Monday, August 30, 2010

Fishing for Great Egret, and facts

Eastern Great Egret (Ardea modesta) in mid-swallow today at Tyto after bird caught me napping. Stood around for some time and didn't look poised to strike. I looked away for a moment and missed the catch.

Series provides an excuse to toss in a moodier morning image from a few days back.

And here's a female Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus) taking off today from grassland near info centre. Almost certainly one of pair of storks in wetlands the other day with one immature. Pair raised three young three years ago.

By no coincidence, the reduction is in keeping with my general sightings. Bird numbers, and species, mostly lower than previous five years in Tyto. Insectivores notably down. Why? My guess (stress on guess): Jan-Feb 2009 floods, shire spraying and  2010's dismal extended wet (still going) have thinned out or removed much vigorous under- and over-growth. Fewer insects. Fewer birds. August species count usually 115-118: this month 109.
Click pix to enlarge   


mick said...

Great photos of Great Egret with catch. Most would be perfectly happy with those but you want the catch as well! Perfectionist!!

Tyto Tony said...

Sort of guilty. But...should have been more alert!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful clarity ....and action!

You are not alone in the wet weather - what ever happened to fresh, cool mornings with the mist moving down the Daintree river? We had 104mm in the 24hrs to 7am today. Perhaps some sunny weather in Sept and Oct to look forward to?

Tyto Tony said...

I hope! But La Nina's got us and the SOI shows plenty more moisture likely.

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