Migrating Honeyeaters

To: COG-L <>
Subject: Migrating Honeyeaters
From: "" <>
Date: Mon, 8 Apr 2019 06:47:57 +0000

After several days of not much action on the Jerrabomberra flyway we have had two really big days.  Yesterday the first flock passed over our house at just before 9 am.  There was flocks passing frequently all day with the last sighted just as the sun set.  Then this morning there were huge numbers passing over from 8:45am.  I grabbed my camera and wandered out to the edge of suburbia to where I could observe across an open paddock with two old willow trees in the centre that the birds use as a “stepping stone”.  Honeyeaters were streaming past.  I saw three flocks (more streams I suppose) of over 1000 birds and several of between 400 and 700. Early in the piece a large flock descended on the willows and pandemonium erupted.  Honeyeater exploded from the trees in every direction.  I stood and watched for some time and the cause was soon revealed.  THREE Hobbies had located themselves in the trees.  They were perched low down and when a flock of HE arrived one of the Hobbies would fly up over the tree and pluck a HE from the top of the tree, where they usually perched, before diving back into the tree, presumably for a quick snack.  The rest of the HE would explode away.  This went on for some 40 minutes.  I had initially assumed only one Hobby but the frequency of the attacks led me to investigate further, so I jumped the fence. This revealed the three Hobbies.  I gave away the observations when the wind increased and the flow of birds slowed down at about 10am.  Within the hour the action had picked up and there have been good numbers passing until the action died down at about 3:30.  I took a lot of photos to get an idea of flock composition which revealed about 20-25% White-naped with the majority Yellow-faced.  I did see a lone White-eared and two Red Wattlebirds.





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