Hungry, Shy and Alluring – the Ladies of Tarra Valley

During my recent trip to the Tarra Bulga National Park and the Tarra Valley, the weather was overcast and drizzly making the forests quite dark and difficult to photograph birds.

After a few days the sun did come out and I found a few interesting scenes of feeding, preening and secret bathing spots.

Immature Grey Shrike Thrush

Immature Grey Shrike Thrush waiting for a parent to bring a snack

Adult Grey Shrike Thrush

Adult Grey Shrike Thrush with a moth

Grey Shrike Thrushe

Grey Shrike Thrush feeding time

Silvereye

Silvereye

Silvereye

Silvereye preening

Silvereye

Silvereye keeping an eye on the voyeur with the camera

Eastern Spinebill

Eastern Spinebill – there were many large Fuschias around the campground and along the river (escaped plants) most likely established by previous owners of the campgrounds. The Spinebill loves this bush for the nectar in the flowers.

I had walked downstream from the campgrounds one evening and was looking at a small pond waiting for a platypus to appear when I remembered the old birding adage “always look behind you“. I did glance back up the creek and saw a large brown bird hopping into a rock pool and splashing about. It was a Lyrebird taking its evening dip.

Lyrebird

Lyrebird

Lyrebird

Lyrebird II

Lyrebird

Lyrebird bathing – small wings and a long tail make for very short flight – more of a ground dweller and branch jumper.

A dog barked nearby and the bird jumped back into the bushes so I took the opportunity to re-position and observe a bit longer. The Lyrebird made a few calls and came down a few minutes later and hopped right back in…

Lyrebird

Lyrebird – big claws for digging the rainforest floor for meals of insects, spiders and earthworms.

Lyrebird

Just right……

Lyrebird

Lyrebird splashdown  – photos following this one were a blur of feathers and water…quite funny to watch – she spent a fair bit of time working on the tail as well.

Lyrebird bath

Secret Lyrebird bath – after she left I had a look at the bath and it is a natural bathing spot – perfect for future stake-outs.

Lyrebird in Nest

My Blue Thunder co-owner and I found a different Lyrebird building a nest in the National Park – the nest was about 2 metres off the ground on the side of a large Mountain Ash tree. She placed sticks carefully and collected large mouthfuls of mouldy leaf litter to place on the bottom of the nest. She ignored us watching and taking photos from only a few metres away.

Lyrebird Nes

Lyrebird Nest on the side of the Ash. Invisible unless you saw her jump up into it.

Tarra River

Tarra River next to the campgrounds

Moss and Lichen

Moss and Lichen with a nice coloured bokeh background.

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