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Queensland Birds

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The Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher  (Tanysiptera sylvia), nests in ground level termite mounds in the rainforest feeding their young chick inside the mound. Arriving from Papua New Guinea usually from mid October to early November, this bird species chooses a rainforest termite mound of the species Microcerotermes serratus. They have many mounds in the forest to choose from and don't always use the same one as the previous year. When they first arrive, they are difficult to see as they are often high up in the rainforest canopy selecting territories. This behavior usually lasts for a few weeks before they pair up and begin building their nests in termite mounds on the rainforest floor. Usually the female chooses a nest site. By this time it is December when egg laying usually takes place. Incubation period is 26-28 days and fledging period is a further 26-29 days, by then will be late February or early March. When the birds (both mum and dad) are feeding their young, they are more easily seen as they pounce on food items on the ground and come out into the open more readily. Once the fledglings emerge from the nest they tend to sit quietly in the rainforest waiting for their parents to bring food. After a further 32-33 days they are able to feed themselves. They depart for Papua New Guinea from March/April with the adult birds often leaving first followed by the youngsters. The latest departure have been recorded as late as early May. February to mid-April is probably the best time to see them but it is also the "Wet Season" so weather conditions are unpedictable.