The backlog is getting to me. Can’t seem to find the few minutes to write even some halfway coherent stuff to make it worthwhile blogging.
But it would seem, in more ways than one, that Spring is upon us. The early blossoming plum, almond and peach trees are a real giveaway. The slowly decaying winter wattles, and of course the lack of Flame Robins in the Backpaddock, or anywhere for that matter.
We’ve spent a few hours over the past few days, between the high winds, and the torrential downpours, trying to eek the last few great shots out of the dwindling numbers of Flame Robins in the Woodlands Park.
I know when spring is here, they sit on branches and deliver that lovely rolling rollicking song, and then within a week or so, its quiet.
One of the techniques we use to photograph birds is work out the territories, and so more easily predict (?),- is that the right word?- where they may be. As spring and obviously the nesting season fast approaches, its nice to have that all figured out before the female sets up house an then goes furtive and we hardly see either of them.
For the Red-caps its a scarce time, for the Scarlet Robins, its almost impossible to determine where in the large territory she might choose.
So we decided to have a look at a couple of pairs of Eastern Yellow Robins. Not because I want to know where the nests are so I can set up and annoy her, quite the contrary. If I know there is a nest in that area over there, then I’ll do my best to stay away from it and give her the privacy she needs. So we generally sit back about 30-40 metres and watch what takes place. If they hunt or perch out near where we are sitting we enjoy the moments. But we don’t chase them. It is after all said and done. Their living room.
Last season we had a bumper time with Jack and Jill, two really lovely Eastern Yellow Robins that got to the stage that when EE came by they would flutter down to see what she was up to. Made for great photography.
We’ve tried to look for them in the old territory a few times since without success. No idea where they’ve gone. Torquay? But, today, it seemed like a reasonable morning to have a bit of a sit in the bush and just see. And we did, and we didn’t see them at all. Usually within the hour or so, we’d have spotted at least one of them working the logs and greenery. But not so. So we spent an extra hour just in case they were late sleepers. But. No.
We like the sitting part, as it helps work out who and what else is in the area and can work out predator patterns, other forest users, where the Goshawks are going to nest, and how many Superb Fairy wrens can there be in one colony.
So armed with our knowledge we began the trip home. We diverged from the track to have a quick look in another territory, as there was a pair there last season, but very furtive birds, I probably only got about 3 or 4 photos of them in the entire season.
Not a minute of the track, and she flew by laden with Spider Web. Then another trip, then stopping by the tree we were standing near, she proceeded to gather more web and was gone. To return to strip bark from another tree, and go.
Now, we might be considered to be a bit on the slow side, but by now both of us had concluded. She’s nesting. And she was. Then he came by with a big grub, and topped her up, and away she went again. So at least one pair have taken the Spring time as here.
No doubt we’ll see more of this pair as thing progress.