I witnessed this today in Fisher. I have some footage of the koel and rhe wattlebirds, but probably not of the feeding. (Mobile phone photos and video) They left the constantly squawking big chick to squawk for half an hour or so and didn't
seem to want to feed as they knew I was there.
Very interesting to observe. I stood in a most awkward position for at least half an hour. Its voice was breaking a little, 2 more mature chirps over that time.
The feeding wattle bird came really close to me, right above my head looking at me. .
During the long standing session, I could hear the wattle bird in the tree and it was also making soft half wattlebird calls as if beckoning it away to a tall tree behind. There was another wattle bird and eventually came back with 2 or 3 more
wattle birds and managed to get the koel to move to the tree behind where they could feed it.
I'm pretty sure the wattle birds were 'muscling in' on me, that was after the koel moved and I was then under the food tree, 2 of them came very close to me, climbing down branches etc. Right next to me and looking at me.
It sounded as though there was another chick but I am wondering if that was a wattlebird imitating a koel to encourage it to move. The wattlebirds were definitely calling to it with their soft half calls.
It's odd the wattlebirds all banded together to get this plump chick safely fed. Surely they know it's not the same species? I'm concerned about this koel expansion., will it impact red wattlebird population ?
I've heard a fair bit of this constant squawking over the last week and now I know what the female sounds like (a male koel with laryngitis) I believe they've been colonising the surrounding streets over the last few months.