Mimicry by Lyrebird
Carol Probets <>
Fri, 13 Apr 2007 23:45:24 +1000
One question: are you familiar with the Superb Lyrebird's own range
of calls? Because one of its own calls which it often performs as
part of its display, is a sound very much like you describe.
L.H. Smith in his book "The Life of the Lyrebird" describes it (I
think) as the "clonk clonk" call.... "which may be given alone or as
part of a more extended call, like 'clonk clonk clickety clickety
click', with dialectal variations, which usually accompanies a series
of jumps from one foot to the other." (p.98)
Here in the Blue Mountains, if you stand at any lookout in winter
you're likely to hear this sound coming up from the valleys, as it
carries such a long way and is sometimes the only part of the
lyrebird's song that can be heard from a great distance.
At 8:50 AM -0400 13/4/07, wrote:
to perpetuate the "myth" of lyrebirds mimcking human-made sounds ...
a couple of years back, my wife and i stood spellbound listening to
a lyrebird not 5m away run through a medley of bird calls
interspersed with a very unnatural sound remarkably like someone
hammering a downpipe or sheet of metal. this was much louder than
the mimicked calls.
it repeated the sequence a few times.
Guided birding in the Blue Mountains & Capertee Valley
PO Box 330
Katoomba NSW 2780
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