Saturday, November 15, 2008

Flycatchers build on success

Where would you like to build this year, my love? Fancy a change?

Oh, I don't know, darling. That spot last year was nice, with plenty of morning sun. And a bit of shade in the afternoon.

You mean that little paperbark by the track? Just around the bend from the hide?

Yes, that would do nicely. It was fun last year sitting right over the heads of people walking by.

And they didn't notice us, most of them. Right, I'll get to work straight away. We'll wrap this up in just a few days.

Creatures of habit, all of us. None more so than a pair (male above) of Leaden Flycatchers (Myiagra rubecula) seen in Tyto today part-way through construction of their nest on a low horizontal fork.

With some bark exterior to camouflage it the nest won't be quite so obvious in another day or two. It will, however, be in view to all visitors who lift their heads a fraction. Most won't, so the birds will sit quietly on the nest and watch the walkers wander by.

Before their happy paperbark experience raising two youngsters last year, the same pair nested very low on a shaded bough and just above waist-high grasses close to another track nearby. One day, two hatchlings; the next, no hatchlings! Tree snake or tree frog, probably.

The birds wasted no time in moving 30 metres west - and two metres higher - to the paperbark. The new nest is less than a metre away from the old site. Success breeds success - and good habits!


Denis Wilson said...

Hi tony.
Lets hope for another successful outcome. It seems unusual (to me) that they nest so low. In Canberra, they like to nest high in Scribbly Gums, on a small branch, partly protected by another branch over the nest.
Keep us informed of developments, pls.

mick said...

It's nice when you can see birds nesting in the same place each year - or very close to it in this case. Will you be able to see into the nest?

Duncan said...

Another beaut one Tony, your blog's a delight.

Tyto Tony said...

Hi Denis,

Yes, my experience elsewhere of LFCs has been of higher and better disguised and camouflaged nests. I'll maintain a distant watch on the pair.

Tyto Tony said...

Hi Mick,

Nest's just that bit too high. I'm not too keen on a lot of nest-watching. It's fraught with worry about upsetting nature's course. Don't want to be too precious about it because I understand the pleasure many derive from watching developments.

Tyto Tony said...

Gidday Duncan,

Thanks. I return your compliment. Think we might be birds of a feather?

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