The Lyrebird Lady Report


 
 
 
  
 
 
Lyrebird Lady’s report,  January 2018 
 
    
2017 was a very successful year for the Sherbrooke lyrebirds.
A record number of chicks were banded and another five unbanded chicks have been seen since fledging. Of these 31 banded chicks six have been seen feeding with their mothers.
In the Ferntree Gully Unit, the banded female’s nest was empty when we arrived but Alex did see the newly fledged chick.
One feature of this season was that we saw four males with a missing lyrate, which we initially thought was from fox attack, but on reflection decided it was from opposing males fighting for territory. Do we have an overpopulation of males in Sherbrooke forest?
Another interesting event was the banding of the chick in Adele Gully.  This female had lost her top band and is now just Bu/R(LL). We intended to catch her in our new mist net and replace her coloured bands.  After successfully catching and removing this female from the net we discovered she was actually banded Bu/Bu(LL).  Fortunately Alex had a banding list with him, from which we discovered she was Dg/Bu/Bu(LL) and we could be sure of this as she still had her ABBBS (numbered) band.  She had not been seen since 2006.  This female was one of Fragrance’s chicks born off O’Donohue Track, so not from the depths of the forest where we don’t often visit.  After replacing her bands and banding her chick, the team walked out up Adele gully.  Alex said to Ian “see that fibre - I would usually think a nest had been built nearby”. Several paces on there was a low nest against a big Mountain Ash with a two day old chick! The female was Bu/R(LL) who we initially thought had nested in her usual area at the top of Adele Gully.  Returning some three weeks later to replace her bands, we set up the mist net again.  But she was much smarter than us and watched from the tree-tops as we got attacked by the leeches.  So her bands were not replaced in 2017 but her chick is banded.
Big Thank You to all the FOSF members who help to improve the habitat for the Sherbrooke lyrebirds and those members who attend the Dawn Surveys.