In Gundabooka National Park south of Bourke in outback NSW I was lucky to come across a small party of six Mulga Parrots - 3 males and 3 females. Mulga Parrots are often paired, suggesting a strong couple bond.
I say lucky because it was late afternoon in winter and a severe drought has reduced bird species numbers and general abundance greatly across much of NW Victoria, western NSW, SW Qld and SA. On a 5km 2 hour walk through mulga woodland (Acacia aneura) I saw only one female fairy wren, one Emu and the six Mulga Parrots. Another one hour walk the following morning yielded one male Hooded Robin, one Singing Honeyeater and a Grey Butcherbird. In good times Mulga woodland can be very rich in birds.
The Mulga Parrots were feeding on the ground - appropriately in a Mulga woodland - where they worked quietly picking up seeds. I managed to approach them in stages – their confiding nature allowing me to get quite close in the end.
Please click on photos to enlarge.
|Three of the six Mulga Parrots – two males and one female.|
|The male Mulga Parrot.|
|Another view of a male.|
|The more sombre female Mulga Parrot.|
|Another view of a female.|
|A rear view of a male and female Mulga Parrot perched together showing the rump and the narrow red band – the similar Red-rumped Parrot has a lot more red on the rump and has other significant colour differences.|
After spending 15 minutes or so observing and photographing the Mulgas I withdrew slowly and left them to continue feeding.
|This lone Singing Honeyeater was found foraging in mistletoe on a Mulga tree.|