There is definitely a change out there in the bird-o-sphere. The Sparrows and Blackbirds have been seen arguing over possible mates as the breeding season approaches even though for the humans it feels very much like the depths of winter, with spring a long way away.
In the past week the Tuis have changed their behaviours noticeably too. Groups have been visiting the Magnolia tree with all manner of chasing and flapping and branch hopping. There has been an increase in singing from the tops of trees as witnessed here.
Then yesterday after hearing several long courting and wooing choruses I spotted these two, all puffed up and looking like an old married couple. My Mum would use the term “Darby and Joan” to describe this scene.
Tui do not like to share space, especially as the males are establishing their territories in which to breed right now. So to see two birds sitting side by side so amicably was a surprise.
The cosy scene was quickly shattered as a rival bird flew into the tree.
This caused the female companion to flee and the male to look above to see where trouble lay.
Within seconds the tree was empty of Tui again.
Did you spot the sparrow photo-bombing in the last photo?
I spotted Darby and Joan together in the garden this morning again but they flew away too quickly for me to photograph.
I’m enjoying the photos of your bird-o-sphere. Hadn’t realised that female tui don’t have the white bib.
Thanks Ruth. It is very busy in the bird-o-sphere suddenly which gives rise to hope amidst this bitter weather.
Female adult Tui do have white bibs but my hurried photo did not capture “Joan’s” one.
The juvenile Tui take a good few weeks for their bibs to form.
Darby and Joan do look so pleased with themselves. And, yes, I do see the photo-bombing sparrow!
Are they not a picture of contentment? The sparrows don’t seem to get chased from the tree by the Tui…..photo bombing seems quite the thing to do these days:-)
these are great shots of your tuis…
Thanks. I have a new camera with improved zoom so I am having great fun playing. Camera shake is an issue so I will have a monopod on my Xmas list:-) Aren’t they a picture of contentment sitting so happily side by side in their puffy feathers?
They’re beautiful. Excuse my ignorance – but what is a monopod…
I only learnt about a monopod when I got my new camera. It is a stick that you attach the camera to and it reduces camera shake. The one legged version of a tripod – very portable. I’ve since seen athletes at the opening of the Commonwealth Games using them – 2.5 weeks ago I had to ask your very question. Lots of Tui action but they are edgy and flighty so had to photograph.