There is something intriguing about Bush Stone Curlews. Maybe it’s just their facial composition?
Observing curlews during the day is not very common, certainly not in suburbia. This may be due to the loss of habitat as well.
As their name suggests, Bush Stone Curlews aren’t meant to be seen at daylight. Camouflage is their defence mechanism.
Their feather gown symbols the same colouring and pattern to surrounding grass and scrubs.
When possible danger is detected, curlews don’t move.
Motionless, they look rather cool in their statue-like state.
Not a blink of an eye.
Parents mate for life and raise up to two chicks.
The curlew family prefers to stay in thicker bushland while the chicks are still very small. They are extremely hard to detect then. Once old enough, the open grasslands are always worth a visit.
If the chicks survive the challenging Australian predators, they hang around with their parents until they reproduce.
Older birds, even though their own, could be a danger to the young chicks and will be encouraged to leave.
Some older chicks don’t seem to understand why they are all over sudden shushed off.
But dad is having none of it.
He puts himself in line with his partner and keeps a good eye out on the perpetrator.
While the youngster watches his dad. This is quite an amusing spectacle.
Just as entertaining to watch are curlews at nighttime. If you aren’t too busy to gaze at the stars, whilst listening to crashing waves. In rural or more congested areas, curlews appear at dusk. There is too much traffic during the day. Their distinctive call is heard from a long way away.
Whilst enjoying nature under the stars one evening, visitors dropped by. This actually happened most nights in northern Queensland.
Out of nowhere, this curious bird showed up.
He picked up a few bread crumbs and disappeared again.
This scenario was repeated a few times.
I didn’t know if the same bird returned over and over again, or if the whole family shuffled one by one.
The rest of the family cheered not from afar. This scheme went on for a little while.
If the bird’s activities alone aren’t amusing enough, try to concentrate on its shadow only. It really is a shadow parody.
How is this for a pose?
I captured a few good shadow boxers.
Then, there were two. Together, they were synced in stealth mode.
The black extension to the beak doesn’t make him look any happier.
Two more curlews came from behind and used the seating area as cover. They weren’t too shy either.
Suddenly, I was surrounded by this curlew mob.
They communicate with each other, letting the others know exactly where they are.
But the best part of the show comes at the end.
An opera Ballet.
Either that or an emphatic report to the youngsters.
Military-style. A classic ‘yeah-but’ moment. What an entertaining evening!
I like the idea of these night watchmen prowling the neighbourhood around me. They pick up a fair amount of creepy crawlers, which may have been aiming for your tent.
And it seems that curlews don’t mind us humans either. Just not in large quantities. But who can?
2 thoughts on “Meet the Curlews, Northern Queensland, Australia”
What cute little birds, great story too very informative Mr Attenbroben 😉
Thank you mrs Tricia… even the attenproben is still learning…