Tag Archives: Bassian Thrush

Oops a bit too close…

I was watching a Bassian Thrush move along the path collecting worms for a return to the nest. It would occasionally drop all the worms, pick up an irresistible insect of some sort for a snack and then one by one pick up all the worms and move down the track. It had 6 bigs worms in its beak and after a few minutes ducked down a side wallaby track. I stood still and tried to see where it would go so I could find the nest. A meter or so from my face an Eastern yellow robin flew to a branch and hopped into a nest. I had no idea it was there but after standing still for so long it seemed to not see me as a threat. I slowly moved back to the other side of the track and took a few pics. After several minutes she flew off and I took few pics of the nest. Robins have amazing nests made with soft bark strips and then covered with spider web and live moss and lichen.

Eastern Yellow Robin nest, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Eastern Yellow Robin nest, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Eastern Yellow Robin, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Eastern Yellow Robin, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Building a picture of territories

I have found several spots now at Greens Bush where I am sure that Bassians have set up feeding and nesting territories. Besides looking for the right sort of terrain and vegetation I am also on the lookout for fresh droppings. When watching the birds feed and pick up some good size morsels they seem to process the previously taken food and excrete a bright white splash. Based on the  amount of white droppings I am finding in an area I can be fairly certain that I have found another Bassian feeding area. The shots of the two birds below were taken in different parts of the forest walk that I have come to expect to see Bassians.

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

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Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

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Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

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Bassian Thrush winter project?

After the wild weather of last Saturday it was nice to get out into the Greens Bush forest again on Sunday and see what was happening. It was still early, a bit cold and many of the usual species I see there had decided to sleep in. One of the highlights beside some nice morning sun was finding several Bassian Thrush feeding on parts of the circuit track. Being quite dark under the trees I tried using the flash with some limited success but had better luck when I slowly followed the Thrush up the track a few steps at a time staying low until it finally moved into a mottled sun patch. This species is generally quite shy and due to its skulking nature has not been studied well. I see a few Thrushes most times I visit Greens Bush so I know it is a good spot for them. I can feel a project coming on.

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

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Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

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Yet to learn fear

There are quite a few juveniles birds along the Greens Bush Baldry circuit. It has been a fairly good breeding season and I am seeing many young birds from a few locally common species….Grey Fantails, Red-browed Finches, Brown Thornbills, White-browed Scrubwrens and Bassian Thrush. The one pictured below was feeding on the track where I often find them. Being a young bird it has yet to learn what to fear and flew up to a nearby branch and tried to figure out what I was up to.

Juvenile Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

Juvenile Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Vic

A not so bashful Bassian Thrush

Over the winter and into spring I have been exploring new sites down the Mornington Peninsula, particularly around the National Park. I found an entrance to a Bushland Reserve not far from where I stay and it turned out to be the Southern section of Green’s Bush – a brand new part that I had never been to before. I spent a few hours walking a new circuit and found plenty of new views, tracks, trees and signs of more mammals than the northern section. I had planned just a quick 1 hour walk but it became 3 when I missed a turn off and ended up much further south than intended and had to backtrack. I will definitely being going back to explore further and see what the changing seasons will bring to this part of the park. I have also started to review more detailed maps of area to see what else is hidden. The Bassian Thrush below was quite curious when I flushed it off the path. Usually they fly off low and quickly into the bush, but I think this one was young and had not learnt to be afraid yet.

Bassian Thrush, Green's Bush, Vict

Bassian Thrush, Green’s Bush (south section), Mornington Peninsula Nat Park, Vic

Bassian Thrush, Green's Bush, Vict

Bassian Thrush II

Small birds of the far eastern forests.

Mallacoota is surrounded by the Croajingolong National Park wilderness. The dry forests and pockets of rainforest have many species of small birds. It is often a challenge to find them in the heat and humidity of summer but walking quietly in the morning can be rewarding. I am often surprised by their vibrant colours but when facing in a certain direction they can be invisible and difficult to see.

Eastern yellow Robin, Shipwreck Creek, Mallacoota, Vic, 18 Dec 2016

Eastern yellow Robin, Shipwreck Creek

Female Leaden Flycatcher, Shipwreck Creek, Mallacoota, Vic, 18 Dec 2016

Female Leaden Flycatcher, Double Creek

Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Shipwreck Creek, Mallacoota, Vic, 18 Dec 2016

Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Shipwreck Creek trail

Golden Whistler, Shipwreck Creek, Mallacoota, Vic, 18 Dec 2016

Golden Whistler, Mallacoota

Scarlet Honeyeater, Bastian Point, Mallacoota, Vic, 18 Dec 2016

Scarlet Honeyeater, Mallacoota

Lewins Honeyeater, Mallacoota, Vic, 21 Dec 2016

Lewins Honeyeater, Mallacoota

Silvereyes, Mallacoota, Vic, 19 Dec 2016

Silvereyes, Mallacoota

Basian Thrush, Mallacoota, Vic, 19 Dec 2016

Basian Thrush, Mallacoota

Hidden Bassian Thrush

I have visited Greens Bush a few times recently. It is part of the Mornington Peninsula National Park. It is a good spot to visit between seasons as many bird species tend to migrate along the ridge lines heading North or South and I have a good chance of finding something interesting.  On this occasion I was looking out for Owls and Nightjars. I think it would be a superb spot for Powerful Owls as the vegetation is right (deep shaded cool gullies) and there seems to be plenty of preferred prey (possums and I am sure some  sugar-gliders). I saw many signs of Ring Tailed Possums including quite a few Dreys and even a tree that was packed with a colony with one hanging out…While walking along the track I flushed a Bassian Thrush. The Bassian has a similar habit as the Blackbird (but it a native and much more handsome). The Thrush skulks along paths and shoots off into the low scrub when scared. The one below kept just ahead of me and then flew to a low branch to watch me. I think it was a young bird as usually they are quite wary and fast to disappear.

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Victoria

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Victoria

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Victoria

Bassian Thrush – very well camouflaged on a bush track, hard to see until they flush

Bassian Thrush, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Victoria

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Ring Tailed Possum, Greens Bush, Mornington Peninsula National Park, Victoria

Ring Tailed Possum colony in a tree…