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A Grey Fan-tale

January 26, 2015

IMG_1366-001A previous post in November showed a Grey Fantail nest with a single egg. This nest was subsequently abandoned, we suspect due to either storm damage or the constant presence of a Grey Currawong. Not to be deterred, a week later the same pair of Grey Fantails started to build a nest in the corner of our large farm shed, on an old wool-pack frame. Interestingly, the nest did not have the usual ‘tail’ of a Grey Fantail’s nest, probably because it was built to span two parallel bars, rather than being built on and around a single thin branch. The normal nest is described as being like ‘a wine-glass without a base’.
 
The birds were completely unconcerned by humans and vehicles coming and going, which allowed us to set up a tripod and camera just a few metres from the nest, and record over several weeks various stages of breeding, from nest-building, incubating, hatching, feeding, right through to fledging.
A selection of photos is shown in the slideshow below.

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After the fledgelings left the shed we lost track of them for a couple of days and feared for their survival, with strong winds and high temperatures and the everpresent threat of predation by butcherbirds, currawongs, kookaburras and ravens. But late yesterday we were delighted to locate them together in the branches of a nearby eucalypt and watched as they were being regularly fed by the adults. A happy ending to the tale!?IMG_1437IMG_1441

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