Signs of Life

Even at the start of winter there are signs that spring will be along sometime, sooner or later. TB took this photo of swans and cygnets two weeks ago. Given their size it seems that the cygnets are already several weeks old.

Aww, how cute is that! Swans and cygnets on Lake Tuggeranong, June 2015
Aww, how cute is that! Swans and cygnets on Lake Tuggeranong, June 2015

 For the second time in as many months we have had Satin Bowerbirds (Ptilonorhynchus violaceus) in our garden. This time it wasn’t just one bird, but three!

A Satin Bowerbird in our Snowgum
A Satin Bowerbird in our Snowgum

According to the Canberra Ornithologist’s website, Satin Bowerbirds are increasingly visiting Canberra’s southern and western suburbs. This occurs most frequently in the winter months.

Note the violet coloured eye which is a feature of this species
Note the violet coloured eye which is a feature of this species

It’s hard to tell whether these are females or juvenile male birds. The latter only develop their shiny ‘satin’ feathers as they mature. According to Birds in Backyards the adult male plumage doesn’t develop until the birds are 5 years old and they don’t come into their full plumage until they are 7 years old. Which begs the question just how long do these birds live?

Here’s one last shot, not a perfect photo, but I thought the pose was pretty interesting.

Don't try this at home!
Don’t try this at home!

 

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