"lyrebird" in NT

Subject: "lyrebird" in NT
From: "John Leonard" <>
Date: Sun, 15 Aug 2004 01:56:49 +0000
I'm reading a book about Aboriginal astromony (the Wardaman people from Victoria River, NT).

It's not a very good book because of the prolix style and poor presentation. One annoying feature is that the Elder's Aboringal English is quoted verbatim and then his bird-names are taken over without explanation. This isn't a problem when he talks about Bush Turkeys (Bustards), Long-tailed Pheasants (Pheasant Coucals) &c, but what is a "Lyrebird". (Obviously some ill-informed English-speaker told the Wardaman that the English name for a particular bird was a Lyrebird, and the name stuck in Aboriginal English for that area). But what is it? All I can think of is Pied Butcherbird (beautiful song, mimicry).

Any other suggestions?


John L

John Leonard (Dr)
PO Box 243, Woden, ACT 2606, Australia

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