Butcherbird in Holder

To: <>
Subject: Butcherbird in Holder
From: "Sue Beatty" <>
Date: Fri, 10 Feb 2012 16:31:41 +1100

Thanks Phillip, Martin, Peter, Geoffrey, Jean, Margaret (about the Rosella question) and everybody. I’ll certainly be looking out for Butcherbirds from now on. Yes, what I saw definitely was one and not a SBB, although I’ve had those the last few days as well. The changing garden bird populations are really fascinating. Another bird that I’d never seen in my garden until this year but now see regularly are Scrub Wrens. I wonder to what extent the decline of the once dominant Indian Mynas is a factor? Changing climate? But I guess that could be a whole separate topic.





From: Philip Veerman [
Sent: Friday, 10 February 2012 2:55 PM
To: 'Geoffrey Dabb'; ; 'martin butterfield'
Subject: [canberrabirds] Butcherbird in Holder


Sure the SBB is a great mimic. I don't specifically remember one way or the other about I wonder if Philip has ever had SBowbds mimicking GButbds.  There are limits to this head. But they may well do. In this case Sue did say she saw the bird. I take that on face value. A SBB is quite different in shape and colour from a GBB. So on the basis of it being seen, I reckon we can exclude the idea of SBowbds mimicking GButbds in this case.


Another point: in mentioning GBS data on the species. I apologise that I sent that message before noticing Martin's graph sent to the list. This showed the evidence very clearly. I am not surprised and it supports what I thought was happening. Thanks for that.


My point in part still remains as to why wouldn't this data have been included in BOCG V2? It surely was worth showing and surely must have been noticed. I don't know why so much of BOCG V2 is still tied to the edited rather crude draft that I wrote in 1999 for BOCG V1, when that trend for that species had not really started - if indeed that is the reason. 




-----Original Message-----
From: Geoffrey Dabb [
Sent: Friday, 10 February 2012 12:45 PM
Subject: FW: [canberrabirds] Butcherbird in Holder

Yes, this is a typical mover-through.  I wonder if we can be always absolutely sure the call IS a GBbd, in view of the possibility of a mimicking bowerbird.  The call seems to invite mimicry, and I’ve got a few of the latter moving through now but revealing their presence with a typical “spk-SCHERRL-sprzzt”, with the SCHERRL being a rich throaty whistle.  I wonder if Philip has ever had SBowbds mimicking GButbds.  Perhaps not the mimicking season, though.


From: Philip Veerman %5b
Sent: Friday, 10 February 2012 11:41 AM
To: 'Sue Beatty'
Subject: RE: [canberrabirds] Butcherbird in Holder


Hi Sue,


Have confidence. No need to doubt this. Not unusual although it was less common in past years. GBS records show them to have been increasing in Canberra over the years. The GBS Report shows this. Even to my surprise, with more recent data, BOCG V2 doesn't say anything about an increase (or change) in numbers - only the obvious, that it is less common than Magpies etc! 




-----Original Message-----
From: Sue Beatty %5b
Sent: Friday, 10 February 2012 8:42 AM
To: 'COG List'
Subject: [canberrabirds] Butcherbird in Holder

Hey All,


A Grey? Butcherbird just passed through my GBS area! I don’t think I’ve seen one here before. I only got a quick look at it and would say it was probably an immature, but that cackly call is hard to miss. Is this unusual or are they all over the place and I just haven’t been paying attention?


Sue Beatty


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