Saturday, October 1, 2011

He has lift off!

His feet aren't on the ledge, and yet neither are his wings flapping. I seem to have caught him suspended in mid-air. Suspect it means that they jump BEFORE they fly away.

This is a Grey Butcher-bird. There was one a little while later whose beauty of song from high in the gums stopped me in my tracks. I thought somehow that they were related to Mapgpies, but cannot find that reference in my bird-book. Apparently, this bird impales its prey for later. An avian version of a pantry.

He kept an eye on me, but was not scared of me. He knew he could easily outsmart me if needs be. But he really wanted that bug. Then he was off, which is when I got the top photograph.


Dianne said...

He's up! up! and away - beautiful!

freefalling said...

I used to be scared of Butcher birds when I was a kid - I think it was the name, plus someone told me they kill pet budgies IN THEIR CAGES! Wha???

But it wasn't til recently when I was visiting Mum and Dad and their collection of backyard birds that I realized how beautiful their song was.

Did I tell you about the book I found at the op shop called Australian Bird Songs that has a record (a vinyl type one) with it, from the 1950's?
It's really interesting - I should do a post on it.

It has the grey bb and the pied bb recorded.
cracticus - cool name.
Isn't that a song - The Court of King Cracticus? Ceraticus??
Danny Kaye?

I was just looking in that book and it says "canaries are often stolen from cages by this species"!!!!

Julie said...

Yeah, but that book is going back a L O N G way ... it would not surprise me that BBs are 'aggresssive' like this though. I am going to hunt out for a www version of its song. The one yesterday bounced from high out of the tree to the point that I was confused re the direction.

Yeah, do a post on that book. I would like to see what it looks like. You find wonderful things at op shops. I will go up to my Vinnies today, as it is raining and the entire bloody city is at the footy.

Ann said...

Well done!

Joan Elizabeth said...

I have been bird hunting this weekend, got nothing as good as this. Haven't seen the butcher birds out at Whistlers Rest lately but this morning saw fantails, wrens, wattle birds, thornbills, king parrots plus the usual run of black and white birds and ducks. Heard lots of lovely calls too, in fact is was an unusual call that got me out of bed .. camped out at the Rest for the first time ever last night.

I am keen to learn to identify birds by their calls.

brattcat said...

what a moment caught!

Kay L. Davies said...

Surreal, isn't it? A bird in the air without its wings spread.
What a great photo, Julie. I love it.
I've heard about these birds, and they do look rather like the magpie I featured this weekend with a mouse in its beak, but this guy is definitely smaller, and the magpie has a slash of bright blue on it.
Birding at Botany Cemetery, whodathunkit?
— K

Julie said...

Ah, Kay, our Maggies have no blue at all. I only learnt that about the North American Magpie recently.