Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Grey fantail nest building, Phillip Island birds

Grey fantail, Phillip Island
Such a song - often heard but I'd not watched one singing close up before. The bill really opened wide for the highest silvery notes at the end of each song phrase
"I think I might build something of greatness ..."
Foundations, 50cm from a previous nest (last year's?) about a metre off the ground
Poor view of the arrival of another load of some fibrous plant matter.
What's good on TV? Spider webs of course
Sticky stuff though!

This nest building requires some agility! There was much rapid fussing around the edges.

The next shots were taken one day later and the nest has taken greater shape. It gets tested for size ...

The all important interior design cannot be ignored
One week later ... Voila! What a fine creation. Pizzey describes the fantail nest as a "beautiful small grey cup, tailed like wineglass without a base".

This one's wineglass stem is a little off!
A peak inside reveals a single egg which is not shown well in this iphone shot
I wonder if I'll find a second egg soon.

Sharing with Wild Bird Wednesday

Bird on!


  1. I think the nest is brilliant and it was great that you saw the egg. Hope she lays more and I am sure you will be watching the progress of the incubation show us later.

  2. Awww..she is so cute in the last shot..... probably tired out from building it ...but I hope she is happy with her effort.... it looks great!

  3. Great series on this pretty bird. I enjoyed the post and the photos.

  4. Absolutely wonderful series of photos! How fortunate you were to capture this bird making its nest. And singing...Wonderful photos!

  5. Wonderful photos! I love the last shot.

  6. A really fantastic tale in images of what we all take for granted..... lovely post and story.

  7. These are a wonderful sequence of photos of this happy little bird - although we often see them, I have never spotted one in a nest. I loved seeing these photos - hope the next generation of fantails go well.

  8. The nests of these birds really are remarkable. The birds remind me of little clock-work toys (which rather dates me I suppose!)

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  9. Great set of shots Pete, sorry, just catching up with the world.Spent a day at the Alice Springs Desert Park a couple of weekends ago, one of the staff put out a stick with heaps of cobwebs on it near a tree so birds could use them to build nests. Wasn't long before the stick was bare again, maybe a photo opp at the Island?

  10. A wonderful series and a perfect nest.