Backyard Buddies

Birds of Prey

Australian Hobby

LEARN MORE

Photo credit: Richard Waring

Australian Hobby

The Australian Hobby lives across mainland Australia and is sometimes, although rarely, spotted in Tasmania. The colour of the Australian Hobby's feathers varies across Australia depending on their age, sex and the humidity. Generally a hobby has grey wings and back,and a brown stomach. When the humidity goes up, their feathers will darken and their grey wings can appear black. They are skilled hunters and one of the fastest, most agi..

READ MORE

Barn Owl

LEARN MORE

Photo credit: Michael Todd

Barn Owl

You may have seen an Australian Barn Owl as a ghostly white form flying past your headlights and heard a drawn-out rasping screech echoing through the night. The Australian Barn Owl, Tyto alba, lives all across Australia. Their calls vary from a breathy hiss to an unearthly shriek, and they will snap and clack their beaks during mating and threat displays. They sleep in well camouflaged spots during the day, so the rare call of the o..

READ MORE

Raptors

LEARN MORE

Photo credit: Shane Ruming

Raptors

A surprising number of raptors live in suburbs and even the centres of Australian cities. They do an excellent job of keeping down pest species such as mice and grasshoppers, as well as introduced birds such as starlings and feral pigeons. Here are some of the most common raptors you're likely to see near your home: Australian Kestrel (also called Nankeen Kestrel): Being nomadic, it will appear wherever mice and grasshopper plagues o..

READ MORE

Southern Boobook

LEARN MORE

Photo credit: Sabines-Sunbird

Southern Boobook

Southern Boobooks , Ninox novaeseelandiae, are the smallest and most common owl in Australia If you have a Southern Boobook Owl in your backyard, you will hear them calling for a mate during the long winter nights. The official breeding season does not start until spring, but many boobooks are already serenading their partner. Boobooks have a special call only for their mate. Their normal call is a simple double hoot, but to his..

READ MORE

Wedge-tailed Eagle

LEARN MORE

Photo credit: John Spencer - OEH

Wedge-tailed Eagle

The Wedge-tailed Eagle, Aquila audax, is the largest bird of prey in Australia. It can appear sinister, with its dark feathers, hooked beak and distinctive call, but Wedge-tails are excellent parents and partners. Wedge-tails mate for life and are extremely attentive parents. Wedge-tailed Eagles spiral and circle around each other in their courtship ritual before sharing nest building and child-rearing duties. They build very large n..

READ MORE