A backyard tragedy / by Mario Mirabile

When I got home, Trish told me a fledgling wattle bird had fallen out of it's nest in one of our trees. It sat around squawking for attention as I got a few shots off. I was trying not to get too close, but it seemed completely unconcerned by my presence. It appeared healthy, and was able to fly short distances without getting too far off the ground, but certainty unable to fly back to its nest. 

Watching from a distance, the parents (assuming it was them)  were in a nearby tree, calling but not coming down. I offered it a couple of worms from the compost on the end of a stick, but it wasn't interested. Clearly a well bought up child, knowing not to accept treats from strangers. Eventually it flapped off behind the shed, and we flapped off to our dinner, hoping all would be well.

I had a quick look around the next morning before leaving for work, but saw no trace of it. Trish called later to say she'd found it dead near the shed. I hope our interest didn't scare off the parents, but I guess it's the usual fate of chicks in similar circumstances, either in the wild or in the back yard.