The Rise and Shine Bushland Reserve is one of the places in central Victoria where you can reliably find the White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike, a less common relative of the more common and widespread Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike.
I see it, or at least hear it, on almost all visits to the reserve but have observed others birdwatchers get quite excited when they first spot this beautiful cuckoo-shrike. Central Victoria is a bit of a hot-spot.
The individual photographed below was sighted last weekend at the reserve – hunting insects in the eucalyptus canopy to the north of the shelter. I watched as it left its perch and snatch a bush cricket from a branch. The bird then proceeded to bash the stunned insect against the wood and gradually dismember it. Bush crickets or katydids are common throughout the box ironbark country and rely on their camouflage to evade predators. In this case Katy didn’t!