Thursday, 6 October 2011

Avian Aggression!

Here in Aus it is Magpie Season.
For those of you who aren't familiar with our magpie - it is nothing like the European one!  It is a large black and white bird with one of the most beautiful series of songs you are ever likely to hear (so good they are called 'carols') and a deadly beak.
They are quite intelligent, can become very friendly when hand fed, but the males can be deadly during the breeding season.  They swoop, from behind.  First thing you know is a loud rush of air & a clacking sound as the bird snaps its beak shut.  That is if you are lucky.  Sometimes they draw blood, or knock you off your bike.
But they don't attack everyone, some just attack cyclists, some just certain individuals, seems they can actually recognise faces!  If a certain bird gets really dangerous, sometimes the local council will relocate it - they are a protected species, as are most native birds.
Actually - they are one of my favourite birds.

But we have another bird that is starting to show a lot of aggression.
Elsa & Fasty Africa

Fasty Africa has become a bit overprotective of Elsa recently, or he thinks the yard is his & doesn't want to share.
First he attacked L7, flying at him from behind, gave him a real fright too.  I told the boys that Fasty was only trying to protect himself & the chooks, they had been squirting them with their water guns after all.
But when he flew at J4 who was carrying Elsa, and scratched his face I was a bit more worried.
I still told the boys that they must leave the chickens alone, that he was trying to protect them.
Now I'm not so sure, he's done it to me, he threatens by taking little darting runs at you and then backing off.  That's OK, looks quite cute really. But when my back was turned - to pick up Elsa & pop her into the coop for the night, he flew at me as well.
Talk about biting the hand that feeds you!

So - he might be looking for a new home soon, if he keeps this sort of behaviour up!

Anyone know someone with a farm that might take him?

On a lighter note.......
I have managed to do some gardening.
Trimmed back all the dead bits of the passionfruit.  The fruit only comes on new growth - and it looked pretty scrappy.
 I cut some of the trimmings onto the garden as mulch.
 The rest I cut up and put in the compost bin.
On top of this I added the weeds that have been fermenting in a sealed Esky for months!  They are still green - but can't germinate & infest my garden anymore.
Chicken & corn anyone?
 Then I cleaned up in and around the chicken tractor, and the lawn, and collected all the old corn cobs (the chickens favourite treat - aside from yoghurt).  This went in on top of the weeds.  Then I watered the lot.  Should really boost the compost.

I also fed most of the plants in the garden for the first time ever!  I put a litre of the weed tea (the water that the weeds had been fermenting in) in the 9litre watering can & topped it up with fresh water from the tanks.  Then watered the garden.
It took a lot of refills!

I've put another lot of weeds in the Esky, and topped it up with water to make more weed tea for next time.
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And finally - here's the start of our first pineapple!  They take 18 months to 2 years to fruit after planting the top of the eaten pineapple.

What's going on in your garden?  Would love to hear from you.


1 comment:

  1. Evil fasty! We just got chickens and they are cheeky little Isa Browns who are refusing to lay in their lay boxes despite all of the lovely straw and fake eggs. Bitches. Excited to see your little Pineapple! :)