Braeside Birding

On the weekend I went for a walk around Braeside Park. I wanted to see if I could find any of the resident Tawny Frogmouths. I know quite a few of their regular roosting trees but with the breeding season well underway it can be a bit more difficult to find them. I only found one Tawny and it happened to be a large one sitting on a well made nest. The nests I have previously seen have been quite flimsy but this one looked more robust. Along with the Rainbow Lorikeets, and the nesting Tawny Frogmouth, I found a White-faced Heron, a wind-blown Black Shouldered Kite and a Wood Duck that seemed confused by my antics – I was standing on the walking path with my binoculars looking up into the trees looking for Tawny’s. I heard a squawk and just above me was the duck. It must have had a nest in the tree hollow or  it would not have stayed on the branch so close to me…

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Tawny Frogmouth, Braeside Park, Victoria

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White-faced Heron

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Black-shouldered Kite

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Australian Wood duck

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trying to figure out what I was doing…

 

Curious Rainbows

While visiting Braeside Park on the weekend I was photographing a nesting Tawny Frogmouth, and two Rainbow Lorrikeets decided to investigate.

Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

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Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

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Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

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Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

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Rainbow Lorikeet Braeside Park, Braeside, Victoria

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Hare of the T-section

I don’t often see Hares in the wild. I have seen two now at Werribee  and both were a surprise…once when it came down a dirt track towards the car I thought it was a fox, then a small dog but then it raised its ears and I saw it was a hare.

The hare below was just sitting and enjoying a bit of sun on a cold winters day. When the birds alert went up that a raptor was cruising by it seemed to recognise the call and became much more aware and started to look up and around.

I had to check Wiki to learn more about it: Long-eared, and long limbed, Hares are fast runners, typically living solitarily or in pairs. Hare species are native to Africa, Eurasia, North America, and the Japanese archipelago. Hares do not bear their young below ground in a burrow as do rabbits, but rather in a shallow depression or flattened nest of grass called a form. Young hares are adapted to the lack of physical protection, compared to a burrow, by being born fully furred and with eyes open. They are able to fend for themselves soon after birth where rabbits are born blind and hairless.

Hares are swift animals: The introduced hare found in Australia (Lepus europaeus) can run up to 56 km/h and can leap up to 3 m (10 ft) at a time.

During a spring frenzy, hares can be seen chasing one another and “boxing”, one hare striking another with its paws (probably the origin of the term “mad as a March hare”). For a long time, this had been thought to be male competition, but closer observation has revealed it is usually a female hitting a male to prevent copulation.

Hare, Western Treatment Plant, T-section, Werribee

Hare, Western Treatment Plant, T-section, Werribee

Hare, Western Treatment Plant, T-section, Werribee

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Hare, Western Treatment Plant, T-section, Werribee

well suited for a life above ground, fast, wary and camouflaged

Calls of the forest

Walking through an Eastern Australian eucalyptus forest, one of the loudest natural sounds a visitor could hear would be the White-throated Treecreeper. While a Sulphur-crested Cockatoo could be louder when heard close-up, (and they are very loud), shear decibels for size would have to go to the treecreeper. I found this one in its usual position – climbing vertically up the side of a tree, and occasionally stopping and calling. The small orange marking indicates that it is a female.

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White-throated Treecreeper – Point Addis Ironbark Basin walk, Anglesea, Victoria

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Moving around the tree and working her way up the trunk looking for insects, ants and grubs. 

Point Addis Scrubwren

While photographing the Rufous Bristlebird at Point Addis recently, a White Browed Scrubwren decided it was safe enough to feed alongside the Bristlebird. It foraged amongst the leaf litter hunting for small invertebrates. These small birds usually are very timid and are more often heard scolding trespassers than actually being seen. The adult birds have very distinctive brows that always seem to make them look angry…

White browed Scrubwren, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria,

White browed Scrubwren, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road.

White browed Scrubwren, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria,

Turning over leaf litter and small pieces of bark to find invertebrates…

The Rufous Bristlebird of Point Addis

There are two species of Bristlebirds found in Victoria – the Rufous and the Eastern. The Rufous can be seen along the Great Ocean Road from Anglesea to the border, while the Eastern Bristlebird is found in only a few areas of far eastern Victoria. I have attempted to photograph these species 6 times in the last few years and while I was successful the first time I tried for the Eastern I have not had much success with the Rufous. I have glimpsed it a few times at various locations but I have not got a good look at it or managed to even get close to taking a decent image. It is a shy, ground feeding bird that hides for much of the day. The photographs below were taken on my last trip to Point Addis. I finally worked out where they can be easily photographed and scored a few nice images.

Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

A furtive bird with some interesting colours and feather patterns

Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

The Bristlebird hunted along the ground and allowed us to get quite close – as long as we stayed low as well. 

Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

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Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

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Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

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Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

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Rufous Bristlebird, Point Addis, Great Ocean Road, Anglesea, Victoria

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Elwood’s colourful streets

I noticed that lately there has been an increase in local street art in the walkways and lanes of my home patch in Elwood. I am quit enjoying the developing art scene. Plenty of brick walls available along our many alleys and laneways…

Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

Elwood street art, Elwood, Victoria

Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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Elwood street Art, Elwood, Victoria

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