Sunday, March 15, 2009

Pied butcherbird

We had a gas leak scare last night. I came in from Mike's game and thought I smelled gas, it was much stronger near the water heater. So we called the landlord and power company. We evacuated the house with the cats. It turns out it was really a problem with the sewer line though, smelled very similar to gas.

Goal for the week 10hrs
work on the figure with the Anubis mask
start the modeling clay sphinx to be cast


The pied butcherbird (Cracticus nigrogularis) inhabits much of Australia and eats insects and small animals. They similar to shrikes in that they have a larder behavior and will gather large numbers of insects and small animals hooked into tree crevices in an effort to impress mates. It also hooks larger prey on tree crevices and thorns to hold it down while it tears them into edible chunks with it's hooked bill. It does this as it's feet unlike a raptor's are not strong enough to hold large prey. Unlike shrikes they are known for having a beautiful flute-like complex song, they also include the songs of other birds in their own. They are occasionally featured in studies that look at the ability of birds to appreciate music. When in urban environments they respond well to peoples efforts to feed them and will sometimes become quasi-tame enough to eat from people's hands. It is advised if you do feed them to stick to items that are good for insectivores like mealworms and other whole insects, bread and processed foods are bad for them.

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