Chasing currawongs

I’ve been chasing Pied Currawongs for a few weeks now, after hearing the distinctive calls of these winter altitudinal migrants in early May.

Finally a couple arrived in the garden at the weekend and I managed some hastily composed images. Then, later in the day a single Grey Currawong turned up. Like its ‘cousin’ this species is wary and somewhat cryptic around town. Grey Currawongs are resident in the box-ironbark country but tend to move around more during winter as they come into gardens in search of food when there are lean pickings in the bush. The two species can be hard to separate – a couple of key features are the bill shape (the Grey Currawong lacks the hooked tip of the Pied Currawong) and the latter has white at the upper base of the tail. Both have white under tail coverts.

Pied Currawong, Newstead, 3rd June 2017

II

Grey Currawong, Newstead, 3rd June 2017

This Grey Currawong was seen the next day along Codrington Street

Being mobbed by Red Wattlebirds

The ‘bill gap’ is often quite obvious in the Grey Currawong

4 responses to “Chasing currawongs

  1. Thanks for the information about the different bill, I wouldn’t have known otherwise!

  2. I wouldn’t encourage them Geoff, seeing you have so many small birds.
    I’ve a lot of friendly pied currawongs who’ll take food from my hand, but no birds smaller than a noisy miner – and I’ve had to rescue noisy chicks a couple times. Currawongs are wonderfully entertaining, but badly behaved even when well fed.

  3. Thanks for that info Eric. I am not on this blog because I know a lot or anything very much about birds. But I love them and love Geoff’s work. I am interested in your comments, Eric, because the currawongs certainly look as if they would chase Geoff back. 🙂 The eyes! The beaks! The demeanour! They look crafty. They look as if they will brook no interference. Or is this me attributing human traits to birds?

  4. We don’t like Currawongs as they can be nasty, for example killing a young Kookaburra. Also, they know when fruit is ripe and they will strip a tree and as a result, we have put all our fruit trees under a netting enclosure to keep them and the Crimson Rosellas out.

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