This dear little bird is known as a Willie Wagtail, for its manner of waving its fan tail from side to side as it calls and forages on the ground. It is a true fantail, with striking black and white plumage and endearing curiosity. On a cool day recently this bird found a warm spot beside the pumpkins drying on a sunny north-facing deck, and lay down stretching out its wings, first one and then the other. I could see that it was sunbaking, absorbing warmth with its dark feathers … but I wonder if it was also discouraging pests.
Here as another photo with the bird on fence …. pretty isn’t it? Our Wagtails are insect eaters, dashing around in the air with great agility, snapping up tasty morsels. Definitely to be encouraged!
Although the Willie Wagtail has a loud scolding ‘chit chit chit chit chit’ alarm call (like a child’s rattle), it also has a pleasant song that sounds like “sweet pretty little creature”. We love to see them around here, although they prefer farmland to bushland, so they are not frequent visitors.