Birders’ Digest – Vol. 4

Welcome to Volume 4 of the Birders’ Digest. A few brief facts before we get to the gallery:

  • The restless flycatcher is also called the “scissors grinder” or “razor grinder” for the very odd, grating call that they have. You can take a listen on this page.
  • Another interesting call is that of the Australian Magpie. We’ve enjoyed listening to these noisy birds sing their morning songs throughout Australia, and they are noted for having one of the most complex songs of any bird. A recording can be found on this page.
  • The wedge-tailed eagle can have an enormous wingspan, approaching 8 feet, and is Australia’s largest raptor.
  • The hoary-headed grebe is also, oddly, known as “Tom Pudding.” The origin for this funny name seems a little murky, but Tom Pudding is also the name for a tub boat (an unpowered cargo boat), though why this is applied to the grebe in particular is anyone’s guess. Several references suggest that they are generally silent birds, perhaps one of the least vocal grebes, and Jenn speculated that this is why they are named for an unpowered/quiet boat.
  • Not specific to the falcon below, but we found out that a primary difference between falcons and other birds of prey is that falcons kill primarily by using their beak, rather than their taloned feet.
  • Can we just take a moment to appreciate how ridiculous-looking the crested pigeon is?


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