Saturday, September 19, 2015

Honeyeater doesn't give a fig for fruit trend

Looks like Macleay's Honeyeater (Xanthotis macleayanus) lost way and ended up in drying wetland habitat, but bird grabbed prey from planting in the Jourama Falls camping area yesterday. Seldom seen so many honeyeaters active in the area. Most were feeding on newly ripened cluster figs. Much interest also shown in boiled red capsicum cast away by departed campers. Doesn't take lot of imagination to see links between extreme dryness generally being experienced this year and a strong preference among birds for moist feed.

With preferred feeding growth not doing so well, Mistletoebird (Dicaeum hirundinaceum) takes to bottlebrush flowers  hanging over parking spots at Tyto Wetlands entry. Air has been full of their sharp high calls lately. Conditions would seem against much breeding as materials for their soft woven 'baby bootee' nests have dried up.

Dry? I'll say, says Brown Honeyeater (Lichmera indistincta). More than bone dry. This is shell dry with freshwater mussel sitting beside disappearing front lagoon in Tyto. Water rats and Nankeen Herons leave the shells along the lagoon banks, neatly gathered (rats) or scattered (herons).

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