Anti-Caturday: The Butcher of Australasia

Grey Butcherbird by cskk
Grey Butcherbird by cskk

It appears that I’ve accidentally managed to stumble upon the most evil creature in existence, something that can give even Freddy Krueger a run for his money. And it looks exactly like a fuzzy, little songbird (well, sometimes it looks like a magpie). It is called a butcherbird and it is very aptly named. Although mostly they eat insects, they will also prey upon other vertebrates such as lizards and yes, other birds as well. They make their home in trees and bushes with especially big thorns and when they’ve been out hunting they bring the (sometimes still living) victim back home and impale it on one of the thorns, saving it for when it’s hungry.

But that’s not all folks! During mating season the male will gather a large collection of impaled corpses, more than it could possibly eat. It will then go off in search of a female. He will feed her and dance with her and then take her back to his place to inspect the corpse tree. If it’s gruesome enough for her they will then go off together and create another corpse tree, complete with nest.

Pied butcherbird by Tatters:)
Pied butcherbird by Tatters:)
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