mimicry, a summary and some questions

To: "Philip Veerman" <>, "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: mimicry, a summary and some questions
From: "Greg" <>
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2006 23:13:09 +1000
Hi Philip,

Being a bird bander I have witnessed first hand the vocal mimicry of birds being handled for banding. This mimicry is interesting because it is 'whisper mimicry, a very soft call that wouldn't be heard more than a few metres away. I know I have heard it from a few different species but the one that comes to mind is the Buff-rumped Thornbill. A male Mistletoebird (possibly more than one) that visits our garden is also an excellent 'whisper mimic'.

I have also had a female plumaged Golden Whistler visiting during this winter and it was giving a fairly good imitation of the call of the Buff-rumped Thornbill, mixed in with its own subdued non-breeding calls. I also heard a Whistler doing this last year, possibly the same bird.


Greg Clancy

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