Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-plumed Honeyeater (Ptilotula ornata)


French: Méliphage orné German: Gelbscheitel-Honigfresser Spanish: Mielero adornado

Ptilotis ornatus


, 1838,

Swan River, south-west Western Australia


Sister to P. penicillata#R. Monotypic.


SW Australia (mostly S of 30° S but largely excluding far SW) E to Eyre Bird Observatory (scattered records N of this range), and from E Nullarbor Plain and S Great Victoria Desert E in South Australia (including Eyre Peninsula, Flinders Ranges) to The Coorong and Murray Mallee and to NW & NC Victoria and C New South Wales.

Descriptive notes

14–18·5 cm; male 16–22·1g, female 12·2–21·1 g, unsexed 11–22 g. When breeding, top of head is yellow-olive, grading to... read more


Can be very noisy; one of first species to vocalize in morning, and heard sporadically through day... read more


Mallee eucalypt woodlands, usually with sparse understorey of Leptospermum, Acacia... read more

Food and feeding

Arthropods (insects, also spiders and mites), nectar (e.g. of Eucalyptus, Banksia, some Epacridaceae) and lerp, manna and... read more


Recorded in all months, apparently least often in mid-summer and late autumn; most clutches (69%) Oct to early Dec. Possible instances of... read more


Largely resident over much of range, but at least some local movements. In detailed study at Mt... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Locally common. Recorded densities of up to 3·6 birds/ha. Population N of Dubbo, in New South Wales, possibly isolated. Declined in... read more

Recommended citation

Higgins, P., Christidis, L. & Ford, H. (2019). Yellow-plumed Honeyeater (Ptilotula ornata). 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 12 December 2019).