Steve was working on a broken fence along the roadside in Lismore when he found a hidden treasure inside one of the fence posts, a nest of tiny little feather less birds and two eggs. Two Eastern Rosellas flying frantically above made it highly likely that it was their nest.
Eastern Rosellas nest in the hollow branches of dead or living gum trees, but due to the loss of old trees nests have been found in holes in rotting logs lying on the ground, and inside old fence posts.
Steve called WIRES and the nest with 5 chicks and 2 eggs were taken into care by WIRES volunteer Julie. Leaving the old fence post on the ground would not be an option due to the lack of cover and being on the side of the road.
Julie returned the following day with a nesting box which she placed in a nearby tree, she placed the nest inside the nest box, stood back and waited for as long as she could, considering the tiny birds and eggs could not be without warmth for too long. Julie returned with the nest for two more days, but the parent birds never returned to the site.
Julie left the nesting box just in case the parent birds return to lay another clutch.
The eggs hatched on the second day, and a milestone was reached yesterday ( a week later) with 7 little hatchlings opening their eyes.
They are high maintenance and will continue to be so till they learn to fly. Once they are old enough to fend for themselves they will be released back to the wild where they belong.
Eastern Rosellas eat mainly seeds but will also eat berries, fruit, nectar and insects. You may see Eastern Rosellas searching the ground for fallen seeds or feeding on grass seeds on the side on the road.
You can help these beautiful birds survive into the future.
Keep cats and dogs away from areas in your backyard and in parks where Rosellas feed.
Include a variety of native grasses, bushes and shrubs with seeds in your garden for the birds to feed on.
Preserve mature trees with hollows which provide safe and secure nesting sites, beyond the reach of predators.
Put a bird bath in your yard to give birds a drink and somewhere to splash around when it’s hot. Don’t forget to clean the bird bath every day.
Leave an area in your garden when mowing and allow the grass to go to seed, thus providing a food source for Rosellas and other seed eating birds.
Thank you Steve for calling WIRES and saving 7 little lives.
Pictures by Julie Marsh