About 9pm it seemed that something was upsetting the Curlews up near the back fence.Totter out of the recliner and go to investigate, turn on the outside light . Immediately one of the adults and one of the chicks are seen near the mandarin tree, but there is a lot of shrieking up in a dark corner . Go inside and get the torch, come out and the adult bird has disappeared , so has the chick. Walk towards the back flashing the torch and suddenly come upon a chick spread out , motionless, seemingly dead . Oh no. Poor little chicky. Bend down and pat it , no response . Shine the torch up close, bend down and make an inspection . What is that sticking out its beak? ... a lizard. Had it choked on its catch ? Pull out the lizard. Did not like the idea of applying mouth to beak. By this stage my wife had come outside and asked what was wrong . Looks as though the chick choked on a lizard, I announce, mournfully , in a CSI voice.
She says to pick up the chick and take it up the back where the parents are and see what happens . Take the lifeless bird , put it on the ground , give it a pat . The other chick makes a peep-peep sound ... and suddenly up jumps the lifeless one , standing about as tall as an emu , and sprints away to join the family.
There are times over the coming days when the fast growing chicks seem increasingly ungainly , unable to handle their long legs . Thus when they sit down and roll over on a side , they appear dead from a distance , causing concern .