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Rainbow Bee-eater

Merops ornatus


The Rainbow Bee-Eater is a spectacular bird. With its green, blue, chestnut and yellow plumage, its slim build, slender curved bill and distinctive streamers that extend from the end of its tail, it is simply beautiful. Bee-Eaters are a familiar sight in many lightly-timbered parts of mainland Australia, where they often perch on fence-posts or overhead wires, then launch after flying insects, flying swiftly, sometimes with rapid twists and turns, before snapping the insect in its bill, and returning to the perch to eat it.


Research featured in the 'State of Australia's Birds 2015' headline and regional reports shows a marked decline for the Rainbow Bee-eater (and some other aerial insectivories) in the East Coast region, where reporting rates for this species have dropped by over 50% in the since 2001.

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Spotted on Oct 24, 2015
Submitted on Nov 23, 2015

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