Interesting times

In the bush it seems like the main breeding season is drawing to a close, with many bush birds currently feeding young. Out on the plains though there is still plenty of activity, with raptors getting busy raising youngsters, or in the case of this Spotted Harrier, just getting started.

The harrier looks like it’s back at a favourite site – a small Yellow Box/Grey Box remnant in the middle of the cropping landscape. This is a perfect spot to raise a family with the prospect of a plentiful food supply before, during and after harvest.

SH1

Adult Spotted Harrier, Moolort Plains, 25th October 2014.

SH3

Spotted Harrier nest in Yellow Box.

SH2

The photographer gets a sideways glance!

Kestrel

Female Nankeen Kestrel overlooking the nest hollow – the weak sounds from inside the hollow suggests the eggs are no more.

2 responses to “Interesting times

  1. Geoff Am enjoying your posts very much, great photos. Perhaps you could get a colleague photograph you in your hide and post it? It is interesting to contrast your bird obs with ours in Canberra. For example the Red Wattle Birds seem to have outsmarted the Currawongs this year by breeding early, their first brood now fledged whilst the Currawong pair across the road have hatchlings in their nest now and not a Koel in sight yet.

    A pair of Wedge-tailed Eagles has built a nest within 5km of Parliament House but I suspect they never meant it as a breeding nest, but as a secondary feeding platform 10km from their normal nests (three close together – perhaps their parents). There was at least one Echidna in the nest which beggars the imagination. Do you know if this happens i.e. eagles using more than one nest and not always for breeding?

    Best wishes Kevin McCue NPA ACT

    • Hi Kevin

      I never actually use a hide for my photography – just aim to get close enough for short visits to shoot what I need. Good to hear of those interesting local observations. We only get Pied Currawongs around Newstead during winter but the RWBs certainly bred early this year – the first nests were started in late July. Re WTEs – in my experience our local birds often have a number of nests in the general vicinity of the active nests, although I’ve never seen them used as feeding platforms. They rotate around the various nests from year to year and other raptors (eg Peregrine Falcons, Brown Falcons) will sometimes use the vacant nests.

      All the best, geoff

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