Silvereyes on Aloe plicatilis flowers

Silvereye on Aloe plicatilis (1)

There was a small group of silvereyes in a flowering fan aloe (Aloe plicatilis) outside my kitchen window this morning. You’d think a short beak and a long flower could make it difficult to get the nectar out. But they seem to know that they can go into the flower from the side as you can see in the next photo.

Silvereye on Aloe plicatilis (3)

I have read that tui and bellbirds will also feed on these flowers but I haven’t seen the tuis in my garden on them yet. I have seen bellbirds feeding on Aloe flowers on Whangaparaoa Peninsula north of Auckland though. There were a lot of bellbirds around that year and it seemed they fed with their beak up the tube of the flower. They didn’t need to take the shortcut, having a longer beak than silvereyes!

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