Blogging 101 Day 4

Today, dear Reader, it’s all about…. You!

Well at least that is what the assignment says.   And as this is not for profit, not political, not competitive, and essentially about the birds, the process of audience profile, identification, and finding the niche in the market, leaves me just a bit blah, and pretty much over Blogging 101.

Still its always nice to be prompted to look at things from another perspective. Keeps us fresh.

I practice Tai Chi, (there a new factoid), and one of the reasons is an awareness of the constantly changing orientation of the body, its parts relative to each other and to the surroundings. And funnily enough when I get to the bush, the same kinds of awareness helps to appreciate the birds and their surrounds. (maybe I’m just getting old and mellow?)

Parenting in the You Yangs

We, EE and I, have been working for several months now, with a delightful pair of Eastern Yellow Robins as they accept the challenge of adding their little bit to the gene pool.

As EE has adopted this pair, I’ve been a bit reluctant to pursue them as well.  Figuring that parenting a young Eastern Yellow Robin is difficult enough.  For the un-initiated, she sits on the eggs for around two weeks, then they feed the young, (usually two, but this pair had one) for about two weeks.

Then it jumps from the nest, flutters to the ground and spend the next 3-4 weeks hiding in the leaflitter.  Barely able to fly as it has no real flight feathers at this stage, it must surely be among some of the most vulnerable of birds. But, the process works.

So, finding this well disguised and cleverly marked tiny bird is typical needle in haystack stuff.  See point above about awareness and you’ll begin to grasp what goes on at the location.  Not that we are chasing the bird. Far from it. Sometimes I really just want to know where it is, so we don’t inadvertently stand on it. Or more probably flush it to a new location. Bad for it, stressful for the parents, and against my work ethic. See border box.

We have pretty much been unable to distinguish the female from the male, so really not much point, as Jack Sparrow (should be a Cap’n in there somewhere) says, Naming fingers and pointing names.

Now as the young bird is much more mobile, it has become somewhat easier to sit, wait and opportunistically,  it will fly by and sit.  And it did.

I knew where it was pretty much from the moment we got off the track and into the scrub.  See point on Awareness above. How?  Well let’s just say Mum told me.

After bringing it down for us to admire, and then feeding it a great big grub, she decided that was sufficient activity for the moment and a big sleep would do wonders for the little bird.

After much body language, and a really interesting ‘fluffed up’ head, the little dude took off the the undergrowth for a sleep.  And this is where I reckon it gets really interesting.
Not just anywhere out of sight and hidden, but in the bush next to where I’d been sitting.

The distance measured by the camera through the bushes to the little dude is less than 4 metres.  It snuggled up on a branch with Dad (?) nearby and Mum (?) on guard on a tree directly above.

Point is, I’m still having the hair on the back of my neck stand up about it. The choice was hers  to sit in that close to me.  I didn’t move. Jon Young calls it a Rite of Passage, in a world in which “Connection” has to do with the strength of your mobile fone signals;  sitting still for the sacred and connected moments brings dramatic benefits. A full-contact nature sport!


The mantle feathers are beginning to take on the lovely olive green
The chest and side Chevron markings of babyhood are well gone and coming through the brown are the distinguishing yellow feathers.
Completely at home now, on the wing. Strong and direct flight.
Hey, food. I’m up here.
Time for a sleep my little one. Mum has a fluffed out head, and while not visible hear a flicking tail.
Awe, but I want to play with the photographer a bit more
DWJ_4618 (1)
Mum?’s fluffed up head and tail flicking were a signal to move on.
The selected sleeping spot, with (Dad?) to sit with.
Settled in, not more than 4m from me, and ready to drop off to sleep. Awesome moment



4 thoughts on “Blogging 101 Day 4

  1. A lovely series of shots on the young’un. I haven’t seen one before in that stage of colouration and it was interesting to see the yellowish/green plumage becoming more developed.


    1. Hi Rodger, it is now pretty much a ‘full’ grown bird, just waiting for the moult to finish. When very young and see Dorothy’s Flickr, as I’ve let her take most of the young shots, the little brown ball is covered with white chevron feathers and these are prefect for hiding in the leaf litter. Its almost impossible to locate as it stays perfectly still. No turning, swaying or moving. Rock steady. I’ve missed them more than one or twice.
      Hopefully by this time next week the yellow will be on the chest and the bird will look really scruffy. Hopefully we can find it again.


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