Red Wattlebird

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Red Wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata). Photo: Russell Best — Natureshare

The Red Wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata) is a large, noisy honeyeater. This pretty bird can be found in local parks and gardens.

This bird is named for the hanging pink/red lobes or ‘wattles’ on the side of its neck. Its body feathers are grey-brown, with white streaks and a yellow belly.

The Red Wattlebird lives in forests, woodlands and gardens where it enjoys food-bearing plants. It feeds on nectar, which it obtains by probing flowers with its thin curved bill. Some insects are also eaten, taken either from foliage or caught in mid-air.

There are many local indigenous shrubs that can help attract and protect the Red Wattlebird.

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Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata). Photo: Russell Best — Natureshare

One of these is the Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata). It is an elegant medium to large shrub and a valuable nectar source for wildlife, including the Red Wattlebird.

This shrub prefers good drainage, but tolerates soils that are wet in winter and dry in summer. It also accepts windy situations and grows in full sun or partial shade.

Pruning encourages attractive woolly brown new growth and it can also be a screening plant.

Height: one to five metres
Width: one to three metres
Flowers: September–April
Growing: moderately fast growing

Your local indigenous nursery will be able to assist you with other indigenous plants that also help attract local native birds.