As I headed down from Queen's Park towards Princes Bridge, I spotted a feathered tail hanging from a branch arching over the path. At first glance the underside was black and white striped. Upon closer inspection I discovered it was black tail feathers of varying lengths, each with a white tip giving the banded appearance. What was interesting about this was that the tail was attached to a Pied Currawong.
Now, to this point in time all the Pied Currawongs I'd seen had the typical white undertail and then a thin band of white at the tip - like this guy photographed in my backyard in April, 2010.
|Pied Currawong April, 2010|
|Pied Currawong 1|
|Pied Currawong 2|
Now, several hours and many webpages later, I am still none-the-wiser as to what I am seeing here. My question for those who read my blog and know more about birds than I do (and suspect there are a few) is this: are these juvenile birds whose tail feathers have yet to grow out properly or am I looking at two of the six different subspecies of Pied Currawong?
Certainly one of the two birds I saw today had paler grey feathers on its chest and could have been a young one. Neither looked anything like the rather large Grey Currawong I saw a couple of months back near Baum's Weir which was the subject of an earlier post nor were there any calls from these birds - although I did hear others calling further upstream on the opposite side of the river.
here. When I first read this post, I was sure I had the answer to that one, but after looking back over my own currawong posts, it seems I do not, so I too would be interested to know if there is such a noun.