It is Noisy Miner Manorina melanophrys breeding season again and we have three chicks in a nest just outside our bedroom window. The female does the nest building lining the twigs with bit of carpet from the cat’s scratching post. This year she was cheeky enough to pinch some of the cat’s fur itself! Poor Sally was asleep in the sun and leapt a foot in the air.

We were confused for a while when we saw four different birds coming to the nest to feed the chicks. Apparently a number of male birds help with the feeding.

We like the Noisy Miners. They are a honeyeater which habitats the disturbed edges of forests and our backyards. The Miners do force some smaller birds out these forest edges: edge effect. However, they also keep the Indian Myna Acridotheres tristis – chocolate brown colour, out of our forests. They are also the alert birds for their habitat, letting everyone know if is a cat or snake on the prowl or a bird of prey around.

Rather than worry about the Miners we are working to reverse the edge effect by consolidating the forest habitat by clearing garden plants that have escaped into the bush and where possible taking the native plant species into the backyards.

Watch the chicks growing up – almost ready to fledge.

It’s week four of the semester, you have

Mai & Jian with their weapons

handed in your first assignment, now you are studying for the mid-semester test and you are starting to wonder if you really want to be at university. Is there a life beyond text books?

If you love the Australian bush and need some fresh air and excerise to help you study, join us for Wednesday Bushcare in Fox Gully. Just two stops from Nathan Campus by Route 120 bus. Take Route 120 bus to Graden City and get off at the Hibscus Sports Complex on Klumpp Road: 15 to 20 minutes from Nathan to Fox Gully Bushcare site. Email or call to check on weekly meeting point.