2010-02-20 12-21-39 Noisy Miner - IMG_1955
The Noisy Miner (Manorina melanocephala) is a bird common to the eastern and southern states of Australia. It ranges from northern Queensland along the eastern coast to South Australia and Tasmania. Its typical diet consists of nectar, fruit and insects, and occasionally it feeds on small reptiles or amphibians. Somewhat opportunistic, the Miner will also feed on grains and can be seen foraging in grasslands although its normal habitat is scrub and woodlands. It has adjusted to urban areas far better than most other birds, given their preference for shorter grasses and thinner underbrush. An extremely territorial and gregarious bird that lives in groups or colonies of 4-12, the Miner will aggressively defend an area against all invaders, harassing and chasing away larger invaders such as Magpies, Currawongs or Crows. They will attack smaller birds inside their territory, particularly in suburban environments that favor them, and thus deplete local biodiversity by affecting what predators and insects prosper. Their 'Noisy' name is obvious when encountered, for their alarmed warning shrills are echoed across the colony as all members are alerted to your presence. Far softer are their social, talkative clicks, peeps and squeaks.