12 August, 2008

Birds In and Around the Village in August

Buff-banded Rails are a common sight along quiet back roads of the Atherton Tablelands. This photo shows a bird ready for breeding but most are not this colourful yet.
White-headed Pigeons are fruit eaters. While they will take it fresh from the tree they are also happy to eat from the ground. After Cyclone Larry in March 2006 many of our birds left the district because of the lack of fruit. Numbers are now returning to normal and it is not unusual to see them feeding on the footpaths and road verges in Yungaburra or Malanda. Their nests are typical of their tribe being so thin one can see the egg through the bottom of the nest. However they are better than most pigeons at hiding their nest in dense vegetation. They lay a single large white egg.
Black Ducks live on most of the waterways here. this one was photographed under the new swinging bridge across Petersen Creek in Yungaburra.
Barred Cuckoo-shrikes eat mostly fruit. This one was in a fig tree in Short Street. Also in the same tree was this male Figbird with its face already coloured up for breeding. The face skin becomes dull out of the breeding season but then turns this lovely crimson as they get sexy. The females face is grey for most of the year but when she is getting ready for breeding it goes a beautiful mauve.

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