Backyard Birds of Marilee’s Backyard

I said I’d update you about Crow Away and I try not to lie

This is a post about birds. I love birds. I have recently become a bit of a birder. (That’s a thing. Look it up). One of the ways I know this, is that I asked for, and then received a pair of binoculars for my birthday from Dan! And I don’t just use them for spying on weirdos that drive by on their boats doing calisthenics. I use them for honest to goodness, bird-watching!

Fine. Both.

The other way you know I’m serious is that I don’t just have one bird-spotting guide. I have two. And they’re different! So there’s that. I am a birder.

Evidence of my being a birder. Also of having great taste in furniture.
Evidence of my being a birder. Also of having great taste in furniture.

Another way you know this is that I participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count of 2017. On different days I would sit in my backyard for 20 minutes at a time with an app on my phone and record how many of what kinds of birds I saw!! One day I saw 71 birds!! In 20 minutes!!

The birds that we see around here are many and varied.

But one thing most of them have in common is a need for water. So I got a bird bath – the beautiful base was hand made (so he says) by a guy at the Kingscliff Markets not far from my house. You’ll see it feature in a number of pics. I have also tried to put out bird feeders, but so far seem only to be able to draw birds I don’t like (a.k.a. crows and magpies and seagulls). So the quest continues.

But since I’m talking about crows I’ll let you know that the Crow Away CD worked like a charm!! Within half day of playing it on repeat in the backyard, the crows were gone. About two months later, a handful came back, I played the CD a couple times and they were gone. It’s gone on like that – with a new group swinging by every few months, but as soon as I play the CD, they fly away!!

So that’s good news!

What’s that? You want to see some of the pics of some of the birds? Ok, I guess!

thumb_thumb_DSC_7367_1024_1024
This is a willie wagtail! We get them in pairs in our backyard, combing through the freshly mown lawn for bugs. They get their name because they wiggle their backside like a sassy toddler. So cute! This one is not in our backyard, this is in the yard of the  Trotter family who generously invited us to the magical farm!
thumb_DSC_8419_1024
This is a pair of (I believe) Rainbow Bee-eaters – hanging out in one of the trees on a hillside in Kingsthorpe in the evening. Lovely birds! We saw them on a little hike with our friends M & N (identities have been withheld because I have no idea if they want their names out there on the internet or not).
thumb_DSC_8348_1024
One of my faves! This is a kookaburra – they have an amazing call – look it up! This is just outside our backyard.
thumb_DSC_8205_1024
Two of my faves in one picture! This is an Australian Pelican and an Antarctic Tern, both after the same school of fish.
thumb_IMG_20160327_132203_1024
This is a closer look at a Kookaburra – sadly, this one is in captivity.
thumb_IMG_0514_1024
Speaking of captivity, here are some ducks and hens from someone’s backyard farm. Aussies call chickens chooks! These ones are in a backyard in Brisbane – so progressive!
thumb_IMG_20150829_155828_1024
We interrupt this post about birds to talk about how urbanisation has devastated bird populations. Here is an exhibit in Sydney that we stumbled on in our first week – a tribute to the birds who’ve been pushed out by urban sprawl.
thumb_IMG_0426_1024
This is a Bushstone Curlew – checking out his reflection in the mirror.
thumb_IMG_0332_1024
I like the Bushstone Curlew’s cause they always look like they’re giving you the stink eye. They’re terrified of humans but insist on breeding in residential parks and neighbourhoods – I admire their pluckiness.
thumb_DSC_8733_1024
Here we have Dan, kayaking up to what we call, Pelican island, about a 10 minute paddle from our house.
thumb_DSC_8529_1024
You can tell I like Kookaburras can’t you! This one is hanging out on the fence of our backyard, making my day.
thumb_DSC_8341_1024
The rainbow lorikeets are another of my favourite birds here in Australia. They usually fly around in pairs our fouros and are generally gorgeous – but their call is shrill and unpleasant.
thumb_DSC_8311_1024
An Eastern Rosella – for the longest time I thought these were lovebirds. This is why I am glad to have the bird spotting guides!
thumb_DSC_8176_1024
Here we see some fearless magpies, checking out Abby. Abby is drooling and fantasising about chomping down on one of these bad boys.
thumb_DSC_8162_1024
I used to like these guys until my friend Mack from America told me they’re considered the rats of the sky – carrying disease wherever they go. I still kind of like them.
thumb_DSC_8795_1024
At the Australia Zoo (think Steve Irwin), we went to the bird show – it was amazing and tragic.
DSC_9041
DSC_9042 This sombre specimen is a Frogmouth – I think a Tawny Frogmouth, but I honestly have no idea. This was the first time I’d ever seen one when we visited Tanya and Gareth out camping in Murwillembah.
IMG_0920
This was a pair of Red Tailed Black Cockatoos. We tried to walk past them on the boardwalk in Townsville and they squawked at us until we came back and said hi.
IMG_0705
Once while out for breakfast we saw a guy out walking his parrots. No idea what kind. Or why he was out walking his parrots on a leash.
ibises
Here is a handful of Sacred Ibis having a pit stop at my bird bath. Some locals call them bin chickens!
DSC_9099
This chap just started hanging around the other day. It’s a white faced heron!
DSC_9093
Another pic of the white faced heron out our backyard!
DSC_9092
This is a Crested Pigeon. They just look like they have mohawks. I like them.
DSC_9081
These guys hang around all the time. My best guess is a noisy miner or some kind of thing like that?
IMG_0597
This is a gang of sulphur crested cockatoos, hanging out by my bird bath. (Sighs with happiness)
IMG_20160327_161034
Feeding the lorikeets at Currumbin Wildlife sanctuary.
DSC_0031 (1)
And another of the ibises – these are on North Stradbroke Island on the beach. They’re everywhere.

Thus concludes my post about birds. Or my first post about birds. I like them enough that there may come a second post one day.

Watch this space.

5 thoughts on “Backyard Birds of Marilee’s Backyard”

  1. I also love the birds, but as you know, we don’t have as many choices here. I have a Robin that sings to me morning and evening, and I love it. The magpies have chased away the nice birds. We had peregrine falcons for a few years, but they are gone. The odd time I see a different species.
    I am somewhat of a birder myself. I have had a Readers Digest Bird book for years, and always mark the birds that I see. Oh, I forgot to mark the doves that I saw. I am not a REAL border like yourself – I don’t have binoculars.
    The names of your birds are colourful as well, but “Willie wagtail ” is just a bit indecent.
    I did see a hummingbird on the clothesline once. It apparently didn’t see me standing 3 feet away, and I got to watch it for about a minute! I felt like I had been given a little gift.
    I love the idea that there is a cd to keep crows away! Passive non-violence…
    I need a cd like that to scare away compulsive talkers! (Wierd men, dogs that jump up, telemarketers, neighbors with no boundaries)

    1. Haha! I think I partially got my love of birds from you – I remember you used to draw them and I loved those drawings! You have to see the Willie Wagtail do his thing – its really cute! It’s pretty innocent in real life 😉 I feel like blasting bag pipes solos would keep away the weird men and neighbours but it might aggravate the jumpy dogs. I’m not sure what impact it would have on telemarketers…

    1. Thanks Marion! Yes we’d love that! If you’re in the neighbourhood look us up! Or if you want an ocean-getaway, come stay the weekend! PS. You might recognise the photo at the top – the Rumours wine – I took that photo in your dining room!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *