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Inspiring and Supporting Photographers of Australian Birds

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Brolga

Brolga (Image ID 45369)
Photographed byMichael Hamel-Green on Tue 16th Mar, 2021 and uploaded on Wed 17th Mar, 2021 .
Resolution1800x1273
Viewed74
ID45369
CommentI had encountered a party of four Brolga in the same vicinity of the Western Lagoon at Werribee Treatment Plant a week before but unfortunately in very un-photogenic surrounds near a dirt track. On a further visit a week later, I met up with them again, this time in the more natural reedy surroundings of one of the Western Lagoon ponds. They were working their way gradually from one end to the other, not too mindful of my proximity, foraging amongst the reeds as they went. There appeared to be two pairs, this being one pair. The photo shows Brolgas’ distinctive adult plumage: grey foreheads, reddish bands around the back of the head, grey ear “muffs”, smoky grey plumage (in this case given a bluish cast by the overhead blue sky reflected in the water), and prominent tail bustles. While male and females are very similar, it is possible that the one on the right with a smaller black throat dewlap is a female. As Gisela Kaplan notes in her new book on “Bird Bonds”(2019), Brolgas not only go in for elaborate courtship dances and rituals but also mate for life. So perhaps this was the daily stroll of a long partnered couple, members of a locally endangered Brolga community in Victoria, determined to continue bringing up families despite everything, and most certainly finding refuge within the Werribee Treatment Plant’s wetlands and grasslands that provide such vital sanctuary for so many bird species.
EquipmentNikonZ7ii Nikon 300mm f4 PF TC1.4
420mm
ISO 1000
1/1250th f10
Monopod
LocationWerribee Treatment Plant, Werribee, Victoria
Keywordsmale, female, adult
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