Yes, we do live in bushland, but we're only 7km from the centre of Brissie. I hope our birdies never ever find out how close the hustle and bustle really is.

           channel bill 1    channel bill and crow

This sweetheart leads the chorus well before dawn - he (or probably she) is a channel-billed cuckoo that migrates from New Guinea for breeding purposes. He wakes us with the most god-awful racket - which is intended to distract the poor Mumma Crow, or Maggie, or Currawong,so she can slip an egg into their nest. Charming !! Then the baby cuckoo grows faster than the host littlies, demands all the food, and starves the other bubs. Not at all nice. (thank you, Ellen Jenkins, for these lovely pics) The second shot has a crow watching the cuckoo very suspiciously.

             koel 1    koel 2

Common Koel - dad on the left, mum the mottled one on the right.

This guy I like a lot better, but he also is a cuckoo, and migrates from south-east Asia for breeding, but he does it all with more panache. Then again, they do lay their eggs in some poor oriole or magpie lark nest, and the new chick does kick out any other bubs so it can hog all the food - so I guess he's not a nice citizen either.

We call him the rainbird, and his cry sounds quite plaintive "ko-el" - and it is incessant. The koel, once he gets going, calls for hours and with such gusto, I'd like to help him somehow.


The kookaburras that live in our trees are quite glorious in the mornings - love their laughter, so infectious but at the same time, quite earnest about their chorus - quite wonderful. Have a listen -


My next noisy one is the crow -

            crow 3

Oops I should have said - the gang of crows that have their early morning club meeting in our trees. And after that, a noisy gossip session that requires much to and fro-ing, and argy bargy between the gang members. Finally, and with great gusto, they plan what they will do for the day - then off on their merry way and are not seen the rest of the day. (but they are heard !!) 

                    maggie 2

The Australian magpie - seems so common to us, but take the time to listen to his morning call - truly delightful. And once he starts, he just keeps chortling and singing so happily. Luv his early morning warble - the guy I captured in this pic of our bushland, was chortling his heart out in the sun. If I could capture that sound I would call it "Ode to the Sun"

                    oriole 4     oriole 5

Meet the olive-backed oriole, often heard long before you see him with his rich olive green back and red eye. He's supposed to be an excellent mimic and ventriloquist. However in the mornings it is his distinctive rolling call - "orry orry-ole" that makes him easy to identify. Nonstop calling, he does, but it's such a peaceful sound I do enjoy him. Actually quite similar to the peaceful dove.

 golden whistler 2   golden female 1

The gorgeous boy above is Mr Golden Whistler, while his mate Mrs Golden Whistler, is much more subdued - and isn't it good girls, to know that life in the bush requires much effort from the boys - if they're going to attract a female, it would help to be gorgeous.

Bonus - he has a strong, musical and varied call to go with his plumage - the one we hear in the mornings is usually - "we we we tu whit" - with the last whit almost like a whip crack. He is undoubtedly one of our vituoso songbirds.

 grey shrike thrush

OK OK the Grey Shrike Thrush is a bit drab, but again, he has an amazing repertoire with a wide variety of songs. Liquid melodius trills, clear whistles,  "cho cho weeee" - many sounds we associate with the Australian bush and love

           Think I'd better stop there. Many many more birdies contribute to our morning callers, such as butcher birds, all the honey eaters, even the noisy miners (yuk), currawongs, drongos, crested pigeons,  I could probably ramble on all day !!

 Then again, I'll most likely do them later as a full posting - there's certainly enough variety. We used to have wrens and silver eyes and thornbills every morn, but the lantana has been cleared out of the bushland, so they don't have shrubs to hide in any more. I'm really hoping the native bushes we've planted on our steep hill might bring them back.


         No wonder we come home from our trips OS and fall in love with our bush sounds again - we are so blessed at the richness and complexity of the various sounds that make up our morning chorus.






 However, I do have to tell you about one more birdie that comes to the bird feeder right outside our bedroom door - he is SO beautiful.

              pale headed  pale headed 3

10 years he's been visiting, and eating up a storm. We go away 2 mths at a time - only takes him a day to return. Often solitary, but in spring he's a twosome and very happy. He's like a caricature of a perfect bird, with his yellow and blues on top, then flashes of turquoise and red as he flies away - he is SO gorgeous. Still wild though - flies away if we go near the door - which is maybe why he has lasted so well.

We are so blessed with our birdies, want to tell me about yours ??

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