Friday, February 27, 2015

Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos deft captains of kernels

Food ... the daily grind. Not always noted for tidy table manners, Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos (Calyptorhynchus banksii) male (top) and female show dainty touch as they pry kernels from tough fruit stones (possibly palms).    

Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus) jumps into tasty mango.

Red-backed Fairy-wren (Malurus melanocephalus) picks at possibly insect treats. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Green Tree Frog fancies fence-pipe home

Plenty of green around, but not a tree in sight of this Green Tree Frog atop fence pipe home today.

Warm, secure, dry up high, cool and moist down at ground level,  solid des res for Litoria caerulea.

Of course even handsome frogs need a tiny tweak to make them shine.  

Friday, February 20, 2015

Yellow Wagtail sightings pose questions

Eastern Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla tschutschensis) sightings uncommonly high at Mungalla Station as Ingham experiences its dryest wet season for more than 10 years.

Cannot tell if the birds have all been around since November, or if some have perhaps been south and are returning north, or are latecomers to Australia after quitting the Northern Hemisphere late in the Russian or Japanese winter.

One thing unchanged is the difficulty of sneaking close to the wary, flighty feeders.

But almost got close enough today for 'that' picture. And at least got a good look at highly coloured bird. So long as the dry continues there'll be more chances for closer efforts. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Bushlark emerges from sea of grass

Hard to find Horsfield's Bushlark (Mirafra javanica) and other grass inhabitants unless they take to the barbed wire above the lush growth these days of a so-far floodless wet season around Ingham.

Most years these Orient Station cattle would here be knee-deep in water in mid-February, not surrounded as today by seas of tall grass.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Wood Sandpiper leads the stand-alones

Birds of a feather may well flock together, but some species seem happy to stand alone much of the time. Almost always solo when around Ingham, Wood Sandpiper (Tringa glareola) also often turns up in temporary pools (roadside, above) ignored by others. 

Pied Heron (Egretta picata) less often totally alone, but seldom up this way accompanied by others of its species, though I did see 16 standing on dirt ridge in flooded Orient Station paddock recently. Never before seen such a large group.

Not so notable a loner, indeed sometimes here in hundreds, none the less Eurasian Coot (Fulica atra) will happily stick around by itself for weeks without any evidence of pining for company.