Satin Bowerbird bowers

To: Alan Morris <>
Subject: Satin Bowerbird bowers
From: Syd Curtis <>
Date: Thu, 18 Sep 2003 22:41:29 +1000

Alan Morris wrote, 18 Sep 2003, that he

noticed amongst all the blue items were two that stood out! The first was a bright long yellow crest feather of the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo and the other was white top ring of a condom. A pretty interesting item for a male Satin Bowerbird to carry when he dances round trying to court his female friends! At least he is well prepared!

About 40 years ago Alec Chisholm (a family friend) told me that not infrequently he was asked to take people to see birds in Royal N.P., and this usually included a visit to a Satin Bowerbird's bower.  He said that if there were ladies in the party, he employed the polite fiction of saying something like,  "I don't want to frighten the bird unduly.  Would you all wait here while I walk up very quietly to the bower.  Then he'll see me and move away without being distressed."

What he was really doing, he explained to me, was removing the used condoms!  


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