15 Australian Birds (Episode 4) – 10,000 Birds


“A studying of latest analysis reveals that Australian birds are extra probably than most to eat candy meals, dwell in advanced societies, lead lengthy lives, assault different birds, and be clever and loud.” (Tim Low, “The place Music Started”).

Whereas this may occasionally sound enticing at first, it additionally covers extremely immoral habits. For instance, in a single research, it was discovered that greater than 80 % of the fledgling Australian Magpies born in a territory one yr have been sired by males from outdoors its borders.

One other research through which researchers tried to trace Australian Magpies needed to be modified as a result of the magpies concerned helped one another to take away their monitoring gadgets inside an hour. I suppose if you wish to have affairs with out an excessive amount of hassle out of your social associate, it helps to be clever.

When going to Australia, one of many two birds I needed to see most was the Tawny Frogmouth.

Gisela Kaplan has written a ebook in regards to the species, and the way they appear unperturbed by people: “It’s one in every of their most profitable protection methods. They simply sit and fake to not be there to keep away from interplay.” I generally do that at events, and certainly it often works fairly effectively.

It appears that evidently fairly a couple of zoos preserve Tawny Frogmouths. When these birds breed, this will result in extremely cringeworthy bulletins, for instance from Adelaide Zoo: “We’ve got egg-citing information!”

Clare has additionally written posts on Tawny Frogmouths in Broome for 10,000 Birds.

Birdlife Australia doesn’t attempt to conceal being puzzled over the naming of the Pacific Black Duck: “Regardless of being predominantly brown, the Pacific Black Duck has all the time been generally known as the ‘black duck’. Its solely black plumage is a daring stripe that runs throughout the chook’s face”.

Scientific analysis has discovered that these geese get collectively extra intently in the event you feed them with bread. Within the language of actual scientists, this sounds as follows:

“Though the imply distance between naturally foraging people was 2.51 m, people feeding on bread have been solely 0.25 m aside. This research means that the widespread pastime of supplementary feeding of geese has resulted in new foraging behaviours and patterns inside city populations of Pacific Black Geese, and these findings have implications for city wildlife administration and the
co-existence of individuals and animals in city environments.”

The Australasian Swamphen used to consider itself as a subspecies of the Purple Swamphen however then began a self-improvement program and ended up as a full species. It’s also grateful to not have fairly as dumb a reputation because the Gray-headed Swamphen.

The Willie Wagtail just isn’t actually a wagtail however relatively a fantail. So, one a part of its identify is plainly unsuitable whereas the opposite half is simply foolish.

Apparently, Willie Wagtails are related to a lot of Aboriginal myths – a few of them are described right here. I heard that some Willie Wagtails have been virtually afraid of doing something in any respect every time Aborigines have been round, for worry of selling some type of superstition or different.

It makes me marvel a bit why we appear to be extra tolerant of superstition in underprivileged minorities. I suppose in a approach it’s fairly patronizing to have that angle.

There’s an fascinating research lined in an article titled “Willie Wagtails: The Werewolves of the Chicken World” which at first look may also appear to be catering to some superstition however which actually analyzes potential causes for males of this species generally singing at night time.

In fact, if science just isn’t for you, you can even search for the Non secular That means of Willie Wagtail (“Unlock the superb secrets and techniques of this non secular image”) right here. Simply please don’t return to this web site afterward.

Whereas Australian people primarily react to local weather change by turning up their air conditioners, Australian Ringnecks apparently enhance their wing size (supply):

“The wing size of Ringneck Parrots within the southwest of Western Australia has been growing because the Nineteen Seventies, coinciding with that area changing into hotter and drier … There’s the likelihood that the birds’ wings are an evolutionary response to the warmer situations, and assist the parrots quiet down.”

In fact, as an authorized cat particular person, I used to be delighted to see a Inexperienced Catbird close to Brisbane. After I publicly current chook pictures, I generally play the decision of the chook and ask what they suppose it’s. The reply just isn’t all the time right, however I believe the identify “Inexperienced Strangling-an-Toddler-Baby-Chicken” won’t be that good for the picture of the species (and it could be a bit lengthy, too).

I’m not a lot of a satan worshipper myself, principally as a result of I’m a Sagittarius, and it’s well-known that folks of this star signal don’t imagine within the satan. Sadly, this additionally means I hardly ever get to satisfy this relatively cute little Yellow-throated Scrubwren which in line with M. Morcombe (Birds of Australia) is also called ‘Satan-bird’ as a result of it’s all the time discovered within the darkest components of the rainforest.

In fact, when talking of the satan, it’s laborious for me to not point out the tune “The perfect ever dying metallic band from Denton” by The Mountain Goats.

When it comes to design, the Pied Currawong additionally appears to be impressed by devil, and I imply this in the very best approach.

Usually, this isn’t a chook getting a whole lot of good press.

Ornithologist Colin Harrison describes the pied currawong as having “the marginally furtive however alert air of a chook about to commit against the law.” (supply)

And in a reasonably complete search by Dr Julie O’Connor, she might solely discover one supply mentioning the Pied Currawong in a constructive gentle – and that’s as Roasted Currawong (which apparently tastes effectively along with mushrooms).

I like them loads, although. If I ever have a used automobile I have to promote, I’ll undoubtedly ask for his or her assist.

Dr. O’Connor additionally provides a relatively particular rationale why Pied Currawongs will not be that loved by Australians: “For instance, a pleasant Excellent Fairy-wren appears much more lovable than the pied currawong who snatches the wren from its nest, tears it aside then feeds it to its personal younger.”

However, Excellent Fairy-wrens (just like the magpies talked about earlier) are additionally extraordinarily promiscuous. If I used to be so inclined, I would suppose that they should be killed by Pied Currawongs for his or her sinful habits.

“These birds are infamous for his or her polyamorous method to intercourse, regardless of being socially monogamous. Breeding pairs kind unique social bonds, but every associate will nonetheless mate with different people.” (supply)

One other web site claims that “the male Excellent Fairy-wrens …[have] been dubbed the least devoted birds on the planet owing to their rampant promiscuity. Feminine birds have been noticed being courted by 13 males in a half-hour interval.” 

The females, juveniles, and fewer formidable males favor to remain brown, as the extraordinary blue shade attracts predators.

Nonetheless, the females favor precisely these males that are blue for the longest time. Sort of irresponsible to help any such habits, I believe (supply). That is what killed James Dean.

The Latin species identify of the Leaden Flycatcher is rubecola (“red-breasted”), one of many comparatively few examples of a species named after a attribute solely proven by the feminine (the males shouldn’t have something reddish on them).

As a type of compensation, the English identify “Leaden” refers back to the shade of the male – although in good gentle, the male is superbly blue relatively than boring grey (as instructed by the phrase “leaden).

Funding by female and male mother and father was discovered to be very related in any respect phases of nesting (supply), although the photograph under could counsel in any other case.

The Black-faced Monarch is a relative in the identical chook household, the Monarchidae.

Sulphur-crested Cockatoos have realized to open trash bins within the Sydney space, in search of meals. They could need to search for a greater press illustration although, because the associated NYT article is titled “Trash Parrots Invent New Talent in Australian Suburbs“, which is type of a combined message.

In fact, posing on youtube with dance strikes doesn’t assist the species’ repute both.

Nor does their occasional harmful habits – they harm buildings and as soon as did AUS$50,000 value of injury to the roof of the Nationwide Herbarium of New South Wales (supply).

John Martin, a researcher of the Massive Metropolis Chicken venture, states that “It might simply be they’ve obtained a foul angle,” and provides boredom or playfulness as further causes earlier than declaring just some people are responsible of this habits.

They’re fairly long-lived, with a verified age of 57 and even longer lifespans reported anecdotally (supply).

The Masked Lapwing has its personal small brochure edited by the Australian Transport Security Bureau because it apparently is a threat at airports – the species likes quick grass and defends its territory aggressively, probably even in opposition to massive plane. Between 1991 and 2001, 143 chook strikes involving Masked Lapwings have been reported to the ATSB.

I’m not certain whether or not its aggressive habits or their face (that to me resembles the headgear of historical hoplite troopers) is liable for their Latin species identify miles (soldier).

Lewin’s Honeyeater is called after John Lewin, a British illustrator who after touring to Australia in 1800 authored the primary illustrated ebook to be engraved and printed in Australia. His Wikipedia has a couple of tragicomical bits:

“In some way he missed this voyage [to Australia] however his spouse traveled on it”

“The ensuing books have been meant to fund his passage house [to the UK], however the vogue for Australian pure wonders was already fading by the point he printed [them]”

“Solely six copies of his subsequent ebook … have survived, which means that the remaining copies have been by some means misplaced”.

Good-looking chook although.

It’s actually not true that writing a submit about Australia and never mentioning flying foxes is against the law, however why take the chance?



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