Tawny Frogmouths in my Back Yard

November 28, 2013 at 12:21 pm | Posted in Australia, Gardens, Nature | 5 Comments
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The tawny frogmouths are back!

Mum and Dad and two little ones turned up in one of the trees in our back yard the other day. My husband has been taking photos of them.

Two adult tawnies, lower left; two baby tawnies, higher & farther right.

Two adult tawnies, lower left; two baby tawnies, higher & farther right.

There is something special about these birds. The tawny frogmouth (Podargus strigoides) is actually not an owl, though it is usually mistaken for one.
IMG_0251
The forward facing eyes are very owl-like, and this is one of the reasons owls are a favourite with many people. We do tend to anthropomorphise animals at times.
The babies too are very appealing with their large eyes, fluffy feathers and inquisitive nature.

The young of most mammals - and birds, when they get their feathers - are very appealing.

The young of most mammals – and birds, when they get their feathers – are very appealing.

Tawnies have a defence mechanism against any predators that might relish one – they elongate their body and imitate a broken-off branch. That, and their natural camouflage, makes them almost invisible in their favourite trees.

Tawnies, making like branch stubs.

Tawnies, making like branch stubs.

I love having the tawnies around, especially in breeding season. They add to the wildlife, especially birds, that flourish in our back yard.

 

(c) Linda Visman

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5 Comments »

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  1. Linda, this is absolutely fascinating. Never heard of them. They are magnificent. I can see how they can be mistaken for owls. I certainly would have mistaken them for some small species of Owl. I love the bit on how they protect themselves. So enlightening – thank you.

  2. Beautiful. I didn’t know that they weren’t owls though!

  3. Thanks, Paul. It’s only a few years ago that I learned that they aren’t owls, but frogmouths.

  4. I’ve yet to see a Tawny Frogmouth, though experts say that they’re around…


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