General chat

“Is there any way we could have a thread for the more lightweight stuff like music and general chat?”

Do it here. Please no personal attacks or bickering. Anything abusive, provocative or inflammatory may be deleted.

15 Comments

  1. phantom snowflake

     /  February 14, 2018

  2. phantom snowflake

     /  February 14, 2018

  3. phantom snowflake

     /  February 14, 2018

    Sorry, third time I’ve posted this, my favourite NZ song of the last couple of years:

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  February 14, 2018

      I saw an EP of 10 Guitars in the opshop, and a 1982 one of Michael Jackson. I had forgotten that Engelbert Humperdinck first sang 10 Guitars. It’s surprising what turns up – I have an EP of the George Wilder song.

  4. phantom snowflake

     /  February 14, 2018

    Here’s one for Gezza: “Thieving pūkeko terrorise chickens, gobble fruit and drive property owner crazy”

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/western-leader/101395239/thieving-pkeko-terrorise-chickens-gobble-fruit-and-drive-property-owner-crazy

    As for me, I’m definitely on the side of the Pukeko; they were there first!

    • Kitty Catkin

       /  February 14, 2018

      They don’t seem to terrorise a band of chooks who run loose around here.

      They do ruin gardens, it has to be admitted. My mother and stepfather became less and less enamoured of them as time went on.

      • phantom snowflake

         /  February 14, 2018

        I know the area (Oratia, West Auckland) very well. There certainly are high numbers of Pukeko there, and sadly I know of people who shoot them, mainly because of their liking for digging up vegetable gardens. The more enlightened locals use chicken mesh or similar to protect their gardens.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  February 14, 2018

          I seem to remember that my mother and stepfather cursed and used nets of some kind. I can’t remember exactly what they did, but it worked.

          I heard of someone who fired a gun into the air, which frightened the pukekos away from his place without hurting them.

          As pukekos become more and more a national symbol, appearing on bags and other things, being characters in children’s books and so on, shooting them may be considered to be anti-social and unacceptable. Let’s hope so.

        • Kitty Catkin

           /  February 14, 2018

          I saw ducks, pooks and chooks around the pond the last time I passed by. Not many pooks, but there are always more ducks. The chooks were just doing their own thing. The pooks were also minding their own business.

    • Gezza

       /  February 14, 2018

      Yes. They are territorial birds so they’ll be claiming his grounds as their territory now. They probably don’t mind sharing it with him.

      Their behaviours do differ slightly from place to place, from what I have read. From my own observations here, they can be aggressive when competing for food with other birds, but not always. I’ve seen it with the ducks. One minute they’re all happily picking up wheat together over the fence as a mixed group of birds & the next minute one or more of the pooks will get peed off with a duck or two for stealing theirs & chase them off.

      The ducks themselves are surprisingly competitive & aggressive with each other. I have two, a male & female, who come up when they see me feeding the pukekos & who will themselves attack any other ducks who come up too. These two ducks have also pecked at Pickles, the pooklet, to try and get her wheat.

      I need to be wary of Bluey, the big male pukeko. He is now aggressively territorial since I unwittingly came too close to the nest from which the pooklet was born. The others are timid & quite sweet in personality, but I never turn my back on Bluey. He’s run at me when I’ve done that & would possibly have another go if I let my guard down. He did most of the feeding & nest sitting with the pooklet, although Pickles is now already semi-independent & they will leave the pooklet on its own & only intermittently feed it when they are all together.

      I have seen the three adults repeatedly attack a large, old, black-backed gull who landed in the stream not too long ago. I thought they’d killed it, but it played dead until it was safe to move out of the streamside foliage they’d driven it into. There’s no doubt they injured it.

      • phantom snowflake

         /  February 14, 2018

        Cheers, your observations certainly are fascinating.

        • Gezza

           /  February 14, 2018

          Yes the pooklet was nearby & quite small. The gull was large enuff to represent a real threat to its safety, & they might just be genetically programmed to attack certain birds like gulls, which will go for small pukeko chicks.

          My main worry at the moment is Pickles, who is a very keen & competent swimmer, & makes constant loud baby shrieks when separated from an adult for a while, as she plops into the water & swims over to join them if they’ve wandered away. She’s just done this in the fading light outside. The problem is she’s swimming straight past a huge bloody eel, lying in wait half out from the eel stump opposite.

          Gives me the heebie jeebies – sometimes it comes out and swims over out of sight to where she’s disappeared from view under the nearside bank. I breathe a sigh of relief when Pickles emerges, still shrieking, plodding along among the foliage of the lower bank to one of the adults somewhere below.

          She’s just started growing flight feathers but no way could she get any lift out of those tiny wings in an emergency yet.

          They might be interested in fruit but it may depend on the individual bird. They’ve rejected blueberries, strawberries, & apricot. They like grass, various roots they pull up, wheat, bread that people have tossed on their lawns, insects, fish, ducklings (unfortunately) – they’re omnivores.

          • phantom snowflake

             /  February 14, 2018

            The difference between ‘Us’ and ‘Them’ is that we feed on each other psychologically, and for fun…

            • Gezza

               /  February 14, 2018

              We still stake out our philosophical or political territory & defend it, often aggressively.

            • phantom snowflake

               /  February 14, 2018

              In terror of the prospect of ‘Ego Death’.