Little Visit Off the Couch: Hot off the Press

Now into the third week of a six week isolation lockdown, it’s been very challenging to find suitable images for the day to day lives of the birds we work with.
In spite of the “We’re all in this together”, mantra, the birds don’t seem to have taken it too heart much, and haven’t been lined up in the street outside waiting for me.
We also don’t have any real suitable birding areas to walk by in our 1 hour a day “exercise” allowance.

But there are quite a number of storm water run-off drains and basins, throughout the suburb and several of them are within easy walking, and two are directly on the way to the local supermarket.
Every year Masked Lapwings gather to use the various open paddocks, drains and basins to creche their young. One pair has always chosen the grass verge between a dual carriage way.  And try as the parents might, it always ends in disaster as the little tykes run about on the road.  Not much between a fully laden Mac truck at 80+ kph and a baby lapwing.

One enterprising pair have located into a paddock directly behind said supermarket and as they are well protected by a 3m high chain mesh fence, and sharing the location with two rather large goats, they seem fairly secure, and have two spritely young.

A second pair have taken advantage of an unused house block and the nest is almost dead-centre in the middle of the block. No access for me. 🙂

A third pair, are using a run off basin that is also used as a local scratch-match footy oval, soccer-field, dog walking and mountain bike area. However restrictions have given them pretty much run of the area, and on the couple of times I’ve visited early in the morning, they seem to have four young on the go.  Not easy to find, and I for one am not venturing out into the open field for a closer looksee.

A fourth pair, and subject of the blog. (Didn’t think I was going to get here did you!) have taken up ownership of an open storm water runoff drain.
EE located them the other morning, and I thought a trip by with my biggest shopping bag was in order.  They seem  to only have one that has survived. But it is doing quite well.  On my first visit, it spent most of the time running about on a disused concrete footpath above the drain as the surrounding grass verge was particularly thick and over grown.
But in the meantime, the council, bless their environmental cleanup hearts have moved into the drain with mowers and brush-cutters and turned it into a “V’ shaped version of a bowling green.

Look as we might we were unable to see if the little dude had survived or where the anxious parents might have relocated it.

However, all is well.  This morning on the milk run, I found it back in the same area and sprinting up and down the footpath.

So hot off the press.


From the Global Headquarters of The Doona Hermit.

The day before the grass on the verge was over its head.
An adult that is ready to defend its prize.
Ready to run.
Still plenty of hiding spots on the far side of the footpath
Stepping into the sunshine
Get set. Go!

A tiny wing shake.