A person whistling a dog? A descending trill? A piercing whistle that resonates in your eardrums? You might have heard some unusual bird calls over the last few weeks. It’s quite possible you are listening to one or two of the four species of cuckoo which have arrived in the Perth region recently. The above photo shows one of these: a Pallid Cuckoo (Cacomantis pallidus). This fella was perching on a fence at the edge of farmland just north of Perth, and I watched him zip down and grab a caterpillar a few times. I’ve heard this bird calling from several places around the hills too.
As with many birds, learning to their calls is often the best way to identify them. Have a listen to these recordings, and see if you can recognise one (or more) of them from your local area. Even better, next time you’re out gardening, pay attention to the different bird calls around your house. You might even find that you have cuckoos in your area!