Weebill

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Description

Weebill, Smicrornis brevirostris, is Austrlaia's smallest bird, with a tiny size of 8.5cm to 9.5cm. It is a locally nomadic bird, and is seen with a greenish back, with a pale eyebrow and white eye. Pale brown, short, thick bill. Whitish/ yellow throat, bright yellow under parts. Difficult to see in the high canopy, as pairs and small parties move through the foliage foraging. Sharp buzzing contact calls, and a lively ‘wee-bill’ call alert you to their presence.

Feeding Habits

Feeds mainly on:

  • Insects
  • Larvae
  • 'Lerps'

Social, vocal, often in company with other small birds such as thornbills and pardalotes.

Breeding

May-December. The female builds a compact, well-concealed round or pearshaped dome nest with a side opening, using grass and leaves bound with cobwebs, lined with plant down or feathers, attached to slender leafy outer branches. Two-to-three eggs are incubated by the female. Two broods are often raised each year.

Places to Look

  • Dry open eucalypt woodlands
  • Open forest
  • Mallee

Threats

  • Fire
  • Clearing of eucalypt forest

References

NQ Dry Tropics gratefully acknowledges the contribution of Birdlife Townsville (formerly the Townsville Region Bird Observers Club) to the information on this page.

Weebill © Birdlife Townsville 2008

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