Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Spangled Dronga

My friend Eileen from the I.O.W. said she was missing my Australian bird on a Wednesday post so especially for her today, I am showing you the Spangled Drongo.  This bird was in my daughter’s garden but often the sun was in the wrong quarter to photograph it, hence some are in silhouette however even then you would recognise it.  I will give you a little information about this bird.


The Spangled Drongo (Dicrurus bracteatus) is a bird of the family Dicruridae.

It is the only Drongo to be found in Australia. "Drongo" is Australian slang for "idiot", possibly referring to the bird's uninhibited and sometimes comical behaviour as it swoops and perches in search of insects, small birds and occasionally, small skinks.


Its basically black plumage is iridescent with blue and purple highlights. When it - seasonally - visits urban areas it is easily tamed by throwing small pieces of raw meat into the air, when it will accurately swoop and catch them mid-air.


The most remarkable characteristic of its appearance is its tail, which is described by Morcombe as "long, outcurved and forked"and on first examination looks like its feathers are crossed over - like crossing your fingers.


Whilst this bird is often silent, it sometimes makes astonishingly loud, complex and entertaining calls that may sound like a "sneeze".


 Breeding
Drongos are altitudinal and latitudinal migrants.

In the high altitude areas around Brisbane, Qld, Australia, they arrive in late spring and leave with their new crop of juveniles in early to mid-summer. Nests are cup shaped in open spaces, where it is difficult for predators to access without being seen, 75% up the canopy. Each year, they produce 3-5 young.


The Spangled Drongo is an amazing mimic taking most of her vocabulary from the sounds she hears and weaving them into her own virtuoso aria.

I hope you enjoyed seeing and hearing about this Australian bird.

Many thanks for visiting and also to those who left comments on any of my blogs.

I am linking this post with Wild Bird Wednesday.

57 comments:

  1. Interesting facts about the drongo Margaret although it doesn't appear to be as much of an 'idiot' as it's name might suggest! That nest looks a bit precarious though?...[;o)

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    1. Hi Trevor I never thought them as 'idiots' when I saw them. Thanks for comment.

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  2. Aren't they beautiful birds? I am always amazed at just how many of our birds are skilled mimics.

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    1. Hi EC Yes so am I. Many thanks for your comment.

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  3. Great post and info on your Drongo.. Thanks for sharing, have a happy day!

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    1. Hi Eileen Thanks for your comment and I am glad you enjoyed the post. Have a great day.

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  4. Thank you for looking in Margaret, this is quite an interesting bird, and even in Silhouette your photos look good.
    Take care Gordon.

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    1. HI Gordon I am glad you enjoyed this post and thanks for your kind comments

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  5. I'm yet to see one for myself

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    1. HI Carole Maybe , someday. Thanks for popping in today and have a great evening.

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  6. Knowing I will probably never see this bird the photos give me the opportunity. Thank You for the fine photos and information on the birds habits.

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    1. HI Grampy Glad you enjoyed both the photos and information and thanks for comment.

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  7. Knowing I will probably never see this bird the photos give me the opportunity. Thank You for the fine photos and information on the birds habits.

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  8. HI Grampy Yes this is were blogger is great, we all can see birds that we may never see. Thanks for comment.

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  9. Excellent...they look quite similar to our Black Cowbirds with red eyes [when they're adults]

    To have one like this in your yard [any yard] would be a lifetime thrill.

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    1. HI Anni Many thanks for your comment and glad you liked the bird.

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  10. I liked . . . and loved the "feed me please" photo . . .

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    1. HI Lynne Glad to please and thanks for comment.

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  11. I can remember these fron when I was in Australia, great name for a bird!

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    1. H Stuart Yes I thought you might know this bird. Thanks for comment.

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  12. neat looking bird! i like the silhouette shots, too.

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    1. HI Tex Many thanks for comment and glad you liked the silhouette.

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  13. Love their shiny color.
    Your silhouette shots are lovely!
    Quite a unique tail shape.
    Have a wonderful day!

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    1. Hi Carletta Glad you enjoyed this post and thanks for comment.

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  14. Good one Eileen, you picked a nice one too. Beautiful photos too Margaret.

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  15. A Spangled Drogon. I I had to say that name out loud:) Reminds me of a Bronzed Cowbird. Another new bird from your blog:) Thanks for sharing!

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    1. HI Chris Glad you were able to see a new bird from my blog and thanks for comment.

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  16. lol, that is some hungry chicks. :) Idot of not, it is quite attractive.

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    1. HI NF Yes I agree and thanks for comment.

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  17. that´s some hungry chicks! Idiot of not, it is quite attractive.

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  18. Pretty bird- I love the silhouette shots!

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    1. HI Terri I am glad you liked the Silhouette shots and thanks for comment.

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  19. Although he's not as brightly colored as some, that is a beautiful bird. He looks so poised and elegant. :-) Thanks for stopping in today at Cranberry Morning. It's always a little intimidating for me to join the Hodgepodge on Wednesdays because it seems a bit more revealing than my personality is comfortable with.

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    1. HI CM Many thanks for your comment and I am glad you liked this bird.

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  20. Beautiful bird, Margaret... I have never seen a Spangled Drongo.... Gorgeous. I like the fact that you give details in your posts... thanks--so interesting.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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    1. HI Betsy Glad you liked this new bird to you and many thanks for comment.

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  21. Brilliant post Margaret. Thank you, I enjoyed learning about this very interesting bird.

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    1. HI Denise Glad you enjoyed the shots as well as the information. Many thanks for comment.

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  22. It's a beautiful bird. I love the shot of the nest with the chicks.

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    1. HI Gunilla Yes the chicks are cute and thanks for comment.

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  23. Hello Margaret!
    Fantastic post.
    I am delighted with these birds.
    I marvel at your gorgeous photos.
    Greetings.

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    1. HI Lucia Many thanks for comment and I am glad you enjoyed this bird.

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  24. A very interesting bird. Not the idiot the name implies. Comical behavior does not an idiot make. Oh no one might call me an idiot. Boo! MB

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    1. HI No I am sure it is not an idiot and thanks for comment.

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    1. HI EM Yes I agree. Thanks for comment

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  26. Great series on the Drongo.

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  27. I enjoyed your information and photos very much. I thought the pictures that look like silhouettes are especially attractive.

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  28. Nice shots and info. Great silhouettes.

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  29. Magnifique post Margaret, on apprend beaucoup de choses dans tes publications et j'adore!
    Très joli post !
    Have a nice day.
    Cath.

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  30. WoW, so many beautiful images, colors and critters!! Awesome capture of the bitty babies!!

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  31. Very interesting bird Margaret! One I have never heard of before.

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  32. Those darn Australian birds make my local birds look rather drab. Both in color and shape...
    Very nice photos...

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  33. Hi Margaret,
    Thanks for giving me the link to this Post, and a beautiful response it has received.
    I've loved reading your information. And I've experienced the new melodies added to my Spangles's normal sound, especially over the past two years, don't know yet if this year the repertoire has been expanded or changed.
    Your photos are quite perfect. They truly are a beautiful bird. And for their size they certainly add a broad range of meaty bits to their diet. With you having actually seen one, you'd be aware of the marvellous acrobatics, and constant checking of everything around them.
    I find they are difficult to photograph with their iridescent colours constantly changing and showing through their black plumage in sunlight, but gorgeous to watch changing, as well as the silver looking spots on their breast feathers.
    Their tail shapes is a definite way to identify them even when in silhouette, which your photos show. Then I've found their distinctive sneezy, screechy repetitive loud sound is also a way to know they are nearby. Then their red coloured eyes when can be seen is so bright and alert.
    Feels wonderful to have been able to read your Post, and have met another who has had time with Australia's rather special Spangled Drongo.
    Thanks too for visiting my Post on Spangles. Very appreciated.

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  34. Possible all my comment effort just disappeared. Oh bother Margaret, I'll come back and try again

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  35. Ahh, maybe not, forgot you check first. See you again soon

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