As usual, ladies and gentlemen, I have far too many photos for my forthcoming July Changing Seasons post. This is fortunate as I think this little bird, the weebill, that my True Love and I managed to photograph on a recent outing, deserves its own post.
The weebill, Smicrornis brevirostris, is Australia’s smallest bird. It is 8-9 centimetres and weighs on average 6 grams. It is a noisy little bird and you can usually hear the flight crew before seeing them. They often frolic in the tree tops and it is rare to get a good look at them before they are off again at speed.
My True Love and I thought the weebills were so sweet until we watched one bash the crap out of its prey. (Click on photos to enlarge)
You have to admire the weebill’s temerity. We think it was feasting on sawfly larvae (colloquially known as spitfires). Sawfly larvae excrete noxious and distasteful liquid from their mouths and therefore have few predators. When we were kids, we stayed well clear of those seething masses of larvae. What do think? Is it eating sawfly larvae?
Sawfly larvae or not, our little weebill was delighted with his catch and was determined to have its way with the evil spawn, providing us with a few precious moments to take photos.