pavlov's bird

Subject: pavlov's bird
From: David McDonald <>
Date: Mon, 20 Jun 2005 09:16:16 +1000 (EST)
Hi all, raining for 24 hours in Thredbo village altho
i believe it has
been snowing up on the mountain, in the dark i can see
the lights of the
groomers out which is a good sign for all you skiiers
up in Canberra.
Believe you will probably have visible snow up there
by Wednesday.

Now for more fascinating bird behaviour from my part
of the world (but
only till Friday when I leave for winter). For most of
summer i've been
hand feeding a pair of Little Ravens (not enough to be
a murder, surely)
and have got to know them quite well, and obviously
they me. If i don't
go out to the balcony within a few minutes of their
arrival on the
balcony, the male will sit on the back of the balcony
chair and knock on
the glass sliding door, much as magpies do in
Canberra. And like
Pavlov's dog, I respond by going out and feeding him.

Yesterday, due to the pouring rain in the village, i
had about a dozen
crimson rosellas on the balcony from time to time and
by mid afternoon
they had eaten all their seed which usually takes all
day to disappear,
often with left overs for the pregnant possum to
finish up once it gets
dark (along with a banana a night!).

Sitting at the laptop, I noticed a tapping on the
glass and looked up to
see a rosella in exactly the same place the raven
usually sits, tapping
on the glass. It took me a minute to work out he was
demanding food!
How's that for 'learnt behaviour'!

By the way, do we have a collective for early skiiers
sitting huddled in
coffee shops?

cheers, Wendy

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