Taking advantage of the weeks of sunny winter weather, and the close to La Nina, my wife and I set out on yet another birding date, this time along the river walk on Botany Bay, not far from where we sighted the Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo, showcased in a previous post. It was not long into our walk when we heard the sounds of another member of the Cockatoo family, the Little Corella, which are found in large flocks, in fact some of the largest ever sighted in Australia. Bass and Flinders while sailing through Bass Strait recorded a migrating flock which took hours to pass over.

Little Corella flock calling

These noisy birds, which can always be heard calling to one another, live and breed in the flock. These once inland birds have started migrating to the coast to eat the pine cones of introduced trees, which is causing some concern to urban areas. Little Corella are extremely playful, noisy and affectionate, pairing for life. They often find their mates during their play. We often hear the flock relocating late at night and calling early in the morning as they move from roost to their next feeding location.. Similar to the Galah and Sulphur-crested Cockatoo they love to show off with their playful antics. These birds were feeding on the fallen cones of the Norfolk Pines, which are planted along the coast, near most beaches. Here are some of my pics on the day.

Here is an example of their affectionate preening and loving nature:

As we continued along the river walk, it was low tide, which made it ideal to view shorebirds. Our migratory birds were gone for the winter to Alaska and Siberia. The Silver Gull has a stunning orange features, and always looks immaculate and clean in the sun.

The Pied Oystercatcher was again out on the beach. This bird is listed as Endangered due to its beach nesting sites being overtaken by humans and dogs. Sadly, the beaches they nest on are near popular urban areas along our coast. This pair, which also mate for life, were also there. Note how they stick their head right below the water in search of food. While the female is off enjoying time alone, the male is trailed by their immature, which is almost mature. Note its black beak tip, pale pinkish legs and brownish plumage. These birds also pair for life.

On the tidal river flats, where in Summer we would normally see the Godwits, the Crested Tern are doing their usual rest on the sand in small family flocks. They always strike up interesting hairdos when the wind is blowing. I always love to catch them landing, as they have such long angelic wings. Note the immature Tern in flight with the dark wing markings. The matures have a grey plumage.

One last bird was noted alone on the mud flats. This bird is usually always seen here and is presently showing some breeding plumage. The White-faced Heron is our most common member of the Heron family found along our coastline.

This bird is featured in my book What Birds Teach Us, for it’s amazing patience.

After our walk we returned home, to a home cooked lunch. We decided to eat at home as there were many out and about being a weekend, and Covid is knocking people down like flies, especially since there are now several variants circulating. We thought suffering it once was enough. Also there is only a couple weeks before we go away for a month, and we are wanting to stay well. I will not be posting much in July, as we will be out of signal range for much of the time.


Have a wonderful week ! Get out and about birding while the weather is good. If this is your first visit to my blog and website, please take a few minutes to check out my pages on birding as well as check out my unique books which make perfect gifts for young and old.


While we were out enjoying a Sunday afternoon walk, my wife spotted this adult Rainbow Lorikeet high in a eucalypt tree, feeding its youngster. They will usually chew up some seed or fruit, and the juvenile will then lock beaks and remove and swallow it. Juvenile birds generally have dark beaks and eyes and less red or orange on the chest.

This juvenile Lorikeet will be happy and content while it is not feeling the sensation of hunger, otherwise it will become distressed, as a young child does when it cries, losing that happy state. It will persistently approach the parent with its urgent repetitive alarm call when hunger returns.

Happiness is a changeable expression of delight because it fluctuates. It is circumstantial, as it depends on what is happening at the time (our circumstances). Whereas joy is a positive constant spiritual reality that is defendant on hope. Research has shown that those who have a joyous hope are more often happier, kinder, more content, better able to manage their stress and able to work through difficult situations more peacefully. They also enjoy longevity. This survey was done against those who have a faith basis to their life (a belief in a future after death and a higher power) and those who have a fate basis (no higher power or active belief system that offers hope). My wife and I have enjoyed knowing our Father God and the joy, hope and peace He has brought to our lives, through resting our faith in His saving grace, through Jesus, through his death and resurrection, which has made us God’s friends. He has brought to our lives a peace and contentment this world could not give us.

Pied Currawong bathing with overflowing delight

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‘To introduce people to our unique Australian birds,

To learn from them how to live a healthy and happy life.’

© W. A. Hewson 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022.

13 Comments »

  1. Hello Ash,
    It is a joy to see the Little Corellas – their affection for each other and the joyfulness that is apparent in their “play.” I love how you captured the essence of family/community for all the birds – the Oystercatchers, Terns and Lorikeets especially. A reminder that we are not alone, and how we truly are sustained by the community around us. We are delighted that you and your wife were blessed with such wonderful viewings and that you were able to enjoy birding despite the ongoing COVID situation.

    Our blistering heat wave continues – the younger children and elderly folks, are especially at risk for heat stroke and death relating to heat stroke. COVID numbers have started to rise again steeply here too, sadly. We are trying to maintain a sense of balance despite the ongoing challenges.

    Thank you for sharing the wisdom of Joy, and for the messages of strength and encouragement through your posts. I hope to have an update email to you before you leave on holiday.

    Blessings to you and your wife!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Takami, it is always a joy to hear from you, and how you are both journeying in life. We are delighted you love our Little Corella as we do, they are such affectionate and fun loving birds, teaching us a better way to live.
      The importance of community among flock birds is a beautiful example to us, especially how each bird respects and values the flock and its leadership. We are experiencing much unrest against our state government at the moment regarding many issues, which highlights to the antithesis if this. We pray the heatwave will subside soon, as we know from the past two years of experiencing similar conditions and the devastating bushfires that accompanied it. A great price was paid in wildlife, homes and lives. You are always in our prayers and in our hearts dear friends.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Donna, yes the virus seems to be striking almost every family one way or the other here, those who missed out are now getting it, but life goes on as most are over it, and do not want the forced lock-downs again, as they devastated our economy. We are looking forward to new vistas and hopefully new birds 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for the Corella audio, I listened 3 times! Wonder what the ‘alarm’ was all about!
    I always appreciate your words of spiritual wisdom and encouragement. My pastor was just speaking of “joy” yesterday. I am seeking the Lord’s counsel as this joy often eludes me since a time of trauma and loss a few years ago.
    Thank you brother for another beautiful posting!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Lisa Beth, Sometimes the alarm is raised because one bird gets over cautious, but on the sound of it the whole flock will take flight. There were people with dogs walking by and bike riders, any one of them could have triggered a response as they are always very on guard as part of their built in survival training. I will be praying into your loss of joy dear sister as I know trauma and loss hurts so deeply and often leaves us broken. It is important that we do not bet ‘stuck’ in our depression, but work through our grief as God intended. Grief is for a time, as God prescribed it, to help us review our new normal, and step back into life with a renew perspective, allowing him to heal us. We will always have recalls of it, but do not allow the enemy the pleasure of using it to hurt you, rest in the Lord and know he is your peace and comfort. Worship and praise is a great weapon my dear sister. Psalm 31:7

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you so much Ashley for this wise counsel and encouragement. It truly speaks to my heart. And you’re so right about the enemy, he will magnify every dark thought.
        “Worship and praise is a great weapon my dear sister. Psalm 31:7” – yes indeed, I just read this verse, highlighted now in my Bible.
        Singing the Psalms always lifts my heart and I will do that more often.
        I’m very grateful brother, thank you for your kindness and prayer.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes, I grew up with these along the River. A handful are enjoyable. In flocks of 100s they so very noisy. They also seem to need to impress one another of their prowess and can be extremely destructive.
    We once photographed them unscrewing the shedbolts holding the galv roofing on a shed.

    Glad you were out and about and enjoying the sunshine and the time together

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks David, it is interesting that they would try to remove roof bolts, as this behaviour is similar to that of the New Zealand Kia which is one of the worlds most intelligent and extremely mischievous parrots. I always love watching the flock play when I get to see them. There is always a one or more that likes to show off in some way, or just roll on the grass with a mate. We have enjoyed our sunny days, but the mornings have been so cold, as you would know better than us, and the rain is soon to return. Enjoy your week, and time with your grandson.

      Like

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