Little Journeys: Around the Block

Was chatting with my local Barista, Steve, this morning, and he said, “I am over 2020, and am not going to bother to apply for involvement in 2021.”

Easy to identify with the frustration. Their business is hanging on by ‘take-away’ coffee and food.  He said that they enjoyed table service and the clientele and the community that comes from that and for now he is just plodding on day by day.

EE and I have been taking a morning ‘exercise’ before breakfast around the block. Well, actually a couple of blocks.
What we have discovered in our perambulations, is a number of Masked Lapwings that have taken to nesting in small park areas that have been relatively quiet since the lockdown.

I’ve featured the “Quads” before, and they are all now quite experienced flyers.  And are beginning to look quite dapper in their changing wardrobe.


A couple of streets further on, and a small linking pathway between two housing estates had enough grass to allow another pair a home for their young.
These little dudes are now about two weeks hatched and the adults are moderately tolerant of passing traffic. The young are just starting to lose the baby feathers as the richer dappled juvenile plumage comes through.

And as we swing for home, a children’s playground has become a nursery.
The council mowed the lawns yesterday, and were kind enough to mow around Mum sitting on her precious little nest.
Somebody, (perhaps the council worker ) also has erected a sign to help. Hopefully she will be ok, but has at least two more weeks to hatch.


Finally the little water retarding basin near the local supermarket, on the way for a milkrun had two new visitors this morning. A couple of Hoary-headed Grebe graced the water.
Not sure if they are moving in, as the ponds also support at least one Australian Grebe.

And no photos, but we have found seven Magpie-lark nests.  Mostly buried in trees along the main road so a bit hard to photograph without attracting attention.

Little Journeys indeed.

10 thoughts on “Little Journeys: Around the Block

  1. In a way, it’s macro birdwatching, isn’t it, as our world shrinks down to the 5 km radius around the home and we travel around the area on the lookout for anything avian. Good luck with keeping your Grebes in your little basin. I kept a Magpie chick company for a while this morning in the little park at the end of our street, while we both waited for a parent to turn up. After quite a while, Dad turned up, to the satisfaction of both the chick and me.

    Let’s hope all goes well with your little chicks and the nesting mother.

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    1. Hello Eleanor, it is a bit, isn’t it. Sort of enjoying things that we normally would just hurry past. We also had a Hobby sail overhead this morning, bit a distance, but its the first raptor I’ve seen in since July.
      I guess the grebes will come and go. Not much in the basin to really keep them there as it is only a drain at best.
      Tough with the the little dudes out and about. I suppose its a bit easy to get anxious about the little ones because they seem so vulnerable. I hold my breath each time we go looksee at the local swans, and then sigh with relief when I can count Five! not sure what I’ll think if they are not there, or the number goes down.

      We did have a pair of Lapwings that persisted in nesting on the median strip of a major roadway. Year after year they have come, and year after year, the little ones run on the road in front of the B-doubles thundering past, and Mum goes back to lay more eggs and the process repeats. I’ve not seen her get any past the first week or so.
      But the others seem pretty secure for the most part. The “Quads” are pretty much self-sufficient and I expect anyday to see them gone and perhaps the female attempting another clutch. Time will tell.

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  2. Lovely to see them in your ‘hood’, David! And lovely images! I must admit I agree with Steve about this year but live in hope of life next year. It is great that we have birds locally, I am very grateful for the Tawnies, and I must pop up to the school now to see them. We are seeing the odd raptor overhead – always when I am ‘sans appareil-photo’!
    Great to see at least some of the Lapwing chicks surviving and growing.

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    1. Just a quick update. I can’t be certain but I think the Tawnies have hatched, possibly just one at this stage. Dad was sitting ‘high’ on the nest and a one point seemed to be ‘fussing’ with something below.

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    2. G,day David, i am walking much later than I would pre-lockdown, but I think at least into the future, (day light saving and all) that I’ll try to keep up the walk around when the sun is up. Makes my brekkie a bit later, so it might have to become brunch. 🙂
      My waist line could probably deal with that. 🙂

      Glad to hear about the Tawnies. I tried the old river area, but they seem to have moved from there this season.

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  3. Hi David, thanks for continuing to share. I’m sorry I’ve been so busy on my own projects I’ve been so absent this year. But will be back one day. Love these pics and the sign warning about the nest. How kind of them to do that! Take care!

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    1. G,day Derek, surprisingly, in this time at home, there are a number of sites I’ve stopped following. Simply can’t keep up with all of it even though time no longer seems a premium.
      Hope things are going well and we might be able to catchup sometime along the track

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  4. Lovely little outing David around the block capturing the new arrivals doing well in their first few weeks. It is so much better that you can get out a bit more now and not feel guilty about toting the lens. The Lapwings are great survivors and team workers. We enjoyed table service for breakfast this morning for the first time in 6 months after our early morning walk in the Nasho. We were pleasantly surprised there were so few people on the track and dining, which added to the ambiance and serenity of our birding date. The Spring babies are popping out everywhere, especially after recent rain when we hear creeks flowing again and whip birds and whistlers calling. Enjoy your weekend my friend! 🙂

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    1. Greetings Ashley, I think it fair to say Spring has indeed Sprung.
      I think if I sat in a coffee shop, I’d spend the first 30 minutes or so just looking at the cup and wondering what to do. 🙂

      We’ve still over two weeks to go, and the usual uncontrollable selfish mobs are still out and about laughing at all those of us that are trying to get it right.

      Time, will indeed tell.

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