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Bell Miner

This honeyeater (Manorina melanophrys) lives in groups and breeds co-operatively, with 'helpers' assisting in the nesting of other individuals. Sexes appear similar: olive-green, lighter below, with orange-yellow beak, legs and feet. Birds in a colony keep in contact with repeated, short call-notes forming a ringing chorus. They aggressively mob and attempt to drive away all other birds which could compete for food which consists of insects, nectar, honeydew (excreted by insects) and particularly lerp-scales, which are rich in carbohydrates. Real estate agents in some eastern suburbs quote the presence of bell miners as an indication of Melbourne country life.

Ellen M. Mcculloch