Hollows vs built nests

To: 'Philip Veerman' <>, 'COG bird list' <>
Subject: Hollows vs built nests
From: Dr David Rosalky <>
Date: Tue, 26 Oct 2021 01:11:12 +0000

I agree with you about the timescale.  The birds would appear to be investing in their breeding success about ten years hence.  They must have got real estate advice.




From: Philip Veerman <>
Sent: Tuesday, 26 October, 2021 12:02 PM
To: 'Dr David Rosalky' <>; 'COG bird list' <>
Subject: RE: [Canberrabirds] Hollows vs built nests


The one I saw a pair of galahs fly into one eucalypt tree, the second to arrive bit off a little branch about 15 cm long with several leaves. It walked along the branch to sit right beside the partner and did a lot of head bobbing. It then flew about 100 metres direct to another tree where there was a hollow spout. It appeared to try to push the little branch into the hole but was not successful and the branch fell down outside. The “ringbark” idea you mention sounds to me like another one of those dopey nonsense suggestions that is an idea looking too hard to find a rationale. What is the time scale for that to work? Cockatoos are naturally chewers of branches anyway – and houses for that matter.




From: Dr David Rosalky
Sent: Tuesday, 26 October, 2021 11:52 AM
To: 'Philip Veerman'; 'COG bird list'
Subject: RE: [Canberrabirds] Hollows vs built nests


Thanks Philip


Yes, I looked at Joe’s book and at HANZAB.  Lots of “predominantly” and similar words but not definitive. 


I also saw a galah taking a spray of leaves into a nest hollow.  HANZAB suggests more to do with preventing parasites than lining the nest.  That pair was active this morning.  One of them was chewing wood continuously for a long period.  A local I was talking  to said that the bird does this to ringbark the tree and thereby to induce greater hollowing of the nest space.  Really?





From: Canberrabirds <> On Behalf Of Philip Veerman
Sent: Tuesday, 26 October, 2021 11:21 AM
To: 'COG bird list' <>
Subject: Re: [Canberrabirds] Hollows vs built nests


Joe Forshaw’s book does not appear to mention it, at least not in the introduction. Though he does mention Galahs using small leafy branches to line the nest hollow. (I happened to see this on Sunday morning.) Of peripheral relevance is that the lovebirds of Africa build a nest, as does this one (below extract from Wikipedia).



The monk parakeet (Myiopsitta monachus), also known as the Quaker parrot, is a species of true parrot in the family Psittacidae. It is a small, bright-green parrot with a greyish breast and greenish-yellow abdomen. Its average lifespan is 20–30 years. It originates from the temperate to subtropical areas of Argentina and the surrounding countries in South America


The monk parakeet is the only parrot that builds a stick nest, in a tree or on a man-made structure, rather than using a hole in a tree. This gregarious species often breeds colonially, building a single large nest with separate entrances for each pair. In the wild, the colonies can become quite large, with pairs occupying separate "apartments" in nests that can reach the size of a small automobile. These nests can attract many other tenants including birds of prey such as the spot-winged falconet (Spiziapteryx circumcincta), ducks such as the yellow-billed teal (Anas flavirostris), and even mammals. Their five to 12 white eggs hatch in about 24 days.



From: Canberrabirds On Behalf Of Dr David Rosalky
Sent: Monday, 25 October, 2021 10:38 PM
To: COG bird list
Subject: [Canberrabirds] Hollows vs built nests


Do any Australian parrots or cockatoos build their own nest?

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