Cacaphonous Christmas and Noisy New Year

To: "'Michael Hunter'" <>, <>
Subject: Cacaphonous Christmas and Noisy New Year
From: "Stephen Ambrose" <>
Date: Mon, 2 Jan 2012 09:50:14 +1100
Hi Michael,

We are experiencing a similar thing in our garden at Ryde (10 km NW of the
Sydney CBD), but with only one fledgling. Our CBC fledged early on New
Year's Eve too and seem to be as equally demanding as your CBCs. However, I
can only imagine the noise of two fledglings with voracious appetites - it
is loud and enduring enough with just one! Our CBC is so demanding and
large, the currawongs feeding it are sometimes knocked off their perch
because the CBC clambers over them in an attempt to find more food. At peak
feeding times, the currawongs are delivering food to the fledgling every 4
to 5 minutes. I've never felt sorry for currawongs until now.  We've heard
adult CBCs in the dawn chorus in and around our garden over the last few
days, but I've only observed an adult feeding the fledgling once, which was
within one hour of fledging time (I actually saw the cuckoo leave the nest
around 10 a.m. on New Year's Eve). So the biological parents appear to be
present in the immediate area, but don't seem to be assisting with the
feeding in a significant way.

I also regard this period as an unforgettable festive season!

Kind regards,

Stephen Ambrose
Ryde, NSW

-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of Michael Hunter
Sent: Sunday, 1 January 2012 6:29 PM
Subject: Cacaphonous Christmas and Noisy New Year

Hi All.

        Our tranquil holiday at Avoca Beach in the Basin has been terribly
disrupted by the far-carrying, piercing, human-baby like screams and begging
of two fledgling Channel-billed Cuckoos, morning and afternoon, letting up
for only an hour or two in the middle of the day. Plus up to five, raucous,
adult CBCs and angry pursuing Currawongs and Noisy Miners flying through the

       The young CBCs are carrying on as I type, they sound like a desperate
human child being strangled very noisily. Their step-parent Currawongs are
frantically trying to shut them up, but even feeding them every four or five
minutes is not enough. The "babies" are fully fledged and flying, follow
their feeders from tree to tree, at one stage a Currawong was chased along
Fairscene Crescent at full speed by one of the "chicks", I still hear one of
them hundreds of metres away, but it keeps coming back. 

       Today is New Years Day, and this has been going on since Christmas
Eve. The squawking is unignorable. Even on overcast and rainy days we are
driven out, to walk away along the beach, or go shopping just to get away
from the noise. 

         Plus begging Magpie babies,young King Parrots chasing and abusing
their parents around the block after being abandoned to the big wide world.

        At about five in the afternoon the local SC Cockatoos add their bit
for about an hour.

        Noisy Miners are a constant, but so relatively low decibel as to be
totally unobtrusive. A couple of Satin Bowerbirds growl around and add
interest. A Scrub Turkey lives in our jungle.(garden), flies up onto the
verandah looking for leftovers. A beautiful bird, black body, bright red
head and very yellow wattle around its neck. The Dollarbird looks good too.

         Two competing Kookaburra choruses wake us at what they think is
dawn, and, the dreaded black night bird Eudynamys scoloacea, also known,
among many expletives, as the Common Koel, is out there as well, day and
night. I can hear it right now.. Fortunately it has been cool enough to keep
the windows closed at night, not that it makes much difference. My wife
actually uses her earplugs,(left over from when I used to snore) to try to
sleep in.,

          An ornithologically unforgettable festive season.  



       (Avoca Beach is on the Central Coast of NSW)


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