World Migratory Bird Day is 11 May 2019 and this year’s focus is prevention of the injuries and mortality caused by plastic pollution. That reminds us of the world’s oceans and the shocking loss of sea birds from ingesting floating plastic litter. Locally we collect bags of plastic waste in each year at Banyule Flats.
A beautifully coloured visitor to Banyule is the Sacred Kingfisher which breeds in Australia and then migrates northwards, some reaching New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Indonesia. You are most likely to see or hear it when it returns here in Spring to breed from September to December. Favoured habitats are open forests and woodlands, but also beside rivers or wetlands including Banyule Swamp and Bolin Bolin Billabong.
The birds nest in hollow tree branches or burrows which they dig into riverbanks. They perch on low branches looking down for prey and then dart to collect insects, small reptiles, fish, nestlings or rodents.