Fwd: Re: [canberrabirds] Better news

To: "" <>
Subject: Fwd: Re: [canberrabirds] Better news
From: Rod Mackay <>
Date: Mon, 11 Nov 2019 12:50:21 +0000

From: Rod Mackay <>
To: Geoffrey Dabb <>

Also on the better news front .. Inspired by Jack's excellent Sunday
morning Nest Workshop I decided late Sunday afternoon to see what
Narrabundah Hill had to offer - and despite the strong wind I wasn't

I saw many of the species we encountered during the morning workshop and
added two new species to the day's tally. a female Satin Bowerbird and a
pair of Jacky Winters - I hadn't seen a JW in the ACT until I saw a pair
last Wednesday at Namadgi Visitors Centre so to follow up so quickly
with another pair was quite amazing.

The real highlight was provided as I ambled down from the trig point to
the north western corner.  A Grey Butcherbird shot past me low down
under the overhanging pines, less than a metre above the ground, rising
up out of sight. Before I had the chance to see where it had gone it was
back and perched on a fallen branch only about 5 metres from where I was
standing.  Well, despite the hard times this chap had no need for a
little mince flinging!  From somewhere on the log it produced a
previously hunted lizard or skink and proceeded to ... I won't go too
much into the gory details, suffice to say that in between alternately
impaling its prey on a spike, then thrashing it about like a small rag
doll it had a hearty meal.  I watched for about 10 minutes when with
full bill it took of again and this time I managed to see it rise to a
nest about half way up one of the pines. Two eager mouths were quickly
fed then it was back to position and tucking in again. Perhaps because
of the wind I didn't hear any begging sounds from the chicks.  Over the
course of about 25 - 30 minutes this sequence was completed four more
times before, having disposed of the last morsel, it took of to sun
itself on a branch in the last of the afternoon sunshine.

Re the lizard. I obviously didn't get a close look, not sure about the
length but it seemed  slightly thicker than a finger, with lengthwise
(as opposed to banded) black and yellow stripes. Any ideas re species?



On 11/11/2019 12:55 PM, Geoffrey Dabb wrote:
> In the absence of much in the way of local news I report good progress
> this morning by the butcherbird family on the Knob.  Three fledglings
> are huddling together in the green depths of a shrubby oak with a fourth
> (right) about a metre lower down.  Surely, I thought, given the hard
> conditions, a justifiable occasion for a little mince-flinging. The
> mince is lightly rolled on the ground beforehand, which is how they seem
> to like it.  The adults catch the mince and store it in a fork before
> relaying fragments to the young.  The upper fledgling has a grip on the
> bill of a sibling, expressing the view that the grippee has been fed
> enough for the time being.
> A small bird perched on a tree branch Description automatically generated

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