A short lunchtime ramble along Mia Mia Track today sprung a very pleasant surprise – a male Scarlet Honeyeater Myzomela sanguinolenta! This is my first sighting of this beautiful small honeyeater in this part of Victoria.
The bird was in the company of a mixed flock of other nectar feeders – White-naped, Fuscous and Yellow-faced Honeyeaters and Silvereyes feeding amongst the ornamental eucalypt plantation [location]. Records of Scarlet Honeyeaters this far west are few and far between, although one was seen with the Regent Honeyeater spotted near the Whispering Gums Motel some years back and there were a couple of records in 2010 near Maryborough. Their numbers seem to be on the increase around Melbourne in recent years but this may be a result of more keen observers. The nearest regular reports I am aware of are from the Heathcote-Graytown National Park.
They are a truly magnificent honeyeater and I feel quite lucky and privileged to see one so close to home.