birding-aus Commensals - another variant

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: birding-aus Commensals - another variant
From: Brian Fleming <>
Date: Tue, 24 Aug 1999 12:50:43 +1000
I have seen House Sparrows eating hard seeds which had been regurgitated
by Pied Currawongs. Each pellet consisted  of about six to ten seeds -
probably Pittosporum, in a garden in Ivanhoe, Melbourne. Back in the
horse era, the oats which had passed undigested through horses were one
of the main foods for city sparrows.  (WA has no sparrows because great
care was taken in the building of the trans-Continental Railway to
completely clear one end of the line and its camps of horses and their
fodder, before the WA part of the line was joined up.  Otherwise the
sparrows would have just followed them across.)
  Some years ago at University of Queensland's lake I saw a Little Black
Cormorant swimming along an open part among the waterlilies - on which a
Jacana was scampering about. The cormorant seemed to be following the
jacana and using it as a beater to disturb small fish or other
Anthea Fleming in Melbourne
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