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Spinebill is name given to two members of the Honeyeater family, both in the genus Acanthorhynchus, the name of which means literally "spine bill". They are around 15 centimetres in length, and are coloured black, white and chestnut, with a long, downcurved bill. They are native to Australia, with one species in the east and one in the west. They feed on nectar as well as insects, and live mainly in forests, gardens, and other shrubbery habitats.

A molecular study has shown that the two spinebills are a sister grouping to all other honeyeaters, that is, they diverged earlier than all other species.[1]

Species

References

  1. ^ Driskell, A.C., Christidis, L (2004) Phylogeny and evolution of the Australo-Papuan honeyeaters (Passeriformes, Meliphagidae) Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 31 943–960

External links

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