Although there’s still a month of summer to go there was a hint of autumn in the air the other morning. It was cool, and three of the birds we associate with autumn were in the garden, a pair of King Parrots were investigating the possibility of seed, and in the background a Grey Butcherbird and a Pied Currawong were giving their distinctive calls. We’ve had some interesting birds call in, I’ve mentioned previously the White-throated Treecreeper, and the White-plumed and New Holland Honeyeaters, four of the latter came to the water today, and this morning I saw a Collared Sparrowhawk flying through. The bone dry brown paddock has been attracting Straw-necked Ibis and White-faced Herons, small grasshoppers are probably the menu items. A small flock of Galahs has been constant for a few days and the old Crimson Rosella plus the odd Sulphur-crested Cockatoo pop in every day to see if there are any sunflower seeds on the stump. A big surprise was a beautiful male Mistletoebird sighted briefly in a correa shrub, it was gone by the time I got the camera. A Spotted Pardalote was another surprise at the water and we had a fleeting visit from a nicely coloured Scarlet Honeyeater. With the dry weather there is not much in the way of nectar in the garden to keep a bird like that around.The Yellow-rumped Thornbills work through regularly, but what has delighted us most is a flock of five blue wrens, to give them their old familiar name, that have been resident for about six weeks, the longest time ever. They are all brown birds, no mature male, which probably explains why they have come to regard us as just part of the scenery and hop around just a few feet away. I must admit to giving them a little treat from time to time, they appreciate some small shreds of tasty cheese. My late mother loved birds too, and while bream fishing on the river used to feed wrens with tiny pieces of her sandworm bait. The short video clip shows one of the wrens feeding a youngster as big as herself.

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