Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Masked Plovers

We have Spur-winged Plovers (also called Masked Plovers) around all the time. Each year, we have a pair lay eggs in our yard, but the last few years, it's been on our roof. One year a chick ended up being swept down the guttering and dying in a rainstorm. They don't have much luck keeping chicks alive even though the parents are fiercely protective and move their chicks regularly.

Anyway, this year they gave a me rough time when I went out to the garbage bin - and I guess it was the day the chicks hatched. So I had stern words with the swooping pests, telling them it was my yard and I wasn't looking for chicks to feed. Gosh, I hoped the neighbours didn't hear me negotiating with birds!!

A couple of days later, the parents brought their brood to visit me. I'm sure that's why they were in the yard making such a racket!

Here's Mum and Dad and the 4 chicks. I think the chicks are cute bits of fluff on stick legs :)

Sadly, I haven't seen them again. I'm hoping some of the chicks have managed to survive. At least none were washed away in rain this year, so that's one less threat.

The local pets, cats and dogs, are the most serious threats but wildlife too. One year I saw the parents chasing a hawk/eagle away from the area above my house, which was quite spectacular. I wasn't sure who'd win that, but the bird of prey left after about 15 mins.

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