Lovely to catch up with blue fairies
Terrible picture, but it's exciting to have again found some Lovely Fairy-wrens (Malurus amabilis). Ducked into a mess of pandanus and guavas yesterday in pursuit of a Rufous Fantail and found male wren almost under my feet.
The find comes after losing track of a wren pair last year. Fleeting glimpses of other wrens seemingly without much blue initially led me to think perhaps the male was a Variegated (which would be a Tyto first).
That thought evaporated today with this female, carrying nesting material. Even with such a clue, it took me more than an hour to locate the half-built nest, barely 30cm off the dirt in a shadowy grove well away from any regular tracks. I don't like haunting nest areas, particularly so in this case, given the rarity of the species in Tyto, but I'll hope for better pictures and better outcome for the birds (the last nest found held two eggs one day, one the next, and was then deserted).
Much easier to find Red-backed Fairy-wrens (Malurus melanocephalus). Here's one looking straight into the lens at the hide today. And below a better image from the back file.