Wet-season visitors – PIPs and Koels

Torres Strait Pigeons, aka Pied Imperial-Pigeons (i.e. PIPs) and Koels, aka Stormbirds or Rainbirds, are Wet-season visitors to the Townsville region. As I write, the Wet hasn’t arrived but the visitors have been with us for months.

The PIPs are often to be seen high in the tallest trees; their call is a baritone “Coo”, as befits their size, and we tend to smile when we hear them. The Koels, on the other hand, are rarely seen but the males’ incessant calling – a frantic rising wockawockwocka! – can wear out its welcome. The females are far quieter, which is probably a good thing.

These observations were sparked by the fact that I managed to photograph both species on one day recently:

female Koel on palm
Female Koel; a male was a couple of metres above her in the palm tree
Torres Strait Pigeon
Torres Strait Pigeon; there was another one feeding on the same bunch of palm seeds

Now all we want is some rain!

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