Tag Archives: Superb Fairy Wren

A Mistletoebird intrudes

Walking along one of the tracks around the Moorooduc Quarry I heard the distinctive call of the Mistletoebird along with the alarm call of a Superb-fairy wren. Usually the fairy-wrens stay low, nearer the ground, but a female wren was calling quite loudly as a Mistletoebird helped itself to the fruit of a Cherry Ballart tree. The Mistletoebird as its name suggests has a strong relationship with various native mistletoes (Box, Drooping and Creeping) and helps spread the seed onto other trees via a very fast and sticky digestive process. I hadn’t seen one feeding in a Cherry Ballart before. The ballart is another form of parasitic plant that uses the roots of other trees to gain its nutrients rather than the branches.

Mistletoebird, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Mistletoebird, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Mistletoebird, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

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Mistletoebird and Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Mistletoebird has a snack while a Superb Fairy-wren frowns at the intrusion.

Small birds of Moorooduc

I often stop by Moorooduc Quarry to observe the Peregrine Falcons on the cliffs of the quarry. Afterwards I walk the nearby tracks and photograph the smaller forest birds.

Eastern Yellow Robin, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Eastern Yellow Robin, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Female Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

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Churchill National Park Fairywrens.

A friend took me to Churchill National Park a while back. I have been looking for new sites around the greater Melbourne with good photo opportunities. It was a the first time I had visited this site and it was pretty good. There are plenty of tracks and I found good range of forest bird species and a colony of Superb Fairywrens including this nicely coloured male below.

Male Superb Fairy-wren, Chrurchill National Park, Vic

Male Superb Fairywren, Churchill National Park, Vic

Flying visit along the coast

Over spring I have been working on a garden down the Mornington Peninsula, trying to rediscover and restore the original veggie and garden beds. On the way home I popped into a few new spots along the way –  Highfield in the National Park and the McClelland Sculpture Park in Langwarrin. The Superb Fairy-wren was displaying its near eclipse plumage (last of its breeding/summer plumage). As I parked my car at the Sculpture Garden, I heard a weird bird call that I did not recognise (of course I assumed I had discovered a new species or at least a lifer) and it turned out to be a begging young Butcherbird. I watched as a parent returned a few times with little morsels for the hungry beggar. Notice the deadly little bill hook that the Butcherbird will use as part of its bird hunting weaponry.

Superb Fairy-wren, Green's Bush (southern), Vict

Superb Fairy-wren, Mornington Peninsula National Park: Highfield, Vic

Juvenile Grey Butcherbird, McClelland Sculpture Park, Langwarrin, Vic

Juvenile Grey Butcherbird, McClelland Sculpture Park, Langwarrin, Vic

Superb Fairy-wren

A tiny Superb Fairy-wren at the Garden of St Erth in Blackwood, Victoria. I watched a small family group hunting along a path. I could not get in front of them to get the right light, but it made for an interesting silhouette.

Superb Fairy-wren, Garden of St Erth, Blackwood, Vic

Superb Fairy-wren, Garden of St Erth, Blackwood, Vic

The Boss is back….

On a section of the Great South West Walk in the Lower Glenelg National Park, I stopped for a photography break and was soon joined by a pair of Superb Fairy Wrens, a male in beautiful blue breeding plumage and an adult female. The female is dominant in the pairing and may have a group of suitors in the area. The Fairy Wren certainly made sure the male knew she was in charge. Each time he jumped to the top of a stump she chased him off…it seemed to be a bit of a game between them…

Male Superb Fairy Wren, Great South West Walk, Lower Glenelg National Park, Victoria

Male Superb Fairy Wren, Great South West Walk, Lower Glenelg National Park, Victoria

Female Superb Fairy Wren, Great South West Walk, Lower Glenelg National Park, Victoria

 The female Superb Fairy Wren keeping an eye on the local players…

Male Superb Fairy Wren, Great South West Walk, Lower Glenelg National Park, Victoria

Male Superb Fairy Wren keeping a lookout and claiming the stump..

Male Superb Fairy Wren, Great South West Walk, Lower Glenelg National Park, Victoria

A quick hop off the stump

Female Superb Fairy Wren, Great South West Walk, Lower Glenelg National Park, Victoria

The boss is back…

A tiny family

On a visit to a local wetlands, Karkarook Park, in Heatherton, I came across a tiny Superb Fairy Wren chick that practically ran across my foot as I was walking along one of the paths. It stayed right in the centre of the path and ignored me. I stepped back to watch this little family encounter. There were two chicks being fed by two females while several males watched from nearby branches.

Superb Fairy Wren, Karkarook Park, Heatherton

Superb Fairy Wren that landed on the path at my feet

Superb Fairy Wren, Karkarook Park, Heatherton

Mum or an aunt, quickly popped over and with some food encouraged the chick off the path.

Superb Fairy Wren, Karkarook Park, Heatherton

Feeding the chick.

Superb Fairy Wren, Karkarook Park, Heatherton

A Male Superb Fairy Wren watching on.