Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo
The Carnaby’s Black Cockatoos were out and about in the northern suburbs for several weeks again, and now they’ve disappeared as quickly as they arrived.
They seem to come in early spring and feast on the flowers and bushes in the reserves. I think it’s the time of year now when they breed, so maybe they fill up before flying off to their breeding grounds.
On the Lookout
It’s really hard to think of them as being on the critically endangered list when they are so obvious in the area. They’re very noisy, they travel in huge flocks sometimes, and they let me get within a few metres of them when they’re feeding. When I think of endangered animals, I tend to think of solitary, shy animals that live in really remote places that will be very hard to spot. But the cockatoos make sure that everyone knows when they arrive.
Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo flying over
The picture below was taken in Quinns Rocks, and you can see how big the flocks are. I counted over 200 together on the reserve that day. Their numbers have halved over the past 50 years though, so there are huge conservation efforts to try and increase their numbers again. Hopefully, in a few months time, they’ll be back again but with some youngsters with them too.
Flocks in the Suburbs
Caversham Wildlife Park – Barking owl
This week’s pictures are of captive birds. We had an outing over the Easter break to Caversham WIldlife Park, mainly to see the koalas and wombats. I had no idea how big it was or how much there was to see and do there. As well as all the marsupials there were lots of native birds on show.
In one of the ‘meet and greet’ sessions there were owls and ‘parroty types’. Feel free to correct me if I’ve identified them wrongly.
I love being stared out by owls. This one is a frogmouth. I’m still not entirely sure whether a frogmouth is an owl or not.
Major Mitchell’s Cockatoo
The parrots and cockatoos were entertaining as ever – so intelligent and playful.
- Upside down
They were keen not to be out-done by the wombat and were showing off their best moves for us.
Then outside there were enclosures with birds from different states.
This stone-curlew was fairly well hidden until it started to stand up. If it hadn’t moved I may have missed it.
I couldn’t end without showing the cutest marsupial of the day. It’s called a bettong – a tiny, tiny kangaroo. It was surrounded by visitors, but just fell asleep, upside down, in the arms of its keeper. With his feet in the air, he quite happily slept through the action as all the visitors gently stroked his tummy.
Carnabys Black Cockatoo feeding
It’s time for an update on several of my previous posts.
In my post on the Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo I said that if you wanted to see them, then you’d be certain to see them at Yanchep National Park. A few weeks later I visited and didn’t see, or hear any of them. They seem to have largely dispersed and small groups of them can be seen all over the northern suburbs, in areas I hadn’t ever seen them before. Presumably this is due to their breeding season, or possibly after a particular source of food. Several of them were feeding in a neighbour’s tree when I took the picture above.
Musk Duck displaying
I mentioned in my AussieBirdLife post about the musk duck how he would use his tail when displaying. This duck decided to give me a demonstration, incorporating all his best moves at once, like in this picture.
Musk Duck’s tail
He opens his beak to let out a loud ‘honk’, holds his chin up to stretch his leathery flap, throws his tail over his back, and caps it off will a big splash of water with his feet.
No news is good news on the ospreys. They haven’t started nesting, but then a local wildlife warden told me that they don’t normally nest in this region until September. It’s usually in northern Australia that they nest in May/June time. I had a spell of a few weeks when I hadn’t seen them, but I’ve seen them both together again this week. So maybe I’ll have a nesting update in a couple of months time.