This is a piece I did for Losing Altitude - a collab aimed at raising awareness for the plight of endangered birds. It's a mix of paper cutting and quilling. All the feathers were hand cut. You won't see it here but each feather was then embossed using a scribe to give a typical feather pattern.
The Helmeted Honeyeater (Lichenostomus melanops cassidix)
is a critically endangered species endemic to Victoria, our only endemic bird. It's a subspecies of yellow-tufted honey eater. The helmeted honey eater gets its name from the helmet-like tuft of yellow feathers on it's crown, a distinguishing feature of the species. Much of the urgency around its conservation surrounds the fact that it's Victoria's bird emblem, and letting an emblematic species go extinct doesn't bode well.
It's threatened by all the usual suspects: loss of habitat, habitat degradation, introduced species and anthropogenic climate change.
I depicted the pair here with a stylised representation of the manuka scrub (Leptospermum scoparium). This plant is found in the Yellingbo </span>Nature Conservation Reserve, the only place the honeyeaters are found. It's typical of the type of fauna the honeyeaters use as both habitat and food.
Despite their name, the consumption of 'honey', (that is nectar, plant sap and honeydew) only makes up a small part of their diet. Most of it is made up for invertebrates, and parents will almost exclusively feed their chicks insects.
If you'd like to know more about these guys you'll find the recovery plan here