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Saturday, January 19, 2008

The Noisy Miners

The noisy miners live up to their name
As the noisiest family in their neighbourhood
You always hear them calling in small groups
On trees along the border of the wood.

With yellow bill and yellow around the eyes
And overall dark mottled to light gray
And band of dark across the head and face
I see them often though not every day.

I've seen them in flocks of up to thirty even more
And together they defend their territory
Unlike some birds of man they don't stay shy
And they are easy to observe and see.

They build cup shaped nest of grass and lined with hair
Wedged in the fork of higher branch of tree
And three to five cream spotted eggs the female lay
And the young are raised by all the family.

At nesting time they defend their territory
Against small predators and birds of prey
They mob the nest robbers kookaburra and currawong
And small hawks and butcherbirds they chase away.

The noisiest family in their neighbourhood
Are the noisy miners birds I often see
They live in flocks of up to thirty even more
And they vigorously defend their territory.
Francis Duggan
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