Rainbow Bee-eaters and a Burrow Duck

To: "Canberra Birds" <>
Subject: Rainbow Bee-eaters and a Burrow Duck
From: "John Layton" <>
Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2008 22:04:20 +1100
Sunday morning, on a property near Wagga, I watched at least 15 Rainbow Bee-eaters perching on and hawking from dead branches of a River Redgum. Maybe a pre-migratory marshalling? It was 7:30AM and the sun was still climbing so the rainbow birds' colours were beautifully highlighted. Words from Glen Campbell's Galveston came to mind:
and watch her sea birds flashin' in the sun
Yes, they're not sea birds, but the words have long been with me since I first heard the song back in 1969 in a strange, faraway place.
Walked past a warren looking for rabbits, but no bunnies were abroad. Then I saw a little head poking out of a burrow, followed by a longish neck. Before I could say, "Joe Blake!" the rest of the critter emerged, scuttled forward and took wing. It was a Pacific Black Duck. I watched for some minutes, but no more quackers came forth. Knelt at the burrow entrance and listened a while but all was quiet. I haven't checked any references yet but can't recall anything about Pacific Black Ducks going underground. However, I seem to remember hearing/reading of Grey Teal nesting in burrows. Incidentally, the warren was about 300m from the Murrumbidgee River.
John Layton
<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the Canberra Ornithologists Group mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the list contact David McDonald, list manager, phone (02) 6231 8904 or email . If you can not contact David McDonald e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU