Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Banding birds

I was helping John Rawsthorne catch and band birds last weekend at the Weddin Mountains. It was the end of the breeding season and many of the birds we caught were young of the year. Or like the rainbow bee-eater above were adults worn out after their efforts - literally as this bird shows with its tatty plumage and broken tail-streamers.

This red-browed firetail was identifiable as a bird of the year because the red in its brow was incomplete
- the adult birds have a thick brush stroke across their brow.

There was a family party of grey butcherbirds in the area, this is one of the adults.
They have a particularly sharp hook on the tip of their bill for picking up prey, mostly invertebrates, but also small skinks and young birds if they can catch them. That is my skin on the tip.

                               Another predator made an appearance - a goanna ( lace monitor lizard). 


It was nice and quiet as it walked through the camp, still a youngster itself.