Riflebirds, bowrebirds and owls -Bunyas

Subject: Riflebirds, bowrebirds and owls -Bunyas
From: <>
Date: Thu, 27 Apr 2006 00:33:30 +0000
Hello Fellow Birders,

Here is an enjoyable experience that occurred on a great trip to Bunya
Mountains yesterday morning and something I enjoyed writing about in my
journal. I hope you too enjoy reading it and forgive any sense of

Having managed to pick up two Russet-tailed Thrush, a Noisy Pitta and the
Sooty Owl up in the depths of the well-known fig in a matter of three hours
at Bunya Mountains, and feeling quite satisfied with my efforts, I headed
back to the picnic area at Dandabah. It was good timing too, for it was
mid-morning by this time and the hoards were rocking-up.
Back at the carpark, I got my scope out and set it up at the picnic table
Bill had told me about and had something to eat, waiting for the male
riflebird to appear in the fig tree. Brush-turkeys immediately came
strolling over looking for handouts. Good luck! Then, I noticed a male Satin
Bowerbird come edging over to the table, watching me with his right eye and
head bent towards me, a dazzling indigo streak running through the sheen of
luminous blue. I knew what he was after, for I had just put down a blue lid
to a drink container. He hopped over watchfully, grabbed the lid and was
off. Incredible! Nothing was seen of him before then, yet as soon as the lid
came out there he was. It was as though he was concealed there on the
threshold of the woodland, watching and waiting for just such an
opportunity. And he wasn?t seen after that either, probably because I was
all out of the colour blue.
When the bowerbird took flight I followed its progress. It had disappeared
amid some vegetation a short distance away behind a wire fence. Believing
there was likely to be a bower somewhere there, I walked over to the area
once I had finished my lunch and sure enough, just two metres or so over the
fence, there was the familiar scattering of bright blue objects. Although a
familiar sight, it was so impressive how he had organised everything; the
darkest blue of all was the rosella feathers, which he had placed on the
flat area in front as a soft platform leading up to the bower entrance. No
tripping over there. And no embarrassing moments. Then, this was the bit I
loved, he had distributed other, larger objects around the sides, as though
to guarantee that the females who came calling didn?t go awkwardly tripping
their way towards the boudoir and the possibility of love-making ending in
tragic comedy. An aerosol lid was placed with great precision on a shelf in
a piece of branch as though it was designed for just this piece of
decoration. He had a real flair for the aesthetic. Other pieces of plastic,
mostly bottle and pen lids, were placed with great care also, scattered
around the perimeter in a way that suggested balance and harmony of
composition. I?ll bet the artist is a real hit with the ladies.

Michael Wood

Bounce Back from sickness and injury today.


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