Bush stone-curlews

I was astonished to see these bush stone-curlews (also know as bush thick-knees, Burhinus grallarius) in a park in an urban area about an hour and a half from home. They seemed quite used to people – even a car driving over the grass near them (!) did not cause them to fly off.

Bush stone-curlews resting in a park

These birds feed at night on insects, snails, small lizards, seeds and the occasional small mammal.

According to Birdsinbackyards:

Bush stone-curlews have a remarkable courtship dance. Individuals stand with their wings outstretched, their tail upright and their neck stretched slightly forward. The birds will stamp their feet up and down, like a soldier marking time. This courtship ritual is repeated for an hour or more at a time and is accompanied by loud and constant calling. Eggs are laid in a shallow scrape in the ground and both adults share the incubation and care for the young.

The driver of the car had obviously not seen – or chose to ignore – the prominent signs in the park.

I’ve seen beach stone-curlews (Esacus neglectus) in far north Queensland, but this was a first for me. Tick!

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2 Responses to Bush stone-curlews

  1. Roselene says:

    Until a few years ago I’d only seen curlews in captivity.
    Quite amazing looking birds.

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