October at Violet Town, Vic.

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: October at Violet Town, Vic.
From: Barry McLean <>
Date: Tue, 26 Oct 04 14:25:50 +1000
Hi all,
Spring is fast giving way to summer here.  The lush green growth that greeted 
us when we returned at the start of this month after 2 months away (which has 
seen me mowing/slashing/chipping/etc daily), is quickly drying - most of today 
was spent watering.

First sighting of a Rainbow Bee-eater today but they have been heard flying 
over occasionally since 9th Oct.  Dollarbirds back in the area in the last week 
(in the town) on 14/10) but none on our place yet.

Bird nests found include Superb Fairy-wren, Red-browed Finch, Spotted 
Pardalote, Weebill and Blackbird nests and the Collared Sparrowhawk nest 
mentioned in my previous posting.  Well, I have been sure that they are 
Sparrowhawk, mainly because they have a squareish tail and a long middle toe 
but the Brown Goshawk on the Wingspan cover seems to have a long toe too!

The Red Wattlebirds have returned and are trying to prevent the Yellow-faced, 
White-plumed and  New Holland from using their tree - the White-naped don't try 
to compete and no other H/Es around at present.   The Yf's leave the tree when 
the RW's are around, the NH's keep aware and move well before the RW's get near 
them - and then are quickly back to a new spot.  The W-p's move just before the 
RW gets close and just move a short distance, without actually leaving the 
tree.  The Purple-crowned Lorikeets take little notice and only move when they 
actually get hit.  They then sometimes leave the tree for a few seconds but 
usually land in the tree again immediately.  In this process all except the Red 
Wattlebirds seem, to me, to be getting enough eating time!

The Mistletoebirds have arrived in numbers this week and seem to be everywhere. 
 They enjoy flying through our hand-held sprays and we enjoy watching them.

Finally we have carports and are continually cleaning car mirrors, windows and 
windscreens of bird excreta from our vehicles (putting socks on the mirrors 
reduces the need).  We have been blaming the Superb Fairy-wrens for all of 
this, but late last week I noticed a Spotted Pardalote on the Ute mirror.  I 
approached expecting it to vacate the area (as the wrens do) but it took 
absolutely no notice of my approach until I was about 40cm from it, and then it 
just swapped sides.  I am sure that I could have caught this determined little 
jewel in my hand if I had tried.  In the next hour we went back several times 
because the view was so special and it was always there, so we put a bedspread 
aver the whole cabin.  Five minutes later it was using the aerial as a perch 
and searching for its adversary.


         Barry & Roberta McLean
         03 57981213
         0418 584433
         PO Box 66
         Violet Town  Vic  3669
         36° 40' 3"   145° 43' 11"

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