Blue Monday #1

 Thanks to Sally for hosting Blue Monday!

I’d like to share with you something that I think is better than fairies at the bottom of the garden – bowerbirds at the bottom of my garden (well just over the fence)! I live in the Blue Mountains of NSW, Australia, and our local bowerbird is called the satin bowerbird. Males are deep iridescent blue with lavender eyes. Females are olive with lavender eyes. Young males are apparently the same colour as females – they get their new plumage when they become mature. I was lucky enough to see one in the transition phase once.

They build a bower on the ground out of small twigs, and decorate it with blue objects. If you own blue plastic pegs, chances are they won’t last long in the peg basket. They also like pale gold, such as straw or pale yellow flowers. The bower is for courtship, not nesting.

 

This one built a bower under a big stand of feral lantana in the bush behind my place. The bower is built with the opening facing north / south, and usually in dappled shade where the sun can dance on the leaves.

Here’s some of his collection. Bowerbirds make the most wonderful sounds – whirring and clicking noises like a rickety old sewing machine. For the past 25 years I have had a bowerbirds bower on or near my property. It was a lovely treat to show my kids when they were growing up.

Addendum: D’oh! I named my blog and my website after these birds, as they surround themselves with things they’ve collected – and so do I!!

Happy Monday everyone!

Published in: on September 29, 2008 at 1:00 am  Comments (16)  
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