Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Young Ones

A call from Trevor Hanlon of New Norfolk on Thursday evening saw me heading off to New Norfolk early on Friday morning. He had found the nest of a Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike in a reserve near his house, which he believed would be suitable for photography. After meeting Trevor and a short walk along the cliffs overlooking the Derwent River, he showed me the nest site. The nest was on an outer eucalypt branch, on a tree growing well below the track, giving us a view of it at eye level. It was at that tantalising distance away from us, not close enough for quality images, but certainly close enough to get a shot of the parents feeding and brooding the three youngsters in the nest. I'm not a great supporter of photography at nests, but these birds were obviously used to the to'ing and fro'ing of people out for a walk along the cliff top track. I must confess that I was under the impression that Cuckoo-shrikes fed almost exclusively on caterpillars, but looking closely at some of the images taken, suggests that they also fed their young on quite a wide variety of insects, including spiders. A little further along the cliffs, I could also see 2 young Dusky Woodswallows, not yet fledged, being fed by their parents, and took the shot at lower left. A little later we were joined by Bill Wakefield and Els Hayward, who had seen and photographed the Cuckoo-shrikes on a previous visit.
Trevor is also starting to take bird shots, and his wife, Barbara, is an accomplished painter. He showed me a shot of a Grey Goshawk (white here in Tasmania) that he took in his garden--very envious! A thank you to both of them for their hospitality, and good luck to Trevor with his bird photography.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Breathtaking photography!
Happy New Year to all at Birds of Tasmania.