Archive for November, 2010

Topknot Pigeon, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

Topknot Pigeon, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

I find that zoos and wildlife parks are excellent places to hone one’s photography skills, especially those with walk through aviaries. On a few occasions, however, one can get the conditions just right and a good shot can be obtained even when shooting through the wire surrounding the aviary.

The above shot of Topknot Pigeon was taken through the wire of an aviary at Taronga Park Zoo. You can see the wire behind the bird, but the wire in front seems to have completely disappeared.

Topknot Pigeons are present along coastal eastern Australia, from Cape York peninsula down through to south eastern NSW. it can also sometimes occur in far eastern Victoria, near Mallacoota.

I have only ever seen this species once in the wild, nearly 30 years ago in Gibraltar Range National Park between Grafton and Glen Innes in north eastern NSW.

Banded Lapwing, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

Banded Lapwing, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

Many Australians are familiar with the Masked Lapwing (Spur-winged Plover) as they are very common around parks, ovals, school grounds and farmlands. I get many comments on these birds on my birding site when they are breeding; the birds can be very noisy and very aggressive when protecting the nest or their young.

Many people however, would not be aware of their quieter cousins, the Banded Lapwing shown in the photos on this post. This species is found throughout much of Australia in suitable habitat, except for the far north. Their preferred habitat is bare or ploughed paddocks, areas with short grass, near swamps and plains.

The photo above of a captive bird was taken recently in the Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney.

Further reading:

Banded Lapwings, Murray-Sunset National Park

Striped Honeyeater, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

Striped Honeyeater, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

Australia has many dozens of different honeyeaters. In my home town of Murray Bridge we have at least 12 different species, most of them resident year round.

The Striped Honeyeater is one of them, but it is a breeding migrant in this area, arriving in the spring and leaving late summer. Only on one occasion over the last 26 years has it actually nested in our garden.

The bird shown in the photo above was in an aviary at Taronga Park Zoo where we visited on a holiday earlier this year.

Rainbow Lorikeets welcome us to Taronga Park Zoo

Rainbow Lorikeets, Taronga Park Zoo, Sydney

When we went to Sydney earlier this year we went with our son and grandson to Taronga Park Zoo. We had just entered the gates when we were welcomed by these two Rainbow Lorikeets feeding on some scraps of bread left on the walkway by someone.

I guess whoever left them the bread didn’t realise that bread is absolutely no good for feeding birds. Not only has it no nutritional value whatsoever for a bird, it can also swell up in the intestines causing blockages.