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Old Oct 4, 2011, 3:12 AM   #1
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Default Behind the mask ...

... is a Lapwing [Vanellus miles]. Two masked lapwings are native to Australia, one across the north [Vanellus miles miles], and this one found throughout the south-eastern States [Vanellus miles novaehollandiae] and which is commonly known as the Spur-winged Plover (not to be confused with the northern hemisphere bird of the same name!) We find them to be very frustrating birds. They’re extremely flighty and quick to raise alarm. Often we’ll be quietly moving toward a group of waterbirds we want to shoot when out of nowhere comes the strident "kekekekekekekek" of a plover and they all rise into the air and off! With us too far away and not ready to take a shot!

This bird only allowed us to shoot it because we were in the vehicle crossing a flooded culvert on a back road and it had become used to vehicles carefully negotiating this section of road. Would have been a different story if we had alighted though.

#1


#2


#3 showing the spur on the wing


Both masked lapwings have the wing spurs, but it wasn't until I took this photo that I had ever seen it or read about it. Nothing like photography to broaden your knowledge, eh!

Bernice
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Old Oct 4, 2011, 7:37 AM   #2
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You sure do have some odd looking birds in the land down under.
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Old Oct 4, 2011, 6:38 PM   #3
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Wow, that's an awesome looking bird! Congrats from capturing it so well!
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Old Oct 5, 2011, 6:18 AM   #4
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Looks like the Phantom of the Opera! Nice work.
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Old Oct 5, 2011, 7:31 PM   #5
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Bernice, always enjoy your shots and your respect of nature.

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Old Oct 5, 2011, 11:29 PM   #6
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Thank you Bynx, saly, Caryl & jj for your comments.

Apparently the uniqueness of our birds is a product of environmental isolation due to our island status Bynx.

I agree Caryl — very 'Phantom of the Opera' — and when they turn round they're the same from the other side.

Again thanks for the comments — appreciated.

Bernice
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Old Oct 7, 2011, 1:48 PM   #7
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That's an awesome bird well captured.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 5:19 PM   #8
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Wow, you did extremely well to get these shots. Funny looking mask.
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Old Oct 10, 2011, 12:49 AM   #9
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Thanks very much Loren & banksy. I agree, the mask is most unusual.

Cheers

Bernice
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