My work has been published in The Age, The Herald-Sun, The Australian, The Big Issue, Australian Birdlife, The Bark (USA), Eureka Street, Overland and The Australian Jewish News.
Published January 16th 2012
The Tawny Frogmouth is one of Melbourne's most common birds but it's one of the hardest to find. That's because it spends its days pretending not to be a bird, sitting on exposed branches, posing as a stub in a defence against predators. With a bit of persistance, you can find one in your local park or garden and will be able to watch the changes as time goes by.
They usually sit still but if you disturb one, the bird will stare at you with its big, yellow eyes.
Although nocturnal like owls, Tawny Frogmouths differ in the way they catch their prey. While owls use their powerful talons and claws, frogmouths eat up their prey – insects, worms, snails, small animals, reptiles, frogs and even birds – by catching them in their big, wide beaks.
Frogmouths have beautiful, subtle grey plumage with dark streaks. The best way to find one is to look at the ground below a big tree. If there's plenty of splashy 'whitewash' – bird poo – chances are there's a frogmouth above.
Frogmouths inhabit many Melbourne suburban parks and plenty of gardens, too, and are quite large with an average size of 44 cm. They're great birds to seek out in the evening, when they silently fly back and forth to their nests. In spring and summer, you might even see one or two fluffy, white chicks. They learn to stare early on.
For the past week three Tawny Owls have been guest in the tree outside kitchen window, two are usually close together the other a few branches away....based on size maybe one male two females, not sure...they sit in the tree all day without too much movement can only assume they go out at night.....have taken some picture if interested.....HM