi suggested to be of hybrid origin, on basis of its black forehead; originally described under name gilliardi, but that name was preoccupied. Precise geographical limits of races complicated by extensive hybridization with M. belfordi. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • M. r. rufocrissalis (Reichenow, 1915) – Central Range of New Guinea from E Star Mts and Hindenburg Range E to Bismarck Range, Mt Hagen and Kubor Mts.
  • M. r. thomasi Diamond, 1969 – S slopes of Eastern Highlands from at least Okapa to Mt Karimui and in Morobe Province (in Aseki area).
  • Descriptive notes

    26–29 cm; male 74–84 g and two females 61 g and 69 g (nominate); male 72·7–96·5 g and female 56–72·7 g (thomasi, Mt... read more


    Noisy. Common vocalizations include a series of “caw” notes, either piercing and nasal... read more


    Lower and middle montane forest, forest edge and secondary growth; also gardens. In Schrader Mts,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet includes insects, nectar and fruit. Usually in middle and upper storeys, often foraging high in canopy; commonly seen in flowering or... read more


    Nestlings recorded early Oct, fledglings mid-Jul and early Feb, and unspecified breeding in Apr. Nest a woven open basket of fine grass and... read more


    Resident; no indication of any movements.  

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Restrictedrange species: present in Central Papuan Mountains EBA. General status unclear; said to be fairly common to common, but claimed also that... read more

    Recommended citation

    Higgins, P., Christidis, L. & Ford, H. (2020). Yellow-browed Honeyeater (Melidectes rufocrissalis). 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).