It may be just a natural thing to do, but a bowerbird’s decision to take up residency in Le Hamel Retirement Village has been embraced by the residents.
Village manager Cathy Snook says residents have even taken to leaving blue items outside their front doors hoping the new resident will snap them up for its nest.
“It’s just been great for the residents. They have been talking about the bowerbird now for some time and everyone is sharing their stories,” she said.
Heather Jones, who has lived in the village for 28 years, says fellow residents appear to be tickled pink with their bowerbird.
“Many haven’t seen a bowerbird nest before,” she said.
“In my time here, it is the first bowerbird to nest here. But I couldn’t tell you why it has decided to make the village its home.
“I don’t know much about bowerbirds, but it is pretty exciting for the residents."
Another long-term resident, Reg Bernauer says a bowerbird was prominent at the neighbouring Hibbard boat yard for a number of years.
I don’t know much about bowerbirds, but it is pretty exciting for the residents.Heather Jones
“It could be him or one of his offspring,” Reg said.
“It’s definitely a satin bowerbird, which has completely different colouring to the immature and the female.
“You generally see the male of the species, they are just really shiny. They look beautiful.”
While deer have also been spotted inside the village, Reg said it was his first encounter with a nesting bowerbird.
The birds in my backyard website says the satin bowerbird are medium-sized birds.
“The adult male has striking glossy blue-black plumage, a pale bluish white bill and a violet-blue iris,” the site says.
“Young males may begin to acquire their adult plumage in their fifth year and are not fully 'attired' until they are seven.
“Satin Bowerbirds are found along most of the eastern and south-eastern coast of Australia. They prefer the wetter forests and woodlands, and nearby open areas, although those around the Atherton Tableland are largely rainforest inhabitants.
“The mature male Satin Bowerbirds are mostly solitary.”
The male Satin Bowerbird is perhaps the best known and well documented of all the bowerbirds in Australia. This fame partially stems from its practice of building and decorating a bower to attract females. This consists of two parallel walls of sticks, is built on the ground, and is used as a courtship arena during the breeding season, the website says.