As I’ve sat for most of week at the computer, a pleasant aural distraction has been listening to a pair of Grey Fantails calling from the garden. At this time of year we get some interesting visitors passing through, like these fantails, perhaps on the move after breeding. In the past week we’ve had Olive-backed Oriole, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Fuscous and Yellow-tufted Honeyeaters, all unusual in the centre of town.
I suspect the Grey Fantails won’t hang around so I’ll enjoy them while I can. I’d forgotten what a beautiful song they have. Hearing them in the bush among other more boisterous, vocally impressive species I’ve frequently overlooked their melodies. Not so when they are the only birds calling on a clear, cool morning.
PS: If you’d like to learn more about the structure and function of rictal bristles click here to see this paper, Lederer, R. J., 1972, The role of avian rictal bristles, Wilson Bull. 84:193–197.