Reading the recent postings on bird bath
observations made me think about my shallow above ground bath.
I get so much enjoyment watching the comings and
goings of various species. I even get excited watching blackbirds do their
rotating 'scrubbing up' act.
It is also interesting observing how within a
species each individual behaves in a different way when doing its ablutions.
Small groups of Red Wattlebirds, Brown Thornbills, Singing Honeyeaters and
others all offer great excuses to sit and watch.
Yesterday I watched a group of Brown Thornbills at
the bath. The first 5 came in and were then replaced at frequent intervals
by others waiting in the trees nearby. However the actions of the 5 were
all totally different.
One very nervously jumped in then out again
straight away, another stood on the edge and dipped in a couple of
times. A couple did 'laps' across the bath. The fifth dipped
in and out, at least fifteen times, staying in a little longer each
time and looking more and more like a drowned rat.
Even though I have a Golden Whistler in the garden
on a daily basis last week I observed for the first time one using the
bath. And whilst I have Silvereyes
regularly in the garden I have never seen one at the bath. Maybe if I
spend even more time sitting and watching they will also perform for
Then there the birds that once 'resident' in the
bath will ignore and frustrate attempts by other species to use the bath.
My Australian Magpies, Grey Butcherbirds, Little Ravens and even Spotted
Turtle-doves are all masters of this anti-social behaviour.
Must go - the Eastern Spinebills are getting
ready for their ablutions.