We have finally arrived at our first day of transitioning out of lock-down here in Sydney, where many have already been out since midnight shopping and celebrating after our 106 days of confinement and restrictions, though many still apply, as we are not yet permitted to leave the Sydney region for our planned holiday. Meanwhile the birds have been unaffected and have been continuing to do what they do this time of year: breed, nest and multiply.
Walking through our local parks much noise and many alarm calls can be heard coming from the many nesting trees, some shared by up to a dozen bird pairs nesting in holes therein. The most noticeable being the Rainbow Lorikeet and the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, which compete for the same nesting holes each year. While we taking our permitted health walk last week we saw the beginnings of this process right before our eyes:
Follow the following slideshow to get the whole story in the mating process.
Many nesting pairs means much concern and stress between pairs, in particular, the Rainbow Lorikeets which are known to be one of the most aggressive and wounding birds to those birds which threaten them or their young. Below is an interesting observation of how a Lorikeet pair defend and deter other Lorikeets and predatory birds, in this case the Australian Raven. Together the pair use their beautiful colouring and synchronized acting abilities to scare off any contenders. This behaviour continued for some time till the threat abated. It was seen in several different trees with several different pairs, making the bush alive with alarm calls.
Other birds including Currawongs, Miners and Butcherbirds were also nesting but more covertly. However, we were greatly surprised to find this Long-billed Corella, which is seldom seen in this park and even in our local area, now nesting along with the other other Cockies.
Another finding was the final product of this nesting process, as one Lorikeet family had already hatched their young fledglings. The two juveniles are identified by their darkly coloured beaks and eyes.
The classical picture is usually the male standing watch above the nest and the female occasionally standing at the entrance when a threat is near. The male (as seen in video below) will often make aggressive tones and body signs as the threat is realized. This also applies to the Cockies:
Enjoy your week, and time out birding, and also those still in lock-down and restricted as it is still early days, and no one knows what the full impact of allowing freedoms while the virus is still rampant here, despite vaccination numbers being high, especially for us older ones.
Don’t forget to purchase that special Christmas or Birthday present here online. A gift that will continue to give and help the reader to a healthy and happier life, with the added bonus of teaching them about our beautiful and interesting birds. The Lock-Down Sale is now finished but the Returning Customer Special continues.
Click here to make your purchase of the Beautiful Bird Books or find out more about these unique books.
When I emerged from my car to begin my walk in the park I confronted this male Australian King Parrot feeding quite peacefully by the road only a couple of feet from me. It permitted me and another couple to photograph and watch it.
I was surprised when the young couple asked me what the name of the bird was, as it was a common bird known to most. It appeared that this couple had not walked previously much in this park, and that the pandemic had caused many to retreat to this spot for their daily permitted health walks of 1 hour. We had noticed the increased numbers of walkers, joggers and riders, people who would normally never come here. This sighting awakened their interest as they realized how little they knew about there surroundings, and how special this little sighting was as a memento of their, what could have been, mundane exercise walk. Most never get to view this bird this close.
This caused me to consider some of the benefits of our long lock-down, and one that came to mind here was how much the little things we often took for granted or even obliviously did not previously notice because of our busy distracted lives, become important and wonderful memories enjoyed together, as couples or families. It was lovely seeing whole families out enjoying nature together for the first time, and their delight when I showed them and explained to them some the birds and creatures in the bush they would have not seen otherwise.
This Charlie Brown cartoon caught my eye on Facebook today, I thought it illustrated perfectly what I am sharing here.
One of the benefits being restricted from doing the big things in life, such as working, shopping, holidays and visiting family and friends, is starting to appreciate the things around us that we often miss or fail to appreciate. For me it is my wife’s smile and the times we sit together in the courtyard and watch the birds enjoying the birdbaths and feeding from our tree, as we chat over lunch or coffee. The walks and special sightings God gives us to enjoy together with him. The changes we make to the house, garden and yard.
When we look back these little things become the big things we share that we enjoyed, peaceful, relaxed quiet times together, with no rushing or having to be anywhere at anytime, afforded to us by the lock-down restrictions. An attitude of gratitude enjoying a grateful, thankful and appreciative heart is not only good for our spirit but also for our emotional, social and physical health. It strengthens our immune system and brings longevity when practiced over a period of time. It also makes us smile and laugh more, endearing us to others in our relationships.
Additional benefits come to those who have made it their habit to give thanks and appreciation to God their Creator, it has been shown that these people live happier healthy lives and are less prone to depression and anger related confrontations. It is simply healthy to be happy.
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. ” – 1 Chronicles 16:34 (NLT)
“Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:18
“And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.” – Colossians 3:15
“Yes, joyful are those who live like this! Joyful indeed are those whose God is the Lord.” – Psalm 144:15