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20100720Da_EL_008=_MG_10315_Grey_Butcherbird-showing-owl_defensive_pattern-Brisbane_Australia_EL+PS.tif
Grey Butcherbird shows owl pattern on takeoff, Brisbane Australia.   //   Grey Butcherbird: Artamidae (Cracticidae): Cracticus torquatus. Length to 32cm, wingspan to NNcm, weight to 100g. Widespread throughout Australia except for northern coastal areas, and inland west from Cairns in Queensland to Port Hedland in Western Australia. Occurs in open woodland, towns, and cities where it is a frequent visitor seeking food from humans. Ebullient, vigorous, aggressive, with rollicking calls characteristic of the dawn chorus. Feeds on a variety of arthropods, and smaller vertebrate prey that it may impale on a thorn or in a fork to hold it in place white it feeds. Here, as it takes off, a brief flash of an owl pattern - plump body, large head and two large eyes - may be enough to deter a predator approaching from behind for a fraction of a second and allow the bird to survive.   IUCN Status:   Least Concern.  //