Afternoon Visitors

Weather wise, yesterday wasn’t much to write home about. The day was wet cold and grey. Even though it is spring here in Australia, the days have been more like winter. Then, late in the afternoon, the sun broke out, and bathed everything in a beautiful light.

It was then I spotted this pair perched outside my kitchen window. With my camera in hand, I slowly stepped out onto the back deck and started snapping away.

A male Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis)
The female Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis)
Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis)

It is amazing how close I can get to these wild birds. I am rarely disappointed in getting close-up photos when the King Parrots visit.

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Superb Fairy-wrens

The Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus) has been voted as Australia’s favourite bird. And, when the male is in full breeding colours, it is easy to see why he is such a standout.

The following photographs are of a pair the have been appearing in my backyard for about 5 or 6 years, now. They have given me great joy being able to watch their antics and the satisfaction of capturing their photo on numerous occassions.

Male Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus) in full breeding colours
Female Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

This breeding season, however, a new pair seem to have moved into the neighbourhood. They were difficult to capture with the camera, but my persistence eventually paid off.

Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

She stopped long enough for a sing-song. Perhaps she was happy to be chased by this handsome male.

Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

Like many small birds, they move fast and do not stop in one spot for long. This pair were no exception and I consider myself fortunate to have a record of their visit.

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A Handsome Bird

While not as colourful as other birds that visit my backyard, the Grey Shrike-thrush (Colluricincla harmonica) is still a handsome bird, in my opinion.

Grey Shrike-thrush (Colluricincla harmonica)
Grey Shrike-thrush (Colluricincla harmonica)
Grey Shrike-thrush (Colluricincla harmonica)

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I am the copyright holder of all photographs that appear on this blog. Please respect my copyright.

Breeding Season

As we approach spring here, in Australia, breeding season is about to start for many of our birds. Recently, on a visit to the Botanic Gardens at Williamstown, I photographed a pair of Long-billed Corellas which had made their nest in the hollow of a Palm Tree.

Usually, these birds would find a hollow in a large Eucalypt. Long-billed Corellas breed from August until December and will lay two to four eggs.

Long-billed Corellas (Cacatua tenuirostris)

Galahs become mates for life and form permanent pairs. Easily identified by her red irises, the female will lay 2 – 4 eggs.

Breeding season for Galahs, in the south of Australia, is July to December.

A mated pair of Galahs (Eolophus roseicapillus)
A female Galah (Eolophus roseicapillus)

In this photograph, the female bird has a dirty face, which she would have gotten from working on her nesting hollow.

Crimson Rosella (Platycercus elegans)

Crimson Rosellas (Platycercus elegans) breed from September to January. They nest in tree hollows high in tall Eucalypts, laying four to eight eggs.

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Hide and Seek

This male Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis) played a game of hide and seek with me. As I sat on my front verandah, he kept his eyes firmly on me. Then, for just a split second, he came into clear sight, framed by the foliage he was using to hide behind.

Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis)

The male Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis) is the only Australian parrot with a redhead.

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Another Close Encounter

In a previous post, I wrote and shared photos, of how I was able to get up close to a Sulphur-crested Cockatoo. A couple of days ago, I had the same experience with an Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis).

Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis)

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I am the copyright holder of all photographs that appear on this blog. Please respect my copyright.

Galahs in the Garden

The following photographs are the result of a quick walk around my yard, camera in hand.

The Galah (Eolophus roseicapillus) is an endemic species of Cockatoo recorded only in Australia. It is coloured grey and pink. There are three races: Race roseicapillus; Race albiceps; Race kuhli.

A mated pair of Galahs (Eolophus roseicapillus) share a moment
Female Galah (Eolophus roseicapillus)

A female Galah is easily identified by her red irises.
Judging by the dirty face of this female, it appears she has been busy in the tree hollow tending to her motherly duties. Breeding season for Galahs, in the south of Australia, is July to December. She will lay 2 – 4 eggs.

Forming permanent pairs, Galahs become mates for life. Their young will have duller colours with grey about the face and breast.

Another female Galah (Eolophus roseicapillus)

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Getting Up Close

I am often amazed at how close some wild birds will allow me to get. Slow steady movement is required; any sudden moves and the subject is gone.

Sulphur-crested Cockatoo (Cacatua galerita)

This Sulphur-crested Cockatoo had landed on a branch near my back deck. Although nervous, it allowed me to get within a couple of metres, and take this portrait.

Australian King Parrot (Alisterus scapularis)

This portrait of a young Australian King Parrot was a little easier to take. On a hot summer’s day, it was intent on getting a cool drink.

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I am the copyright holder of all photographs that appear on this blog. These images are protected by copyright laws and all rights are reserved.

Spotted Pardalote

At 8 – 10cms in length, the Spotted Pardalote (Pardalotus punctatus) is one of Australia’s smallest birds. Over the past few weeks, I have been fortunate enough to take many photographs of this beautiful bird.

Spotted Pardalote

Spotted Pardalote (Pardalotus punctatus)

The male bird is easily identified by its bright colours and white spots. So far, I have only seen the female fleetingly. She did not sit still long enough for a photo. The female Spotted Pardalote has yellow spots.

Spotted PardaloteSpotted Pardalote

The Spotted Pardalote is also called the Diamond Bird or Jewellery Bird.

Spotted PardaloteSpotted Pardalote

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Breeding Season

I have a pair of Superb Fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus) resident in my backyard. Over the past few weeks, I have taken a series of photographs of the transformation of the male bird as he changes into his breeding colours.

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Male Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

The above photo shows the male bird in eclipse plumage. Other than his brighter blue tail and his black bill, for the winter he looks much like his female mate.

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Female Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

P8317608-Superb Fairy-wren.jpg

Start of the moult – Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

Within a few days of my first photo, the start of the moult was evident.

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Superb Fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus)

As the days go by, his breeding colours become more evident.

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Superb Fairy-wrens (Malurus cyaneus)

In this photo the moult is complete. He proudly wears his full breeding colours.

Please Note:
I am the copyright holder of all photographs that appear on this blog. These images are protected by copyright laws and all rights are reserved. To purchase a print please contact me by leaving a comment below with your order and contact details. I will then get back to you.