Grey Go-away Bird: You Won’t See This in Your American Backyard

expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa
expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa

Goldfinch and young Tufted Titmouse. October in Pennsylvania.

I didn’t become bird-obsessed until we moved to our house in a rural area of Pennsylvania. There I would take my writing outside and work on a project while surrounded by birds. On our few acres, we have a varied habitat: woods (deciduous and hardwood); meadow; wetland.

expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa

Chicadee and female goldfinch in a western Pennsylvania October.

Our feeders were always active with finches, Black-capped Chicadees, Tufted Titmice, Northern Cardinals, Downey and Red-bellied Woodpeckers. The nearby trees, brush and ground always held Pileated Woodpeckers, Cedar Waxwings, Indigo Buntings, robins, and sparrows. At night I sometimes played owl calls on my laptop to try to bring in a Barred Owl (nearly crapped myself when he flew within a meter of me!), Screech Owls and the neighborhood Great Horned Owl.

expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa

Many people confuse this Red-BELLIED Woodpecker with the Red-headed Woodpecker, because of his brightly colored head. But if you’ve ever actually seen a red-headed woodpecker, you won’t mistake the two again. The red belly isn’t visible in this photo, which is good, because honestly, once you’ve seen his red belly, that yonic image will be burned into your brain forever.

I always got excited with the change of seasons and migration time, when our house finches were offset by purple finches, and Carolina Wrens joined our House Wrens. Carolina Wrens are Kurt’s favorite, with their brushed white eyebrow and perky, upbeat call.

It will be exciting when we return to visit and enjoy our favorites again, but I’m also enjoying adding to my favorites here, including the strange-calling Grey Go-away Bird (aka the Grey Lourie, Grey Loerie, or Kwêvoël).

expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa

To bring a grey go-away bird to your feeder, put out a tasty apple

If Kurt doesn’t eat all his weekly apples and they begin to go bad, I simply spear one on the clever bird feeder my South African friend, Claire gave me as a house-warming present. It doesn’t take long before one of our resident Louries finds the fruit, and in no time a few of these crested grey beauties finish it off.

expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa

Grey Lourie eating apple

expat life Pretoria South Africa travel birding Africa

Grey Go-away Bird

 

Happy Over-the-Hump Day, friends!

Love, Marla

P.S. The call of a Grey Go-away bird is not for everyone. I find it kind of charming and can imitate it almost perfectly now, much to Kurt’s dismay. I won’t share my imitation, but here’s a much more entertaining, and strange, video I came across on You Tube while looking for the call of a Grey Go-Away Bird:

7 Comments on “Grey Go-away Bird: You Won’t See This in Your American Backyard

  1. Pingback: Tuesdays in Tshwane: Collared Barbet | MarLa Sink Druzgal

  2. OMG MARLA!! that is hilarious!! That vid is a scene from “The Gods must be Crazy” !! One of my very favorite movies!! Hahaha!! Awesome!! If you haven’t seen it, you gotta watch it!!
    Careful where you toss those glass soda bottles, hahaha!!

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