Posted by: Bruce | April 3, 2015

Tawny Frogmouth – a bump in the dark.

A little over 2 weeks ago and running a bit late, I aimed the pointy end of my car towards my Mums and nudged the pedal.

Just 3 minutes away and onto the main road, my peripherals caught a movement in the roadside kerbing to my left. A quick glance showed a bird of size, down, and a wing slowly sinking.

Going past at 90 kph wasn’t quick enough to outrun the wondering. Was it the wind from nature or passing cars that caused the wing to flap …….. or is the bird still alive? With a shake of my head, I knew I was going to be a little later still.

After a few turns and doubling back, I found the bird still alive but not looking good. With little knowledge of birds (read hardly any) I figured this one to be a Tawny Frogmouth owl. Turns out I was right except for the owl bit. We’ve had a few at home from time to time quietly sitting in the dark in various spots making their call.

A few quick photos and off to the nearest veterinary clinic at Rathmines. The bird objected to handling only a little so the front seat served as its resting place.

[A single click on any pic will quickly get you large photos to check.]

Within a couple of minutes, a staff member went to place the bird in a cage for observation, but it died while being held. She said the bird had probably been lying injured during the night after being hit by a car when chasing prey shown by headlights.

I was a little sad the bird didn’t make it, but at least it hadn’t gone while lying in the gutter. We got to check each other out a little.

This was a Wednesday morning. The following Friday night as I sat tapping these very keys, my attention was grabbed by a loud, scratching thump on the metal awning over the window next to me. Having had this before, I grabbed a torch and quietly went outside to check.

I expected to see an owl on the awning; occasionally this happens. They hit or land on the awning, stay a short while, maybe shake their head a little and take off or, slide off if they’re slow.

No owl this time, yet the crashing noise of arrival was the same. As I turned to leave, I noticed something out of place. Sitting on the fence, near the front gate, was a Tawny Frogmouth. It turned its head to see me, then flew into the night.

I went inside and given the timing, I started wondering again.

Word for today;    Coincidence – Friday night’s Tawny Frogmouth?

More to come;    same blog time, same blog channel


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