Working in the garden this afternoon I needed to stop what I was doing to take some photographs of a local species of parrot, the Australian Ringneck (also called Mallee Ringneck). I did not have to go looking for the bird in question. It was almost like it came looking for me! It flew right up to me in our plant nursery and sat on a nearby branch, not more than 3 metres away.
Of course, the camera was in the house, so I tried to casually walk into the house hoping that the ringneck would stay there. It didn’t but flew to a tree some 50 metres away. I continued working, all the time watching for the bird to return. I didn’t have to wait long. It settled in a tree near the house. I quietly went inside with the camera, planning to use our sun-room as a hide. We have three bird baths about six metres from a large picture window. We have had hundreds of very enjoyable meals watching the parade of birds coming to drink or bathe. Again, a very “good” waste of time, being very relaxing and enjoyable.
Today’s visitor was taking quite a deal of interest in the water. After taking some good photos through the window I decided to go outside and see how close I could get to the ringneck. I was able to get to about 3 metres away while the bird came down to the bird-bath and proceed to have a very thorough bath. I managed to get several more excellent photos. I then pressed the video button on the camera and filmed the bird washing and preening for about two minutes. I haven’t yet worked out whether I can make this video available on this blog.
Usually we have only two Australian Ringnecks around in the garden. In recent months there have been four, two of them juveniles. They aren’t in our garden constantly but rather roam over a wide range of the local environment. We usually love seeing them near to the house like today. When they decide to raid the orchard and nip the buds off the pear and apple trees we get just a tad annoyed – no – angry. We also get no fruit! Today I observed only one bird; I wonder if the other is nesting somewhere?