|Noisy friarbird, Philemon corniculatus|
about 15 (see text)
The friarbirds, also called leatherheads, are about 15 species of relatively large honeyeaters in the genus Philemon. Additionally, the single member of the genus Melitograis is called the white-streaked friarbird. Friarbirds are found in Australia, Papua New Guinea, eastern Indonesia and New Caledonia. They eat nectar, insects and other invertebrates, flowers, fruit and seeds.
The friarbirds generally have drab plumage. They derive their name from the circular pattern at the crown of their heads and their neutral coloring, which makes them resemble friars. In many instances their plumage is mimicked by smaller orioles, which use the aggressive nature of the friarbirds to avoid aggression themselves.
The genus Philemon contains the following extant species:
- Meyer's friarbird (Philemon meyeri)
- Brass's friarbird (Philemon brassi)
- Little friarbird (Philemon citreogularis)
- Grey friarbird (Philemon kisserensis)
- Timor friarbird (Philemon inornatus)
- Dusky friarbird (Philemon fuscicapillus)
- Seram friarbird (Philemon subcorniculatus)
- Black-faced friarbird (Philemon moluccensis)
- Tanimbar friarbird (Philemon plumigenis)
- Helmeted friarbird (Philemon buceroides)
- New Guinea friarbird (Philemon novaeguineae)
- New Britain friarbird (Philemon cockerelli)
- New Ireland friarbird (Philemon eichhorni)
- Manus friarbird (Philemon albitorques)
- Silver-crowned friarbird (Philemon argenticeps)
- Noisy friarbird (Philemon corniculatus)
- New Caledonian friarbird (Philemon diemenensis)
Formerly, some authorities also considered the following species (or subspecies) as species within the genus Philemon:
- Black-eared oriole (as Philedon bouroensis)
- Higgins, Peter; Christidis, Les; Ford, Hugh (2008). "Family Meliphagidae (Honeyeaters)". In del Hoyo, Josep; Elliott, Andrew; Christie, David. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 13, Penduline-tits to Shrikes. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. pp. 679–685. ISBN 978-84-96553-45-3.
- Diamond J (1982). "Mimicry of friarbirds by orioles" (PDF). The Auk. 99 (2): 187–196.
- Gill, Frank; Donsker, David (eds.). "Honeyeaters". World Bird List Version 6.1. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 31 January 2016.