Over the last 4 decades I have never seen more than one White-winged Triller at a time and probably only one sighting a decade.
Since early September, the Carapooee West area has been over-run with White-winged Trillers.
Below- male White-winged Trller
Using fencelines as lookout posts they have spent weeks pouncing on unwary grubs in the short grasses- so many grubs, probably army worms, that the birds would have to have a spell on the fence for half an hour at a time before looking for more.
I counted 35 + birds one day and although numbers have fallen in the last couple of weeks, the remaining birds have taken up residence in the acacias in the top paddock (revegetation).Perhaps they will be so impressed with the conservation works and direct seeding that they will choose to nest.
At the same time as the big influx occurred, there also appeared a pair of Crimson Chats, a first for our area and rejected by BIrdlife Australia's Atlas until I plugged the photos in.
These brilliant little birds have been seen as far afield as Rupanyup and Newstead so the Central Desert species are coming to St Arnaud
Below- making use of a new fence, male WW Triller, Crimson Chat and female WW Triller
Below- male Crimson Chat and female White-winged Triller in foreground
Last week, pandemonium in the chookyard was the result of a loafing Square-tailed Kite- not that he or she wanted a take-away poultry dinner but I didn't take any chances. Sorry about the bad photo but you don't get a second chance with this bird.
The same afternoon I was visited by a ferocious female Brown Goshawk who was not leaving until she had caught dinner( I put all the chooks away very smartly).
I bet it was a honeyeater she got- wouldn't look at the sparrows, would she!( No geese!)
This bird still has some of the juvenile's vertical chevron banding on her chest and on her collar as it gives way to the beautiful close horizontal bands
Today, Friday 25th Oct- a Cockatiel has turned up here- the first for many years so the drought is really biting further north and we can expect more unusual sightings in the weeks and months to come.
No photos of this one as yet.