It has been a very long time since I was able to add another bird to the list of species found on our property. Usually this is a cause of celebration. However, I am not sure if I am pleased to have spotted this small raptor. A few days before it appeared, a pair of Australian Wood Ducks walked up to the house with seven tiny ducklings. I have not seen any sign of ducklings since spotting the Swamp Harrier. So, either they ended up as Swamp Harrier food, or the duck family decided to go and live somewhere safer.
The photographs are not clear because I took them through the study window. Our dam is about fifty meters from the house, so I’m lucky the Swamp Harrier sat on the jetty long enough for me to pull out the camera and take a few quick snaps. Ducks were swimming on the dam at the time, and the Harrier dived down to water level. The slope of the dam bank hid whatever happened next.
Yes, I know…this is nature at work and Swamp Harriers have to eat too. I just wish they would choose to eat the exotic species, not the native ones. And especially not the ducklings I have been waiting to see for two years. More on that in the next post.