Black butcherbird attacking sunbird nests

To: "inger vandyke" <>, <>
Subject: Black butcherbird attacking sunbird nests
From: "Mason, Tiffany" <>
Date: Fri, 12 May 2006 11:00:49 +1000
Hi Inger & Birding-Ausers,

You're right, Inger, it is a dilemma, but I think that the real problem
is that we feel this overwhelming impusle to protect the lovely Sunbird
from the wicked Black Butcherbird...obviously, it's a hard thing to do
when you are enjoying the company of the former, but the Butcherbird may
have young to feed as well, and are you really helping the Sunbirds if
you shelter them from all predators?  The young might not develop a
sense of predator awareness and the adults may get complacent in their
choice of nest site, so causing your folks more worry next season!

Good luck, all the same.

Bathurst, 200km west of Sydney.

-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of inger vandyke
Sent: Friday, 12 May 2006 8:53 AM
Subject: Black butcherbird attacking sunbird nests

Hi All,

Just a quick query to mine your collective knowledge.

My parents in Cairns have had regularly nesting Sunbirds around their

My mother told me that they've been flying around again looking for a
suitable nesting spot.  My parents, over the years, have co-parented
sunbird chicks that have nested in their house by sheltering them from
predators and keeping anything from disturbing them.

They have a problem now though.  Black Butcherbirds are in their
neighbourhood and they tend to raid the Sunbird nest for chicks.  They
very cunning, fast and seem to appear out of nowhere.  My mother now
and paints outside to keep an eye on their Sunbird nest until the adults
their chicks out so she can scare the Butcherbirds away.  This is a bit
restricting though.

Do any of you have any suggestions to scare off butcherbirds but not
sunbirds so my mother isn't housebound while they raise their chicks?

It's an interesting dilemma because you would think a picture of a
like bird on the window would also scare the sunbirds.

Any ideas/suggestions would be greatly appreciated.




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