A home amongst the blackberry and thistle

It’s a sad thing to report, but some native birds are not that fussy when it comes to choosing between weeds and indigenous plants for nest sites. They clearly take a utilitarian approach, as was the case with this Eastern Yellow Robin, currently nesting at the Reserve on the Loddon River.

YRnest

Eastern Yellow Robin nest – woven amongst Blackberry and thistles, Loddon River @ Newstead, 25th August 2013.

YReggs

The eggs of the Eastern Yellow Robin.

YR-on-nest

The adult was quickly back onto the nest after my incursion.

4 responses to “A home amongst the blackberry and thistle

  1. David Griffiths

    Geoff are you familiar with the concept of novel ecosystems,the big challenge of our time is landscape function not our perception of good or bad plants,birds do not make the same value judgements on habitat as many of your posts confirm.

    • Hi David.
      Yes, very familiar with the concept of novel ecosystems and appreciate the value they paly in an altered and dynamic landscape. The area where I spotted the Yellow Robin’s nest is certainly a good example of such an ecosystem – at the moment it consists of a native tree layer (E.camaldulensis), many of which would have been there in the 1800s, the shrubs are a mix of Hawthorn, Prunus, Blackberry and Gorse with a ground layer of Oxalis. It’s a good area for birds but the lack of native understorey seems to inhibit species such as Whiteface, Scarlet Robin and various thornbills which can be found in nearby woodland.
      Cheers, geoff

  2. Superb Fair-wrens seem to like blackberry patches too, and sometimes seem to move out when the blackberry plants are killed.

    • Yes, they certainly enjoy the Blackberry around here too! I like the idea of replacing Blackberry with native shrubs such as Tree Violet, over time.
      Cheers, geoff

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