Galah damage

9 posts / 0 new
Last post
Birdgirl2009
Birdgirl2009's picture
Galah damage

I noticed 2 galahs ringbarking this tree not last season but the one before. The tree did not die immediately - surprisingly because the damage is more than 2 feet high all the way around the trunk. I noticed the other day that the tree has now died completely. It is amazing what 2 little birds can do. That is why our galah box is on a pole. The first year it was in one of our gum trees and they chewed every branch. Two big branches have fallen down and some smaller ones.

Nesting hollow

Tree nearby has been ringbarked by nesting galahs

All branches have died

tarkineus
tarkineus's picture

How extraordinary. Why wood they do that? (don't pardon the pun :-)

Regards, "Tark" - Olympus 4/3rds colour

Birdgirl2009
Birdgirl2009's picture

THey do it to make the trunk smooth so predators such as monitor lizards can't grip easily and come up to the nest. They also rub their faces and necks around the opening to the nest and a white powder from their feathers coats the surface and makes it even smoother. See the white patches on our box:

Tassie

Unreal Birdgirl thanks for sharing I have never heard of that.
I have always said the day I stop learning is the day I am dead.
It all makes sense as to why they do it,Monitors are one of there biggest threats.

Birdgirl2009
Birdgirl2009's picture

Hi Tassie
I found a photo of Mr and Mrs Galah in action. They really wipe their faces vigorously over the patch they are working on, with a huge twisting of the very flexible neck.

tarkineus
tarkineus's picture

Thanks for that piece of info Birdgirl - I am amazed. I think that birds are a whole lot smarter than humans. Well, perhaps I should be speaking only for myself. :-)

Regards, "Tark" - Olympus 4/3rds colour

Birdgirl2009
Birdgirl2009's picture

Hi Tark
If you want to be amazed, try reading the book 'Alex and me" by Irene Pepperberg. It is about an African Grey Parrot communicating with his trainers. There are also videos of Alex and Griffin on the internet: youtube I think

tarkineus
tarkineus's picture

Thanks for that birdgirl. Sounds like an interesting read - I'll see if our State Library has the book.

Regards, "Tark" - Olympus 4/3rds colour

birdie
birdie's picture

Hey Birdgirl, that is really interesting. Great that you can observe so closely and that they perform normal behaviours even in an unnatural nest situation. The other day I was surprised when watching some nesting lorikeets on my morning walk. I didn't realise how much work with their beaks goes into digging out the hollows that they find. I had thought they were just opportunists who found holes already there!!

They are ingenious aren't they?

Cheers

Birdie

I'd rather be birding than feeding the trolls

Subscribe to me on YouTube