It is very easy when writing about birds to ignore the birds you see most often and there are more examples than I care to mention! When we planted trees, shrubs and bushes in our garden in Broome we aimed to have as many native plants as possible to maximize the number of species of birds that we would attract. The above photo shows one of our native plants-a Hakea-in full flower and the nectar attracts all species of honeyeaters. The other big factor in attracting birds to your garden in such a hot climate is plenty of water for birds to both drink and bathe in. The honeyeaters are mainly attracted to our flowering natives and we aim to always have something in flower for them. The first honeyeater that we hear each morning is the White-gaped Honeyeater, which always appears to be awake and vocal before most other birds around where we live. The first honeyeaters to enter our garden each morning are the Brown Honeyeaters and they are also the most vocal when a Brown Goshawk enters the garden with their tut-tutting! They enter in quite large numbers of up to two dozen especially on very hot days. The second honeyeater to enter the garden each day is invariably the Singing Honeyeater, though in smaller numbers. Not only are they attracted to the flowering plants, but they come in to have a drink and enjoy the water we provide. It is also important to provide something in the water to enable the birds to judge the depth, because they will then be less cautious and enter it to bathe.

Singing Honeyeater

Singing Honeyeater (4)

Singing Honeyeater (2)

Singing Honeyeater (3)

Singing Honeyeater enjoying our water!

In among all these honeyeaters we get the occasional Rufous-throated Honeyeater and also the Black-chinned Honeyeater. Almost all birds enter our garden via our “pretend power line“!

Written by Clare M
Clare and her husband, Grant, have lived permanently in Broome, Western Australia since 1999 after living in various outback locations around Western Australia and Darwin. She has lived in the Middle East and the United States and traveled extensively in Europe. She monitors Pied Oystercatchers breeding along a 23km stretch of Broome's coastline by bicycle and on foot. She chooses not to participate in social media, but rather wander off into the bush for peace and tranquility. Thankfully she can write posts in advance and get away from technology!