Black Butcherbird

To: <>
Subject: Black Butcherbird
From: "Mangrove Man Tours" <>
Date: Sun, 11 Jan 2004 10:32:08 +1000
Have just spent the morning on the Mossman River, where we saw something quite interesting that you might like to here about.
We were sitting quietly watching a platypus feeding along the edge, when a black butcherbird flew on to a branch nearby to watch the platypus. After a couple of moments the bird moved in for a closer look and then swooped at the platypus. There was no contact and the bird did not go far away.
A few moments later the black butcherbird flew in and pecked the platypus on the back of the neck. The platypus went under and the butcherbird flew to a branch nearby. The platypus was up again in less than one minute and the butcherbird swooped again, and there was no contact again. After another couple of minutes the butcherbird flew off and the platypus continued feeding.
We watched the platypus for about twenty five minutes and towards the end of that time another butcherbird came and repeated the whole process (minus the contact with the platypus). It may have been the same bird or it may have been a different individual.
All this happened only about five kilometres from the ocean, in an area that I have not seen platypus before. Perhaps the butcherbirds have never seen one before and were just curious.
Any comments about this sighting would be most appreciated.
Peter Cooper
Mangrove Man Tours
Mossman River
40 982 066
0409 982 066
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