ODIMBAR (One Day I Might Be A Raptor) was not here on 5 April 2017, but had set up his court by 14 April. From behaviour we have considered that he is newly adult-fledged, but he could be an older bird who has shifted his court. It is autumn and the courting that dominates reporting on bowerbirds is not due till spring.

As we begin this blog on 16 April 2017, we already have our hearts in our mouths, concerned that this new family member outside our suburban bedroom window will survive the competition and that his court may thrive. His day is busy: hunting, building, learning, asserting, defending, charming, singing, raucous caucusing and dancing.

And the evidence before us, of daily life, is much more complex than what one usually reads or views on Youtube, of isolated males building bowers in spring to try to entice picky females with whom their relations are fleeting. It's not like that at all here.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

bower demolished and rebuilt...

... or did I imagine it?

On Monday 24, after walking the dog, I decided I should get pictures from the field camera, which I'd forgotten to do at night. So I brought the SD card in at about 9am and was delayed putting the back till about 10... when I discovered that in the intervening period the bower had been smashed. This happens, male birds are rivals, they steal from each other, they fight over territory. But it was a great shock to discover. How was the bird... did this blog thus end??

I put the card in the camera and moved it to a new position.. which [sigh] was plainly not a good position because it failed to record, sun in its eye, the beginning of reconstruction of the bower.

SO, the movie for the day begins with a photo of the bower as was before destroyed, next as it was by lunchtime when the movement-sensing camera succeeded in recording. I did not know that when I moved the camera to a better location a little later. There follow 13 minutes of clips after 4pm, with more building and interaction with other birds. At the moment the camera is set to record 60 seconds with 20 second gaps before sensing for movement again. I will review this, consider longer periods of recording in a day or so.

I have placed some more links under 'research' in the right column, below the map. I am still in search of evidence that others have studied the complex relations between young and old and between genders, determinate or otherwise, over time, not just at sexy springtime... I said "determnate or otherwise" because if we know that in Homo sapiens there are more intersex people than redheads, perhaps we should leave that door open in seeking to understand bird behaviour too. And we are seeing complex interactions.


Here first is a little infrared movie recorded just after dark. This is the creature who drives Ralph the Spoodle insane, yelling and yelling when it goes near the hens. Something must be done!

and this is the main movie of the day...

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