There is one bird that visitors that come to Broome to bird often seek out and that is the Yellow Chat. It can be found quite reliably if you know the right local areas to look and can be easier to find than photograph! Yellow Chats are endemic to Australia and are small passerines and the male bird is bright yellow with a black crescent across its chest. They can be encountered in small flocks feeding on the grass chasing small insects or beside water chasing insects. On our recent encounter with a male Yellow Chat it was frantically feeding and I was able to get more photos of its back initially than its front! It was running about on short grass and was quite heavily camouflaged despite it being bright yellow.

Yellow Chat-male (2)

Yellow Chat-male (3)

Male Yellow Chat

Waiting for some time the male Yellow Chat moved closer to the water that remained in an ephemeral lake and continued to chase insects. I approached closer and took a few more photos in the hope that some would capture the bright colour of the front of the bird and the black crescent across its breast.

Yellow Chat-male (4)

Yellow Chat-male (5)

Yellow Chat-male (6)

Yellow Chat-male (7)

Yellow Chat-male (8)

Yellow Chat-male (9)

Yellow Chat-male (10)

Male Yellow Chat chasing insects

Other species of chats in Australia include the Orange Chat, which is questionably quite yellow! The Crimson Chat, which is actually close to crimson! If you venture off birding in the south of Australia you will no doubt encounter the White-fronted Chat, which of course has a white front! The Orange Chats were very hard to photograph in Lake Bindegolly National Park, but it is a reliable place to observe them. Crimson Chats are found to the south of Broome and I have had some luck photographing them from a distance. What’s not to like about Chats!?

Crimson Chat

Male Crimson Chat

If you read my post on Eastern Yellow Wagtails last November you would have wondered if I knew what yellow was! They were hardly yellow, but by April this year they were yellow Yellow Chats can be enjoyed year round in the Broome area, so if you love yellow birds then come to Broome! If you love birds then you can’t go far wrong coming to Broome anyway!!

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!