Early morning birding walk

I went for an early morning walk today. It was an enforced walk: I had just taken our car to local garage for a regular service and check up. I could have asked my wife to pick me up in her car but she was still in bed. Despite the early hour, the air was already quite warm and I could understand why most of South Australia has had fire bans issued for the day. Our first burst of hot weather for the summer promises to be a good one. Time to hunker down and do some indoor things. Like reading. Or writing this post.

On my morning walk I was aware of the vast amount of activity on the part of the birds. My walk took exactly 28 minutes to complete and I saw or heard most of the locally resident species along the way, including large numbers of Galahs. The highlight of the walk was two Dusky Woodswallows perched on the fence of a nearby neighbour’s property.

While this species is a regular visitor to our little piece of Australia (5 acres), I can’t call it a resident species. This “pair” of birds – I use the term cautiously – have been sighted on a few occasions in the same spot over the last few weeks. I suspect that they are actually a pair and have a nest nearby. Quite a few years ago a pair nested in one of the trees in our front scrub near our house.

Of course, I didn’t have my camera with me this morning, and my phone camera doesn’t have a zoom sufficient for the job, so I have posted below a photo taken some time ago. This was taken in our scrub near the house.

Dusky Woodswallow

Dusky Woodswallow

Pardalote up close

Spotted Pardalotes

My regular daily walk takes me along a road bordering our five acre property and then towards a nearby railway line which runs from Adelaide to Melbourne.  This road has a reasonable collection of remnant mallee vegetation between the road and the fences along nearby farms and other properties.

On a recent afternoon walk my attention was caught by the movement of a small bird in the roadside vegetation. I stopped to have a closer look, edging to within a metre. A Spotted Pardalote was feeding at a height of about a metre. Totally ignoring me it continued to feed while I watched up close. I admire these beautiful little birds whenever I see them, and their cheerful chirping in our garden is always welcome.

I usually don’t take my camera on these walks, so I’ve included a photo I took some time ago of two of this species visiting one of our birdbaths in our garden.

Perhaps I should get into the habit of taking my camera on my walks because I’ve missed some excellent photo opportunities in recent weeks.