Miranda’s Daily Blog – Day 3

Day 3 – Some people aren’t too fond of Currawongs, in fact the poor things never seem to be anybody’s favourite bird. Maybe it’s because they lack in vibrant colours or melodic and dainty song, rather they are black and grey with their song more like a squawk. Or maybe it’s their beady eyes and slight resemblance to the kind of birds likely to star in old school horror films. But me, I have a soft spot for the Currawong. Once, when I left Tassie to visit Melbourne, for some strange reason it was that sound that I missed the most as I walked through the streets surrounded by unfamiliar buildings. I guess because hearing their call is a reminder to me that I am home. It is the every day sound of life in the Upper Florentine Valley, which lies on the other side of Mount Mueller, and has been home to me for several years. There you can hear their cries echoing eerily across the valley. And sometimes they would gather together in a tree, hundreds chattering away in some kind of Currawong convergence. It’s nice to hear them here in my new home too.

Last night I slept out on the deck and fell asleep looking at the stars scattered across the sky between the top branches of my tree. Across the gully the moonlight reflecting on leaves made the forest look as though it was speckled with stars too.

This morning I woke to the chirps of White Throated Honeyeaters busy getting breakfast in the branches above me. Today was the first time they came to visit. I wonder if they’ve been a bit cautious of my presence these past few days. It must seem strange having a human move in up here. It made me smile to see them. They are one of my favourite birds, and they too remind of feeling home at home in the Upper Florentine.

We’ve had several tree-sits at Camp Floz, but the tree I spent the most time in was called Front Sit. I know we didn’t have the most original names – Front Sit, Middle Sit, Back Sit – though we also had The Lungs of the Land (or simply ‘Lungs’ for short), Birds Nest and Floating Sit (a platform suspended mid-air between several trees). But Front Sit was my special tree where I spent many nights and days. Every morning the same group of White Throated Honeyeaters would visit me like clock work. Well, to be honest, they weren’t really there to see me, they were there for breakfast. But I enjoyed their presence. They have a sweet and happy sounding chirp as they hop around on the branches. Sometimes I would catch them watching me watching them. Interestingly they didn’t come to the other tree sits, only the Front Sit on a regular basis. Perhaps it had the best tucker on the block, I don’t know. I wonder if they feel the same about the empty space where the Front Sit once stood as I do.

I hope that today’s Honeyeaters will be back to visit me tomorrow morning. I guess we’ll wait and see. I hope you’re having a good night, talk to you again tomorrow – Miranda.

Posted on December 16, 2011, in Daily Blog. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I can very much relate to the sound of Currawongs reminding me of being back at home in the forests of Southern Tasmania. It’s amazing when you see them having those massive conferences in the trees. Once I saw a mob of Currawongs in one big old tree, and a group of Forest Ravens in another, all seeming to be talking to each other…maybe they were making decisions about territory. Once, when living in the bush in the Huon Valley, a Currawong woke me up by tapping on my bedroom window, and as soon as it saw I was awake it hopped around to the front door and waited for me to come and say hi (and no doubt feed it). Super smart birds! Thanks for your lovely posts Miranda, I hope you are enjoying the stars tonight xo

  2. Hi Miranda,

    Thank you for being in that gorgeous forest, bearing witness to what is happening there and sharing it around the world. Embarking on a journey of deep connection and transformation.

    I felt to send you this link of Julia Butterfly HIll, it is so beautiful when she speaks of her realisation of having love in her heart, near the end of the video.

    Enjoy the peacefulness and the immersion in your green world.

    Blessings from Shar

  3. Wonderful.. Very nice writing. Captivating. Yes, Currawongs are raucous all right, and they do like to have the occasional shindig. I think of the higher country when I hear them. Like up the top of Drys Bluff and on its slopes where I live.

  4. The sound of Currawongs is magic to my ears too. Thanks for your blogs Miiranda 🙂

  5. Enjoying your writing, Currawongs are one of my favorites also. I hope the honyeaters will be visiting your tree for a VERY long time!

  6. I hope you have many nights under the beautiful starry night sky Miranda. Love your writings, you bring the forest and the birds to me…… I know how much Front Sit meant to you, the heartbreak of losing that giant. I am sure the honeyeaters felt the loss of her as well. Hope your eye is improving lovely, thinking of you and sending love and hugs. Very powerful video Shar, thank you for sharing that, wonderful message of LOVE. Glenys

  7. They’re not popular with other birds because the steal eggs from nests. Sydney University (one of them) did a study where they put fake eggs in a bunch of suburban bird nests. The fake eggs were made of a soft putty and a large number of these bogus eggs had the beak mark impressions made by Currawongs within a couple of weeks.

    They didn’t used to be in Sydney during spring but large year round urban food sources has shifted them from migratory to resident. Not least source of course is people feeding them which has impacted native small bird populations seriously.

  8. Dear Miranda,

    My name is Akira from Japan Tropical Forest Action Network (JATAN). I am appalled to know HCV forests surrounding you are being logged to make flooring plywood. More than 90% of TAT products are exported to Japanese housing markets. JATAN has been working with Huon Valley Environment Centre (HVEC) to expose these issues to consuming companies in Japan. I have now uploaded the information on your project to JATAN’s web site. http://www.jatan.org/?p=1740
    Your courageous project inspires a motivation for us to change market ethics in Japan.



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