Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Wild Bird Wednesday 38 - Masked Lapwing

This will be a rather more brief than normal WBW - I'm still dealing with intermittently poor, but consistently frustrating internet access.  Comments from me may be a bit delayed this week!

This bird is a Masked Lapwing (Vanellus miles).  It's a common and highly visible bird, seeming to enjoy taking up residence on the grassy patches in the middle of roundabouts and sports ovals.  It is a shade under 40 cm long - but packs a good deal more aggression that than its size would suggest possible.

I had hoped to be able to capture the sharp bony spurs that stick out from the "shoulders" of the wings - but this bird is too relaxed to show them.  These spurs are used to attack predators - including dogs and humans!  They also give the bird its "old" common name of Spur-Winged Plover.

Incidentally, these pictures were taken with my camera snuggled down into a pillow that was bent over  the door of my car.  Its a great way to support a long lens.




Now its your turn.

Click on the link below to join WBW.  And remember - visit, invite and enjoy!

51 comments:

  1. handsome bird! odd and handsome at the same time. :)

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  2. I like the idea of supporting a long lens on a pillow!

    This bird sounds ferocious. :)

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  3. that´s a really cool looking lapwing. :)

    Thanks for hosting. :)

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  4. Fab looking bird and I love the idea of the lens pillow!

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  5. Love its markings... Great photos :) Thanks for hosting!

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  6. Wow! Great photos of a super bird. It's amazing that such a gentle-looking bird can have such weaponry!

    Thanks for hosting WBW Stewart

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  7. I like that yellow face.
    Well captured Stewart!
    Computer and Internet problems are always frustrating. Hope things get better for you.

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  8. Great serie of photos. We did see this bird when we visited Australia in 2008. I think we saw a lot in Darwin..?

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  9. Cool bird, Stewart. I seem to like all the Lapwings. Is the yellow part of the face the mask? Great capture, thanks for hosting. Have a happy week!

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  10. Spotty internet must really be annoying. Glad you are able to post and host the meme, though! Unusual looking bird and very striking with that bright yellow beak. Beautiful shots. Your idea of the pillow is a great tip! Thanks for that and for hosting WBW. :)

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  11. Good looking bird -- and I guess its a good thing that he was so relaxed you couldn't get the sharp pointy things.

    Thanks for the great idea for a travel tripod.

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  12. so traditional the stance when faced with a human wanting to take a photograph. The pillow idea was a good one; it is very convenient to be able to take photos from your car sometimes. I read somewhere, a little bean-bag is a good thing to pack for something to prop your camera when out and about ...I still haven't thought to do that

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  13. Those birds look beautiful but act horribly! I do not like being dive-bombed when I am walking by and minding my own business!!

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  14. What an interesting bird. Great shots!
    Hope the internet issues improve for you soon. That is frustrating.

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  15. If you didn't have such great pictures I would swear you were making these birds up. Every week you come up with something I haven't heard of ... guess it must be my ignorance. This is an awesome bird and I love the aggressive part of his personality. It is good for them to have a way of protecting themselves as often the odds are against them. Now I am going to my bird book and look up lapwing ... and then I am going to take a pillow and put it in the car for future picture taking. I have a hard time supporting a heavy lens and this just might do the trick. Thanks for another learning experience, Stewart. You are always a pleasure to visit.

    Andrea @ From The Sol

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  16. I enjoyed your photos of the Masked Lapwing Stewart. I've never seen one before. Great shots!

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  17. Hi Stewart...Love that mask it almost doesn't look real!!
    Interesting about the wing spurs, and I think I'd prefer to know it by the Spur-Wing Plover name then I could be prepared !! ; )
    Hope your internet access get's it's act together : )
    Grace

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  18. He has such a unique look! Great captures! Love his mask :)

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  19. His beak looks like a mask! Thanks for hosting Stewart.

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  20. thanks for the tip of the pillow for the heavy lens...most of the time I don't have a car window to rest it on....great shots Stewart! Never seen a lapwing.

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  21. Great find, Stewart. Sorry to hear you are still having internet issues.

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  22. Lovely set of images! Yes, pillow support is a great way to support the longer lenses used for bird photography!

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  23. That yellow "mask" is so unique! Very nice shots!

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  24. I love lapwings but have never seen a masked lapwing. Great photos and post. I'm still trying to link to WBW with my post today. But without success!

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  25. He really does look as if he is wearing a yellow rubber mask. :)

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  26. A very handsome bird indeed. Good shots!!!
    Have a great rest of the week.

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  27. He really does look as if he is wearing a yellow rubber mask. :)

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  28. What a beauty! I'd love to see that aggressive little bird in action. Sounds like a perfect defense for a little guy or gal :) Great shots, and thanks for hosting! -Tammy

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  29. Very interesting - may be a common bird but this is new to me. My curiosity got to me, so I searched to see photos of his bony shoulders.

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  30. Great pictures, beautiful markings on this bird. Hope your internet access improves.

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  31. This is my first time participating in this blog hop. I am going to have fun visiting some new blogs!

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  32. Love learning about birds from around the globe - had never heard of this bird before.

    Sorry to not be posting this WBW - crazy week for work. Hoping to post with you next week. Looking forward to reading everyone else's posts - thanks again for hosting it!

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  33. Very preety bird Stewart!Great photos!Hope you have a lovely day!Happy April!!
    Dimi..

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  34. Super shots of yet another bird I've never seen!
    Great idea using the pillow, but if I tried that, I'd end up taking a nap!

    --Wally

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  35. Quite a mask! Good for aggressive demeanor.
    Thanks for hosting WBW!

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  36. I didn't know Spur winged had had the name changed until now Stewart. In fact with it being an "exotic" I never realised what the spur was about either. The lapwing family all seem to be noisy birds and aggressive in defence of their young. Our lapwings are known to nest on roundabouts too, until the local authority come along and mow the grass. Enjoyed your pics and thanks for hosting once agin.

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  37. Stewart, the best time to visit the Channel Islands would be in the Spring. On the 20th, we will go to Santa Cruz Island, and there will be more birds to see.

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  38. Splendid photos of this bird which I never seen before. "Attack predators" = amazing!
    I'm a bit late this week, sorry for your internet problems!
    Greetings Pia

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  39. What a marvelous looking bird and it surely does look a lot like a Plover. that face is awesome, and wow, spurs...does not sound like too much fun if one is attacked~

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  40. What a funny looking creature, Stewart, with that yellow mask! Great photos!

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  46. support from a pillow for long lens!!!!
    This is killer idea...
    You should patent it dude!!!


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