I went for a walk around Zealandia with a couple of photography friends. Our intention was to find and photograph some titipounamu (rifleman), however while we saw a family of them high in the trees, they didn’t give us any good opportunities to capture any useable images. It was awesome to see them flitting about in the tops of the trees. On our way to the titipounamu we saw and photographed many other birds.
Our first encounter was a family of Californian Quails. Mum, dad and three tiny little chicks. Quails usually have a lot more chicks in their clutch, so I suspect many have fallen prey to bigger birds looking to feed their own families. The male was being extremely protective of the remaining three chicks.
At this time of year there are many youngsters about demanding food from their parents and there were constant fledgling calls alerting us to where they were. Mostly high up in the trees making it very difficult to capture a good image, but sometimes it is nice to just watch nature happening around us and not worry about the image count. The robins were digging for grubs before flying off to find the hungry fledgling.
I missed the actual hand over but the image above gives you an idea of how high a lot of the birds were as we watched. We walked up to the discovery area to see if there were any hihi about. There weren’t. We did however see lots of korimako (bellbirds) flitting about in the trees.
The blue on the korimako’s beak is the pollen from the kotukutoku (tree fushia) flowers. We also saw lots of tieke (saddlebacks) up in the discovery area., though they too were very tricky to photograph.