PG's Help needed

To: "Birding Aus" <>
Subject: PG's Help needed
From: "Philip A. Veerman" <>
Date: Fri, 27 Jun 2003 12:23:50 +1000
John sent this message (edited):
G'day all,
Could you tell me how to set up a system of recording ... hopefully photographic, as I think it needs to be captured this way ... an event which if all comes off it will shake certain members on this list to ther very ankles and foundations. It will give proof positive that wild birds can in fact learn and adapt to a large array of human made changes to their environment. ................
He also wrote to me:
I'm dashing back to Hastings as my friend has emailed me, ..... on two occasions, he has gone out to his washing line to bring his clothes in to find the head and neck of a small lizard/skink jammed into the tines section of a wooden clothes peg. He says he saw a buthcherbird doing the deed. What is the best way of ensuring that this gets accepted as being an occurance?
I suspect these things are connected, to which I wrote back to John:
This seems like a typical thing for a butcherbird. There is nothing new or astounding about it. More to the point, other things don't do this. That is where the name comes from, hanging meat on hooks, like a butcher. The shrikes of northern hemisphere do the same. The thing is, they don't have strong feet like hawks have, so they need to secure prey on something, while they tear it up.
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