Magnetic Island’s wildlife carer , irreverently dubbed the Queen of the Jungle by this blog , recovering from a knee operation, recently had cause to walk to the nearby upswept medical clinic , Latitude19Health , to see about a badly swollen finger. As she emerged from her residence , without the aid of a walking stick, she became aware that she was being followed – by the roaming , Dutch cheese eating Coucal she named Dracula .
Go away , she told him several times as she blazed a path through the bamboo and grassy track that runs by the Pope’s land . He took no notice of her instruction to fly away, just kept following close behind , like a dog. The Queen had visions of hobbling into the clinic followed by Dracula . She vigorously shooshed him away as the track neared a busy road , and he reluctantly stopped , but closely watched her walking off.
After seeing a doctor, the Queen came back along the track and there was Dracula waiting in a clump of bamboo . He followed her all the way home , crossing a road. As she paused to unlock her gate, Dracula flew off . On walking to the back of her house, there was Dracula , expecting some cheese.
Dracula has the habit of catching an insect, sometimes a grasshopper, and showing it to the Queen before munching it down . Once he dropped his catch and gave the Queen’s toe a hard bite , perhaps thinking it a chunk of Blue Vein, which might become infected and see her back at Latitude19Health with Dracula in tow.
This Dracula fan yesterday went to the Queen’s residence to pick the remainder of the feral pawpaws from the trees that had grown through her aviary. Dracula was strutting about her backyard and followed me lugging the ladder . He flew up onto the aviary and serenaded me with several loud Whoop! Whoops! Then he took up a cock of the walk pose , below , on the Queen’s clothesline .
FOOTNOTE: Dracula caught some grubs , showed them off to the Queen , and at one stage even hopped onto her shoulder and seemed to offer her one . Yuk!