A query about Eastern Spinebills

I am hoping the brains trust out there will help us to answer this. A friend has been observing Eastern Spinebills in her garden in the lower Blue Mountains for many years. She posed these question about their nesting habits:
> My observations on eastern spinebills’ nest-feathering has prompted me to ask more questions around “which came first :- the feather or the egg?”. When we first moved to the mountains in the early 1960’s, Sulphur-crested cockatoos were not seen regularly, & certainly not in the large flocks of today.
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> the Spinebill nest in our front hedge a few summers ago was completely lined with feathers, & more than 90 % of them were white. so I wonder if previously the Spinebills may have used other white birds’ feathers (like chooks??), or used a different coloured feather for the main nest-lining & side-walls. I also wonder if the abundance of available white feathers these days has stimulated successful nesting behaviour in Spinebills, & also of course if in areas where large white feathers are not available, the Spinebills breed at the same rate as the white-feather-nest-liners. Or if the whole white-feather-lining is just a localised behaviour, or just happened in our front yard once… it would be very interesting to hear any other observations, please.
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Julie Neumann
0247393063preferred. 0429130679



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