Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The local Kookaburras



This is our back yard.

I feed these characters on a regular basis.  There are nine regulars.  Obviously two had business elsewhere when this photo was taken.  .

Most will take the food from my hand.  They had learnt to open their beaks and I could throw the food in, but then the marauding butcher birds would swoop at just the right moment and catch it mid-way between me and said beak.  

They all have their own personalities.

Different ways of opening their beak.

Different ways of taking food from my hand from delicately picking it out from between my finger and thumb to taking half the length of a finger along too.

Different engagement with me, from the one who likes to take the food and then drop it, and look me in the eye as is to say "Tricked you!" to the one who is a mite fearful, will not eat out of my hand but will stay, nervously, if I throw from a metre and a half away. 

And they obviously have a status order of some sort.  Some will not eat if another particular one is there, or is not there.  Some will argue with certain others, cackling angrily.  

I can imagine the first settlers to this country first hearing the sound of a "Laughing Jackass" and being totally freaked by it.  It is eerie!

And, of course, they will insist on sitting really close together if they are friends, which means that they will help themselves to their neighbour's food if he gives them half a chance.    

It an enormous privilege to be able to interact with them, 

and an enormous pleasure!!
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