The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #90351   Message #1713033
Posted By: Bob Bolton
08-Apr-06 - 05:20 AM
Thread Name: Origins: Kookaburra - possible copyright info.
Subject: RE: Origins: Kookaburra - possible copyright info.
G'day Joybell,

A couple of small corrections:

... Here, in Australia, a Gum Tree is any tree of the Eucalypt group ...
A gum tree is actually one of the smooth-barked eucalypts - the ones that exude a (usually blood red) gum from cracks in the bark - or insect attack points (as a protection against further attack. The rough-barked eucalypts don't often exude gum and are just called eucalypts ... or by their species name (eg "stringybark", for the most obvious example).

... They become quite tame and will grab meat from the hands of picknickers if they get a chance ... Everybody loves Kookaburras ...
Not so much tame as "brazen"! Some years back we were picnicking with my brother Graeme and Anne, his wife ... at Barrenjoey Lighthouse in the Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park - noth of Sydney. We were getting stuck into a chicken salad - when I heard a squawk from Graeme. I turned to see that a kookaburra had landed on his left forearm and was leaning over to pick up a chicken leg in its beak. As soon as the leg was firmly held, the kookaburra flew up into a fork, high in a nearby gum tree ... and beat the chicken leg firmly against the tree trunk a half dozen times ... just to make sure it was dead, before eating it!

Another time, we camped in the Warrumbungle National Park (north-east NSW) and the campers next to us had their fireplace going well - to cook a meal of lamb chops and snags (sausages). I heard one of them call out that a kookaburra had landed on the back of one of the camp chairs by the fireplace ... and as they all looked at the kookaburra ... it made its choice of the sausages, swooped over the freplace to steal a sausage - and again, characteristically, beat the sausage a couple of times against a tree trunk before flying off with it (back to the nest?).