unfamiliar koel behaviour (to me anyway)

To: 'Ian Fraser' <>, 'Cog line' <>
Subject: unfamiliar koel behaviour (to me anyway)
From: jandaholland--- via Canberrabirds <>
Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2021 22:02:28 +0000

Many thanks Ian, for posting this very interesting observation.


While in my experience Koels can spend quite a bit of time being silent, I couldn’t easily recall any case of two males together doing so.  I could recall an incident when a male and female within 10 m of each other were largely silent for >30 minutes at the back of my house.


As my memory is far from perfect these days I’ve had a bit of a look back at some of my yearly summaries in CBN.


I can find the above example from the 2018-2019 season, but can’t readily find one where 2 males were doing so.  The check back illustrates that the focus has clearly been on recording noisy multiple Koel aggregations/interactions, probably because observers are much more likely to hear and report such incidences.


This doesn’t mean there may be an example hidden somewhere in my notes, but does show the bias in reporting and publishing is clearly towards multiple Koels being noisy, probably because the observers are then much more likely to be alerted to their presence.


Jack Holland


From: Canberrabirds <> On Behalf Of Ian Fraser
Sent: Thursday, 16 December 2021 2:44 PM
To: Cog line <>
Subject: [Canberrabirds] unfamiliar koel behaviour (to me anyway)


After a quiet koel spring in Duffy (as reported here by others around Canberra) things have picked up a bit. Last week two males and a female were indulging in very noisy and frenetic chases in and through the yard, including one heavy collision with a window (no apparent damage to either). We went away for a few days, back now, to find two males sitting in the big paperbark out the front, unusually oblivious to us. Mostly silent, other than an occasional single call, and one brief 'wirra', facing each other only 60cm apart, one slightly higher. Alternately they flicked their wings at each other but no other movement. Of course I don't know how long they'd been doing it when we got home, but they seemed to accept after about 15 minutes that they weren't achieving much and just sat and stared at each other. An hour and a half later they're still doing so; fascinating beasts which constantly surprise me. 


Since we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, it is our duty to furnish it well. Peter Ustinov

Ian Fraser, 
ph: 0427 207 412  


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