Paul Ashford Harris

Belinda The Black Cockatoo

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Belinda The Black Cockatoo

Belinda the black cockatoo lived with her partner Henry in a eucalyptus forest that spread along the banks of a river in a valley winding between wheat farms and the rocky hill country. Every year Belinda and Henry returned to the same nest high in and old gum tree. It was built in a cosy hole, where a rotten branch had once broken off in a storm. Carefully lined with feathers and leaves, the nest was warm and safe.

Last year Belinda had laid one egg, which hatched into a healthy chick that soon grew up to join the flock of cockatoos. This year she and Henry were very excited. They had two eggs. Belinda sat on her eggs, waiting for them to hatch, while Henry searched for tasty eucalypt seeds and grains from the nearby farms. The eggs were close to hatching when their friend William the wallaby hopped by. “Belinda,” he called, “you must take care. Gerald the goanna is on the prowl looking for food and you know how much he likes to eat eggs. He’s coming this way now.”

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