Little Corellas on my street

1 May 2019

At this time of year, Little Corellas form large flocks (of maybe a thousand birds) and roam Melbourne for seeds. Liquidambar trees are among their favourite targets.

We have a mature Liquidambar up the side of our place in East Kew. So of course, we got targeted. I do love Corellas. Their yelping, slightly whingy call is quite unique (unless you're comparing it with Long-billed Corellas, of course).

All we could hear for a while was the birds calling and the banging of the seed balls hitting our neighbour's roof. I grabbed my ScopePix, attached it to my Nikon Monarch 8.5x56 binoculars and went out for a look.

The saxon ScopePix is really useful for this kind of thing. It takes a bit of practice to get it square on, and it depends on your binocular's eye relief how far you set it back from the eyepiece, but once it's aligned it's brilliant.

The way I use it is I attach it to the right barrel of my bins and use my right eye to look through the left barrel. You set the phone to record video, and away you go. What you see, the phone sees. You also look like a bit of a goose.

There were birds everywhere - the flock spread as far as several houses up the street. Most of them you can't really see in the movie, but there must have been a couple of hundred at least.

Weirdly enough, inamongst all of the flock was a single, slightly lost looking Sulphur-crested Cockatoo. I didn't get it on video but I think its call came through at one point.

Standing under the tree, the seed balls were raining down on me. They hit me a couple of times, but I edited that out because it made the camera jump around. Our neighbour told me afterwards that she was a little nervous to come outside. I'm not sure whether it was due to the raining seed balls or the somewhat Hitchcockian nature of what was going on.

I was also tempted to slyly include a call or two from a Little Corella recorded previously in South Australia but I think that might have been rude...