Snapshots: From Hope Street

It’s a little known factoid, that EE and I walk along the Werribee River near our unit most mornings. Weather permitting we do it before breakfast, and during the winter months that means the start is before daylight.
One of the access streets near our village is Hope Street. Now a friend of mine would like to add “NO” to the front of it, but I have those sorts of acquaintances. Some might even suggest that I attract them.

A highlight of our egress along Hope Street is greeting a friendly pair of Australian Magpies that have made the area their territory.  She has had five nestings over the years since we’ve been passing. Her male has a damaged leg, and he is unable to stand or hunt on the ground. He is however quite capable of perching on fences and lamposts.

A few weeks back as I walked down Hope Street, a rambling carolling call from directly overhead stopped me.  Looking up, I saw Maggie sitting in her newly installed “Grand Design” nest.  Enterprising lass had used lots of discarded building material, wire, plastic and the like to add a new story to last year’s nest.

Fast forward a couple of weeks and I took the camera down at first light to see how things were going.



Just a few days into her nest cycle and its easy to see she has been working to get home designer of the year awards.
This is the male. Sadly I call him “One Legged”, but he doesn’t seem to mind
Here he is about to land on the ground as he’s seen a likely source of food
And look how well they have grown.  Three big fat healthy young.  This is taken early morning first light.
Mum, over looking her young
Late afternoon sunshine. The third one has its head out the back
Mum arriving with a snack. She is either being fed by some neighbour, or is helping herself to someone’s dog food.
And down it goes. The young seem to know at this stage who’s turn it is to be feed
I love family portraits
Hey Mum, look what we can do.  A little wing stretch to show off
My what great big long legs you’ve got under there.
The never ending search for food continues
While Mum’s away time for a brush up on flying technique.  The third one has moved to the front of the nest
They may be small wings now, but soon the they will be airborne
And after some play, its time to settle down for a nap
Dad makes use of all the best flat perches to keep an eye on the kids and any marauding wattlebirds or aggressive  mudlarks.


UPDATE  27th September 2018
They flew today.  The nest is now officially “Empty”.
Now I have to find where she has them settled.


13 thoughts on “Snapshots: From Hope Street

    1. Hi Eleanor, we’ve been pretty quiet of late, not much bird activity about and weather that has been less than kind. I’m amazed at her ingenuity and boldness to work in such an area. Also that the pair’s fidelety is not affected by his damaged leg as it must severely hamper his hunting abilities.
      They certanly are going to be busy in a few days when the young ones get mobile.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. G’day, I’ve never had a problem with them swooping me, but not to say that I’ve had a few close encounters at low level as they go speeding up or down the roadway seeing of wattlebirds and the like. Its pretty awesome to here the wing running in those rapidly beating wings.


    1. G,day Derek, I thought the stuff was a plastic, its just a bit too high up to grab. But there is all sorts of coloured insulated wire, pegs, bits of cloth, plastic bag and the like spread all the way.
      What is so outstanding is the stripping. Its festooned over all the tree. Surely its more than one piece.
      Its at least a second year nest, In the first photo you can still see where the ‘new’ layer has been added.
      Too much fun


  1. What a wonderful snap shot family album of your local Maggies David. You must be accepted as friend and on good terms as i am with your locals, not to be attacked. That is such a good feeling, to be able to relax and worry when you pass by or observe. Such a buzz to be able to look into the nest so well. I find they nest so high up in the eucalypts that you do not get a good view. Have a wonderful week watching these guys fledge.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi AB,
      Thanks for dropping by and the lovely comments.
      I’ve found that there are around 6-8 pairs in the local area and almost all of them have gone for nests in the open treeline, and generally not too high up.
      There is two exceptions down along the river one is high up in the open, the other clever bird that she is, has yet to invite me home for a visit. (eg, I can’t find where she is located.)
      Jon Young in What the Robin Knows talks at length about the building of trust with birds, and Maggies are no exception.
      One of my flickr friends has seen quite a bit of research on their recognition skills and the ability to count. Reasoning has always seemed to me to be a Maggie trait.

      I’m looking forward to seeing the young out and about as that is always fun.


      Liked by 1 person

  2. G’day David, this is such a great story worth telling and photographing. Magpies are also one my favourite Aussie mates and their antics are always interesting to watch like their amazing songs.
    Thanks for sharing,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Adam,
      I’ve been a bit quiet of late on the blog as there really hasn’t been much to report. We had high hopes of a Spotted Harrier, but it seems to have disappeared—again! Most of the small bush birds have moved or are at nest. The Eastern Yellow Robins we normally track in the You Yangs are not visible, so its been quite a dry spell for us.
      Lots of Black-shouldered Kites moved through, but then just as quickly left.
      And the weather has been less than kind.
      Still its the challenge of going out and being in the right place.

      Good luck, keep taking pictures, we do.!


G'day, Please feel free to Leave a Reply. Now auto approved

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s