On Friday morning I took a walk into Badangi Reserve in Waverton. The walk started well (photographically speaking!) when I spotted an Eastern Water Dragon (Intellagama lesueurii lesueurii) sunbaking just outside the reserve:
However, it was a long while before I saw much more. As I entered the reserve, I heard two Eastern Whipbirds calling from different parts of the reserve. Whipbirds are notoriously wary skulkers and seldom seen, but one of the callers was near where I‘d seen a pair a couple of years ago. I took a chance and headed there, and waited. And waited. The male Whipbird kept calling for quite a while—and often receiving its mate’s responses— and even moved to another patch of bush, but I never saw anything.
After a while, I got bored. Remembering our old border collie who would sometimes watch ants when there were no walks in the offing, I briefly pointed the camera at a bull ant as I waited:
A couple of young King Parrots flew overhead several times, intermittently playing chasings around the angophora trees. This one paused briefly on a tree before a proprietary lorikeet walked over to enquire its business.
The king parrot flew off before any challenge ensued.
Eventually I gave up on the whipbirds and slowly headed back. At one point some wrens were making their usual zitting noises in shrubbery near the path. Again I waited to see if they would emerge into the open. However they remained as well hidden as the whipbirds, so I passed the time by photographing these flowers with two small beetles in one of them:
Eventually I gave up on the birds completely and headed out of the reserve. Then, about 30 metres before the exit, I saw a flash of colour in the bushes. It was one of the young king parrots that had been chasing around the treetops earlier. Now it was feeding much lower down, but mostly obscured by an intervening thicket:
I walked quietly up the path hoping to get a clearer view from the other side of the thicket. I did, but also discovered a second and closer bird in the thicket. After surveying me, this second one flew even nearer, onto a fruit-bearing branch. It began nibbling on the small fruits while keeping a careful eye on me:
As it turned its head I could see a slight mark on the right side. From the incipient red on its chest I guessed it to be a young male, although the usual light green patch on the wing wasn’t showing:
After a while, the original bird also decided to come closer:
Then a third bird decided to get in on the act:
It flew closer too!
I began to feel a bit like a bird paparazzo, with the Kardashians of the king parrot tribe all queuing to be photographed at the latest trendy restaurant. Spoiled for choice, I took many more images as the trio worked their way through their abundant fruit smorgasbord:
And through the occasional flower:
My Kardashian parrots were still feasting when I left, but I felt they deserved their feast - they had quite made my day!
King Parrots are quiet and peaceful birds, at least by parrot standards, and watching them was a wonderfully relaxing experience. Because they were all young, none of them had the full red regalia of an adult male, but they were beautiful birds in their own right.
My previous post about King Parrots included adult males with their magnificent red colouring.