Greetings from Western Australia

By Alison James, Photographer Chris James

WA ring necked parrot

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Magpies and Old Age

Vicky magpie - old and aloneThere are big changes in our backyard. Vicky our Mummy magpie for 11 years, suddenly gave up her nest to a newcomer. 

Vicky, her mate Bertie and their two girls hung out with this newcomer for a few days. We thought the newcomer was a visiting guest. Then Vicky stopped coming for a feed with Bertie and her girls Shelly & Nelly (BSN).  BSN would come by themselves and Vicky would come just once a day, fairly late and leave quickly after eating only a small bit.

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Jan's Magpies Help Nom Butcherbird

 Nom - Juvi pied bitcherbird

 Nom is a one year old pied-butcherbird and a much loved friend of readess Jan & Victoria Anderson (remember the gorgeous picture of Pingu magpie with Vic). 

Nom and older brother Om were regular visitors to Jan's home along with their siblings and parents (see picture below).

Bird territorial rules are very complex. When another pied-butcherbird family moved into the area they felt Jan's yard fell within their boundaries and began to chase Om, Nom and family away much to Jan and Vic's dismay.

Around the same time Nom began to show symptoms of conjunctivitis. (Regular readers may remember our pied-butcherbird Butchie getting this terrible condition which often inflicts pied-butcherbirds and which can end in a cruel death for the bird.)  

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