Katoomba Hobby

Subject: Katoomba Hobby
From: Carol Probets <>
Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2001 21:23:07 +1100
G'day all,

It was only last week I was telling someone, after hearing of a possible
sighting of an Australian Hobby at Medlow Bath (5km NW of Katoomba), that
in my experience this species is quite uncommon in the upper Blue
Mountains. During 15 years I'd only ever seen a hobby once in the Katoomba

Well, this afternoon I happened to look out my front window and notice that
there seemed to be a lot of feathers drifting down from the sky! I
immediately thought that the local Peregrine had made a catch, so I grabbed
my binoculars and went outside. To my great surprise, there in the tree
beside my front gate was an Australian Hobby furiously plucking the
feathers from a smallish bird it was holding in its talons. From where I
stood the prey appeared plain grey/brown and was not readily identifiable.
I kept watching, trying to get a better view, but within a minute a Pied
Currawong came along, glared at the hobby and then chased it off the branch
and over the treetops until it disappeared down the hill, still carrying
its prey.

I gathered up all the feathers from the ground. Most were plain brown or
off-white but it was the white-tipped dark tail feathers, with just a
couple of small red feathers attached, that provided the answer. The prey
had to be a Red-whiskered Bulbul. Not surprising as there are plenty of
those around here!


Carol Probets
Blue Mountains NSW

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