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Bush Stone-curlew (pair)

Burhinus grallarius

Description:

Bush Stone-curlew's are large, slim, mainly nocturnal, ground-dwelling birds, and are endemic to Australia. Although they look rather like a wading bird and are related to the oystercatchers, avocets and plovers, they are a terrestrial predator filling an ecological niche similar to that of the roadrunners of North America. They specialise in hunting small grassland animals: frogs, spiders, insects, molluscs, crustaceans, snakes, lizards and small mammals are all taken. I reckon they're awesome birds, and I adore those beautiful big eyes. This species is classifies as endangered in NSW and Victoria. They range throughout most of Australia and were formerly quite common, but have declined in numbers through habitat loss and predation by foxes and feral cats. Other states are reasonably secure.

Habitat:

This species has a broad habitat preference, and can be found in open forest, eucalyptus woodland, rainforest edges, grassy plains, arid scrubland and along inland watercourses. They frequent open areas like golf courses and parkland as well. This spotting was at a large inner-city hopsital carpark, although there is a small park adjacent to the car park. I got the shock of my life when I got out of the car and these two birds were staring me down. They weren't frightened of me but did keep enough space between us to feel comfortable.

Notes:

Hear their amazing call. This is what I hear at night, and it's unnerving to anyone who doesn't know what it is - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZWHUU41...

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Neil Ross
Spotted by
Neil Ross

Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Spotted on Nov 15, 2017
Submitted on Feb 3, 2018

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