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Last Updated: Mon Aug 4 05:36:56 UTC 2014


Australian Suburban Wildlife (Page IV)



Mundane as Australian suburbia might be, we often do get interesting visitors.
This multi-part web page contains a selection of recent suburban wildlife pictures of interest.

Photos and text 1997-2012 Carlo Kopp; Photographs produced using a Fuji S5600 5.1 MP, Fuji S5800 8.0 MP, Fuji HS10 10.3 MP, Nikon D90 12.3 MP and Mamiya 645/1000S.



Rainbow Lorikeet foraging for nectar in a suburban eucalypt tree in Noble Park (Image 2011 Carlo Kopp; Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D ED / D90).

“Native Bird Friendly Backyards
The numerically dominant bird species in most Australian suburbs are imported pests, such as the House Sparrow, European Blackbird, Indian Mynah and Spotted Turtle Dove. These species forage in the suburbs and can be often observed feeding on leftover or unattended pet food - Turtle Doves are especially fond of dry petfood pellets.

Australian native birds common in Melbourne suburbs include Magpies, numerous parrot species, especially Lorikeets, Wattlebirds and in some areas, other honeyeaters, and Kookaburras or Kingfishers. While Magpies and Kookaburras are scavengers with a taste for leftover or unattended pet food, many parrots and honeyeater species are far more selective in their dietary needs. Flowering native trees and shrubs are the primary food supply for these species in the wild, and planting these in suburban backyards creates a much friendlier habitat.

Native species which are often planted to support native birds include various Banksias, Eucalypts and Grevilleas. Where domestic or feral cats are present, it is a good practice to  remove cover and trim away lower branches - a large cat breed like a Maine Coon can jump to a height in excess of 6 feet when hunting birds - I observed a large Raven come within 250 milliseconds of becoming catfood in exactly this manner.



Red Wattlebird prior to feeding on a Banksia Integrifolia. This loud native honeyeater is a frequent visitor in Melbourne suburbs, but mostly prefers native blossoms (Nikkor 70-300mm D-ED/ D90 08/2011).



Red Wattlebird feeding on a Banksia Integrifolia (Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D-ED/ D90 03/2012).







Rainbow Lorikeet feeding on a Banksia Integrifolia (Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D-ED/ D90 03/2012).







The Banksia integrifolia or Coast Banksia is indigenous across the southern Australian coastline and thrives even in very poor soils with modest or poor water supply, making it well suited for Melbourne suburbs. The species is available at low cost, grows quickly and its distinctive blossoms are well liked by honeyeaters (03/2010).


Immature Banksia integrifolia blossom (Sekor C 105-210mm f/4.5 ULD Macro #2 / D90).



Mature Banksia integrifolia blossom (Above, below Fuji S5800).





Immature Banksia integrifolia blossom (Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G DX / D90).



Banksia integrifolia seed pod (Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D / D90).



Above, below: a Brush Wattlebird feeding on blossoms of the Banksia integrifolia (03/2012).







The Banksia spinulosa shrub produces large nectar rich blossoms. This image shows immature spikes next to the previous season's flower. The species is indigenous to Eastern Australian coastal regions (03/2010).







Mature Banksia spinulosa blossom (M645/1000S using Sekor C 105 - 210 mm ULD zoom, 3-S macro extender and Fuji Pro 800Z).



Mature Banksia spinulosa blossom, red form (Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G DX ISO 400 1/60 / D90).



Mature Banksia spinulosa blossom, red form (Tokina 20-35mm f/2.8 ATX Pro / D90).



Brush Wattlebird feeding on blossoms of the Grevillea banksii (03/2012).







The attractive native Grevillea banksii bush is popular in Australian gardens, and is a favourite with numerous native bird species. This example has fed Brush Wattlebirds, Red Wattlebirds, and a transient  New Holland Honeyeater (Tokina 20-35mm f/2.8 ATX Pro / D90).



Grevillea banksii blossom (Sekor C 105 - 210 mm ULD zoom, M645/1000S using 3-S macro extender and Fuji Pro 800Z).



Grevillea banksii blossom (Sekor C 105 - 210 mm ULD zoom, using 2-S macro extender / D90).



Grevillea banksii blossom (Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G DX / D90).



Rainbow Lorikeet foraging for nectar in a suburban eucalypt tree in Noble Park (Image 2011 Carlo Kopp; Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D ED / D90).



The Eucalyptus caesia or Silver Princess is a small gum tree indigenous to the wheatbelt of my home state, Western Australia. It is well suited to suburbia as it is small but grows quickly, but is like many Eucalypts maintenance intensive as its characteristic drooping branches fracture easily.  This example is the red flowering subspecies, about five years of age - it has fed Brush Wattlebirds, Red Wattlebirds, and Rainbow Lorikeets (03/2010).








Eucalyptus caesia blossoms (Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D / D90).





Eucalyptus caesia blossoms (D90 / 35mm f/1.8G DX ISO 800 1/800).



Eucalypt blossoms, pink, above budding, below fully developed (D90 / 35mm f/1.8G DX ISO 220 1/60).





European fruit trees often provide seasonal sustenance for native nectar feeding birds. Depicted a pair of Rainbow Lorikeets foraging in Noble Park (09/2007).





A European Honey Bee feeding on a plum blossom - note the deployed proboscis as it alights. These are resized crops from a sequence of over 60 frames captured using Continous Mode exposure in the D90 - most were successful. Distance is ~5 feet @ 300 mm and f/8.0, i.e. this is not macro photography (Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D-ED/ D90 08/2011).









European Honey Bees feeding on a Coastal Banksia, and a lemon tree blossom (Nikkor 50mm f/1.8D / D90 06/2012).





Ornamental plum tree blossoms in Noble Park area (30/08/2007).







A Brush Wattlebird perched on a folded dipole VHF antenna. This species is unusually loud for its size (03/2010).



Other Interesting Wildlife Sites

http://www.wildlife-photo.org/







Computer Science, Engineering and Systems Publications List Information Warfare, Hypergames, Systems Research Ad Hoc Networking Research Computer Architecture Research - Password Capability Systems Industry Publications Industry Hardware Design Projects Interesting Papers Photo Galleries Biography Email Carlo GOTO Home
Artwork and text 1994 - 2010 Carlo Kopp; All rights reserved.
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