Birdingonthe.Net

Recent Postings from
The Australia Birding List

> Home > Mail
> Alerts

Updated on Monday, July 21 at 05:36 PM EST
The most recently received Mail is at the top.


Greater White-fronted Goose,©Barry Kent Mackay

21 Jul Pittas & Broadbills ["Geoffrey Allan Jones" ]
20 Jul The Ruff Knights - WA Twitchathon 2013 clip [Nigel Jackett ]
20 Jul Birding-Aus is hibernating [Russell Woodford ]
20 Jul Re: We were offline [Carl Clifford ]
20 Jul We were offline [Russell Woodford ]
19 Jul Re: Over-wintering Cuckoo's ? [martin cachard ]
19 Jul Over-wintering Cuckoo's ? [Chris Dahlberg ]
18 Jul Eaglehawk Pelagic Trip Report 13/07/2014 [Paul Brooks ]
18 Jul Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill [Michael Ramsey ]
18 Jul Re: Brolga [Jude Lattaway ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? [PennyDB ]
18 Jul Re: Brolga [Michael Tarburton ]
18 Jul Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill [Neville Schrader OAM ]
18 Jul Re: Good News for Aussie Swiftlets [Jude Lattaway ]
18 Jul Brolga [Jude Lattaway ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? ["Stephen Ambrose" ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? ["Experience the Wild" ]
18 Jul Re: Bird Atlas data RFI [Neil Shelley ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? ["Paul Doyle" ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? []
18 Jul Bird Atlas data RFI []
17 Jul Purple-crowned and Musk Lorikeets in Sept near Adelaide ["Donald G. Kimball" ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? [Andrew Taylor ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? [Denise Goodfellow ]
18 Jul Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? [Michael Tarburton ]
18 Jul Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter? [Alastair Silcock ]
18 Jul RFI - Paluma. [Jude Lattaway ]
18 Jul Good News for Aussie Swiftlets [Michael Tarburton ]
18 Jul Southport Pelagics. [Paul Walbridge ]
18 Jul Re: Scar tissue on P Currawong's legs ["calyptorhynchus ." ]
17 Jul Scar tissue on P Currawong's legs ["calyptorhynchus ." ]
17 Jul Ashmore October 2014 [John Weigel ]
17 Jul Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill [Tim Dolby ]
17 Jul Re: Ashmore Reef Oct 2014 [Chris Melrose ]
16 Jul Gawler near Adelaide vs Murray Bridge area for Rock and Elegant Parrots ["Donald G. Kimball" ]
17 Jul Ashmore Reef Oct 2014 [Jenny Spry ]
17 Jul Test 2 [Peter Shute ]
17 Jul Eastern Rosellas in Holt too ["John Layton" ]
17 Jul Test [Peter Shute ]
16 Jul Noosa National Park ["SeanDooley" ]
16 Jul Borneo take 2 ["Geoffrey Allan Jones" ]
16 Jul Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill ["Carl Weber" ]
16 Jul Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill [Neville Schrader OAM ]
16 Jul Borneo Part One ["Geoffrey Allan Jones" ]
16 Jul NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill [Tim Dolby ]
16 Jul Yellow Bittern ["Col and Chris Fitzell" ]
16 Jul Re: King Quail ["Ross Macfarlane" ]
16 Jul Re: (no subject) ["Philip Veerman" ]
16 Jul (no subject) ["david robertson" ]
16 Jul Re: Don't assume ["Stephen Ambrose" ]
16 Jul Re: RFI Visiting Darwin and Cairns-Brisbane: Chestnut Rail [Denise Goodfellow ]
16 Jul birds in Hawai'i [Denise Goodfellow ]
15 Jul RFI Visiting Darwin and Cairns-Brisbane [KEN TUCKER ]
15 Jul Re: Unusual cockatoo [Nikolas Haass ]
16 Jul Unusual cockatoo [Dave Torr ]
16 Jul Re: Don't assume [Denise Goodfellow ]
16 Jul Re: Don't assume [Denise Goodfellow ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume ["Green" ]
15 Jul Freckled Duck on the Atherton Tablelands + other sightings ["Alan Gillanders" ]
15 Jul King Quail [James Mustafa ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume [Allan Richardson ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume [Denise Goodfellow ]
15 Jul Southern Cassowary [Jude Lattaway ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume [brian fleming ]
15 Jul Re: RFI Pokolbin [Youngs FamilyMail ]
15 Jul Re: Japan: Advice needed ["Jenny Stiles" ]
15 Jul Re: Japan: Advice needed ["Jenny Stiles" ]
15 Jul Pacific Black Duck ID ["Els and Bill" ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume [Denise Goodfellow ]
15 Jul Re: Yellow Bittern at North Lakes as a sociological study; any apologies to Sandra? [Denise Goodfellow ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume ["Tony Russell" ]
15 Jul Re: Don't assume [Denise Goodfellow ]
15 Jul Don't assume [Russell Woodford ]
15 Jul Re: Ken Simpson ["Tony Russell" ]
14 Jul Re: Yellow Bittern at North Lakes [Russell Woodford ]
14 Jul Re: Cats and Dogs [David Clark ]

Subject: Pittas & Broadbills
From: "Geoffrey Allan Jones" <gjo48414 AT bigpond.net.au>
Date: Mon, 21 Jul 2014 17:27:45 +1000
Good Evening Everyone My main reason for going to Sabah Borneo was to try
and photograph as many of the Pittas and Broadbills as possible as my long
term goal is to photograph all of them, I have been informed over the
weekend that there is a paper which has split the Red-bellied Pitta into 16
species taking the number to 46 so I hope I am still fit enough to keep on
crawling thru rainforests among the Leeches and other critters to reach my
goal. Here is a link to this album plus some non-birds for a change.

http://tinyurl.com/lltdaqz

Regards Geoff Jones

 



---
This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection 
is active. 

http://www.avast.com
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: The Ruff Knights - WA Twitchathon 2013 clip
From: Nigel Jackett <nigel.jackett AT gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 20 Jul 2014 20:14:29 +0800
Hi everyone,

For those interested, I've put together a short clip of our 2013
twitchathon run from the Pilbara to Perth, using some footage from a GoPro
and iPhone.

http://youtu.be/2INfG-VNWGM

Cheers,

Nigel
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Birding-Aus is hibernating
From: Russell Woodford <rdwoodford AT gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 20 Jul 2014 21:49:17 +1000
Hi everyone

Not sure if this message will get through, but we have run into some major
problems with my web host, who has a limit of 200 emails per hour.
Birding-Aus has over 1140 subscribers, so it's possible we go over that
limit every time someone sends a message!

I am trying to get some answers, but for the meantime, there won't be much
activity. I will let everyone know the outcome as soon as possible. It
might mean we change servers again and the list address will look something
like birding-aus AT lists.birding-aus.org

Or we might end up just having a web forum.

Please don't reply via the list. If you need to contact me do so at
rdwoodford AT gmail.com

Hope to be back in full flight as soon as possible (and without any more
terrible bird puns)

Russell Woodford
Birding-Aus Owner (I think)
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: We were offline
From: Carl Clifford <carlsclifford AT gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 20 Jul 2014 13:59:40 +1000
Hi Russ,

Thanks for all the hard work getting BA back on it's legs again.

Carl Clifford

> On 20 Jul 2014, at 12:53, Russell Woodford  wrote:
> 
> Hi everyone
> 
> This mailing list was offline because something on my website or server
> space was hacked, and started generating floods of spam. Hopefully none of
> you got any - apologies if you did. What it meant was that everything to do
> with birding-aus was suspended and the host cleaned up all directories and
> removed several suspicious looking trojans.
> 
> Hopefully now we will have a cleaner and leaner birding-aus. I'll probably
> turn off message delivery to our website, as well as image uploading. You
> will still be able to read messages via your own email, or via the archives
> for those who prefer to read it that way.
> 
> Thanks for your patience - although nobody really had any choice about
> that!!
> 
> Russell Woodford
> Biridng-Aus Owner
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: We were offline
From: Russell Woodford <rdwoodford AT gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 20 Jul 2014 12:53:09 +1000
Hi everyone

This mailing list was offline because something on my website or server
space was hacked, and started generating floods of spam. Hopefully none of
you got any - apologies if you did. What it meant was that everything to do
with birding-aus was suspended and the host cleaned up all directories and
removed several suspicious looking trojans.

Hopefully now we will have a cleaner and leaner birding-aus. I'll probably
turn off message delivery to our website, as well as image uploading. You
will still be able to read messages via your own email, or via the archives
for those who prefer to read it that way.

Thanks for your patience - although nobody really had any choice about
that!!

Russell Woodford
Biridng-Aus Owner
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Over-wintering Cuckoo's ?
From: martin cachard <mcachard AT hotmail.com>
Date: Sat, 19 Jul 2014 07:51:55 +1030
hi Chris & others,
 
in my experience, seeing channel-bills up in the Wet Tropics during winter is 
something that I don't even take much note of these days - every year since 
1996 when I moved here from Melb, I have recorded them in the region between 
May-July, so it would seem that a small proportion of birds stay here - not in 
any huge numbers though, just the odd bird or 3... 

I have seen 1st year birds & adults here during those months too, so it's not 
an age related issue - i'd imagine like most migratory species, a few 
individuals don't return to their wintering grounds every year... 

 
also, up here Brush Cuckoos are resident all year & i'd consider them 
non-migrants up here... 

 
cheers,
martin cachard,
cairns
 

 
> From: chrisld71 AT gmail.com
> Date: Sat, 19 Jul 2014 07:06:52 +1000
> To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] Over-wintering Cuckoo's ?
> 
> I too saw a Channel-billed Cuckoo at Daintree Village recently (8 July) and 
yesterday (18 July) had a Brush Cuckoo calling at Wonga Beach. 

> 
> Channel-billed Cuckoos have overwintered here before but because Brush Cuckoo 
was calling I suspect it is an early migrant. 

> I havenít heard the Brush Cuckoo this morning.
> 
> Our latitude is 16 degrees south.
> 
> cheers
> 
> Chris Dahlberg
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
 		 	   		  
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Over-wintering Cuckoo's ?
From: Chris Dahlberg <chrisld71 AT gmail.com>
Date: Sat, 19 Jul 2014 07:06:52 +1000
I too saw a Channel-billed Cuckoo at Daintree Village recently (8 July) and 
yesterday (18 July) had a Brush Cuckoo calling at Wonga Beach. 


Channel-billed Cuckoos have overwintered here before but because Brush Cuckoo 
was calling I suspect it is an early migrant. 

I havenít heard the Brush Cuckoo this morning.

Our latitude is 16 degrees south.

cheers

Chris Dahlberg
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Eaglehawk Pelagic Trip Report 13/07/2014
From: Paul Brooks <theleadboots AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 22:03:42 +1000
Report from last Sunday's trip.  Looking forward to reading about what this
weekend's trips turn up after the strong southerlies off SE Tas over the
last couple of days.


Eaglehawk Pelagic Trip Report 13/07/2014


Participants: Kevin Bartram, Ian Halliday, JJ Harrison, Martin Havlicek,
Scott Linnane, Michael Vaughan, Peter Vaughan, George Vaughan, Els
Wakefield, John Weigel and Paul Brooks (organiser & report compiler)



Boat: The Pauletta, skippered by John Males, with deckhand Adam.



Conditions: A cold, gusty wind in the bay had us expecting a bumpy ride but
the seas were quite benign out to the Hippolyte and the journey to the
shelf was also fairly smooth with very little spray.  None seasick.  Swell
was around 2 metres with seas generally below 2 metres for much of the
morning.  Winds were south-westerly at 15 knots.  As we moved south, the
swell increased to around 2.5 metres; after midday, seas increased to 3
metres as the south-westerly picked up with some gusts to 25 knots.  The
day turned out to be fairly fine with none of the possible showers.  Water
temperature was 13.9 deg C inshore, rising to 15 deg C out wide.



Activity:  Departed Pirates Bay at 0730 hrs and headed south to
circumnavigate the Hippolytes before heading east to the shelf (after an
almost birdless trip over offshore waters).  After a brief stop, over 600
fathoms, we headed south to berley over 750 fathoms.  We drifted
north-easterly from this point for the rest of the day before heading back
to port to dock at around 1510 hrs.



Mammals:

Australian Fur Seal: c. 12 on the Hippolyte.

New Zealand Fur Seal: 1 male on the Hippolyte.



Other:

Blue Shark: 2 in pelagic waters.



Birds (IOC v 4.2, max at one time in brackets):



Antipodean Albatross: 2 (1) Both pelagic.  One bird had a fairly dark cap,
which the other bird lacked.



Southern Royal Albatross: 4 (3) All pelagic.



Black-browed Albatross: 1 An adult bird in pelagic waters.



Black-browed-type Albatross: 1 A juvenile which was only seen briefly.



Campbell Albatross: 3 (2) Two adults and one immature bird, all in pelagic
waters.



Shy Albatross: c. 80 (31) Only a handful in inshore and offshore waters but
common off the shelf.



Buller’s Albatross: 8 (4) Five birds inshore and offshore and three or four
that followed the boat around off the shelf.



Northern Giant Petrel: 3 (2) Two juveniles that arrived early on and hung
around and an adult that arrived towards the end of the day.



BLUE PETREL: 2 (2) A single bird flew in from the south and shot past
before turning around and disappearing from where it appeared.  Not long
after it, or another bird, was back and dancing in the slick just at the
back of the boat.  A second bird materialised and they both proceeded to
give excellent views for the next ten minutes or so.  One of the birds
followed the boat for a short way as we motored for home.



SLENDER-BILLED PRION: 1 (1) Flew in from the south and stopped in the
slick, just out of range of decent views.  Disappeared for a short while
before reappearing and foraging in the slick at the back of the boat, a
little closer than previously.



Great-winged Petrel: 16 (6) All pelagic.  Largely absent until later on,
when several birds began to appear from the south.



White-headed Petrel: 8 (1) All pelagic.  Mainly flying from the south.  A
few birds seemed inquisitive and made close passes of the boat.



GREY PETREL: 1 Pelagic.  Made a couple of passes of the boat.



Sooty Shearwater: 3 (2) Pelagic.



Grey-backed Storm Petrel: 1 Pelagic.



Common Diving Petrel: 6 (1) Four inshore and offshore, two in pelagic
waters.



Australasian Gannet: 9 (2) All inshore apart from a couple in pelagic
waters.



Black-faced Cormorant: 8 (3) All inshore.



White-faced Heron: 2 (1) The Hippolyte.



Silver Gull: 5 (2) Inshore.



Pacific Gull: 6 (2) All adults between Pirate’s Bay and the Hippolytes,
except for one juvenile which followed the boat with the Kelp Gulls.



Kelp Gull: 27 (12) All inshore.  Had a dozen or so birds follow the boat
between Pirate’s Bay and the Hippolytes, which is unusual.



Greater Crested Tern: 42 (c.30) Mainly inshore, including a flock of around
thirty foraging near the Hippolyte.



PB
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
From: Michael Ramsey <mickramsey AT hotmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 21:07:42 +1000
There are also historical records of Glossy Blacks in the Warby Ranges in NE 
Vic, the last around the early 90s. It could be feasible that these birds came 
from further north towards Naranderra and Cocoparra. 


Sent from my iPhone

> On 18 Jul 2014, at 17:34, "Neville Schrader OAM"  
wrote: 

> 
> 
> Hi Tim,
> 
>          The big problem I think in assessing if the Glossy ever occurred
> south of the Murrumbidgee/ Murray is habitat and possible competition from
> the endangered Victorian population of the Red-tailed black Cockatoo and
> possibly identification.  Llewellyn (Emu. 1974) looked at the historical
> records for the two species of black cockatoos believed to occur in the
> riverine in his paper. He was able to prove that the only black cockatoo
> with a red tail was the glossy. An the reports of Red-tailed Black Cockatoos
> ( C. banksii) were errors in identifications.  Historical records should be
> treated with caution especially as relates to locations and identifications.
> Additional care is also  required in interpretation of historical records in
> relation to locations where specimens were collected. From what I've read
> there appears have been a fair trade in specimens.
> 
> Food is all important and luckily areas where verticillata grows is not good
> faming land (at least in NSW) which is probably why a  reasonable population
> and distribution still exist in this state.  I think it is reasonable to
> assume that the distribution of verticillata is possibly a good indication
> of what the Glossy BC may have been. Thus fits your Mallacoota theory is
> plausable as they would have available habitat and a food source, especially
> when considering the distribution of verticillata along the Victorian Coast.
> At what period the two populations( Kangaroo Is and Victorian)  became
> isolated due to climate change or habitat loss is an interesting question.
> The other interesting question is if habitat was available would the species
> recolonise.
> 
> I think the White-browed Scrubwren is a good example of a species which has
> split into a number of races/subspecies due to population isolation, though
> Tasmania is possible the best example.
> 
> All very interesting, gets the grey matter working.
> 
> Regards
> 
> Neville
> -----Original Message----- From: Tim Dolby
> Sent: Thursday, July 17, 2014 6:09 PM
> To: Neville Schrader OAM
> Cc: birding-aus
> Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, 
Pulletop and Galore Hill 

> 
> Really interesting to hear your comments about the Riverina Glossy 
Black-Cockatoo Neville, thanks - especially your thought about them being not 
be as isolated as some think. It’s been noted that they can move over 
considerable distances so, yes, the movement between places such as West 
Wyalong and Narrandera is not be out of the equation. 

> 
> In terms of the Kangaroo Island birds, I’d always thought they were linked 
to the east coast birds, around Mallacoota. The reason for their isolation was 
loss of habitat along the South Australian and Victorian coast. However, if 
they are capable of traveling long distances, perhaps in good years they may 
have moved also the river systems, along the Murrumbidgee and the Murray River, 
n to coastal SA. I’d be interested to know if there were any historical 
records between the Riverina and Kangeroo Island? I can’t find any. I suppse 
another option is that they were isolated (along with a number of other 
species) at the end of the Pleistocene, approx. 10,000 years ago, when the 
water levels dropped in the Murray Basin, changing the landscape in between. 

> 
> Cheers,
> 
> Tim
> 
> ________________________________________
> From: Neville Schrader OAM [nschrader AT bigpond.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 8:09 PM
> To: Tim Dolby
> Cc: birding-aus
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, 
Pulletop and Galore Hill 

> 
> Hi Tim,
> 
>            As you, the distribution of the Riverina population of the
> Glossy Black Cockatoo, has intrigued me for some time.
> I've come to the conclusion that the Riverina population is probably not as
> isolated as literature would suggest.  If you look at records in bird
> reports, over the
> last 30 years, it becomes clear that there is no barrier and if you compare
> the distribution of Allocasuarina verticillataa a picture starts to emerge.
> 
> Bob Miller a beekeeper from I think Griffith or Leeton, who travelled
> extensively in central NSW ( meet him when I lived at Ivanhoe in the 1970
> introduced by John Hobbs) observed them at a large number of locations,
> (unfortunately I'm not aware what happened to his records), but he observed
> the species on isolated ranges, mountains and ridges with populations of
> verticillata broadly from Nymagee to Narrandera, including places like Mt
> Hope, Tottenham, down to Narrandera.
> 
> I think Bob published a paper in Australian Birds back in the 70's.
> Llewellyn also published a paper in the Emu on the confusion between the two
> species red tailed black cockatoos in the Riverina and he put foreword the
> theory on the relationship with the Kangaroo Island population. I've seen
> nothing since. Christidis and Boles makes no comment.
> 
> Besides the locations you mention in recent years, Glossy Black's have been
> recorded from Trangie, Tottenham, West Wyalong, Back Creek SF east of Wyong,
> south end of Lake Cowal. From this site you can see the Weddin Mtns, not an
> unreasonable distance to travel for a bird of this size.
> 
> They have also been observed by local landholders ( confirmed by the fact
> they were feeding on She-oaks) at Bogan Gate west of Parkes, Gobondery
> Range, Albert and Bogan R. near Peak Hill (Minore, Hervey Range, Bumberry
> Nangar, Conimba etc are east of these
> locations, all which have populations of Glossy's). The Goonoo Goonoo
> SF/Conservation area also holds a good population and is in flying distance,
> I would suggest.
> 
> I've always considered there is a couple of ridges west of Mt. Hope that
> would be worth investigating, but dirt roads and isolation
> is a problem. As is some of ridges between Hillston and Lake Cargelligo
> worth a look at.
> 
> I guess as more birdwatchers travel west and the roads improve the
> distribution of the Glossy Black Cockatoo will become clearer, but until
> then the  "urban myth". will continue with the distribution of the Glossy
> black Cockatoo and the isolated population.
> 
> By the way a good report brings back some memories.
> 
> Good Birding
> 
> Neville Schrader
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tim Dolby
> Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 3:12 PM
> To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough,
> Pulletop and Galore Hill
> 
> Hi everyone, for something to do I've written up a trip/bird/plant report
> for the Riverina - an area that I've been spending quite a bit of time in
> recently.  The full report with some images is also on my website at
> http://tim-dolby.blogspot.com.au. If you do get around to reading it, I hope
> you like it!
> 
> Cheers,
> 
> Tim Dolby
> _______________________
> 
> Birding the Riverina - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
> 
> The following report covers some birdwatching locations in the Riverina,
> including Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest, Fivebough Wetland,
> Leeton and Tuckerbil Wetland, Pulletop Nature Reserve and Galore Hill Nature
> Reserve. I've visited most of these sites about half a dozen times, so this
> report is a bit of a rundown of those experiences, plus a bit of background
> knowledge thrown in.
> 
> In 1817 John Oxley, the first Europeans to visit the region, wrote in his
> journal "the weather as usual fine and clear, which is the greatest comfort
> we enjoy in these deserts, abandoned as they seem to be by every living
> creature capable of getting out of them." How wrong he was - from a
> birdwatching and wildlife point of view, the Riverina is a seriously
> under-estimated birding destination. By contrast with Oxley views, when
> early settler Henry Osborne climbed to the top of Galore Hill in 1847 he
> shouted "There's land enough and galore for me". Galore is an Irish word
> that means plenty. This was perhaps a bad omen in terms of the clearing of
> native vegetation, however it does show that the Riverina is an area of
> contrasts, certainly in terms of its habitats, and it appeals to different
> people.
> 
> One reason I’ve written this report is because a lot of Australian birders
> travel to northern Victoria, visiting places such as Chiltern-Mt Pilot
> National Park and Barmah National Park but seem to stop at the Murray River.
> This may be because there's relatively little information about bird sites
> just north of the Murray, so here’s my own personal rundown of these 
places. 

> 
> For a while the Riverina was a popular destination for birdwatchers, due
> mainly to the Australian Birdfair, which was held each year in Leeton.
> Fantastically organised by Mike Schultz, unfortunately this event hasn’t
> taken place since 2011, and a new Australian Bird Fair has started in
> Sydney's Olympic Park. In many ways it's a great shame, I attended the
> Leeton Birdfair in 2010 (or was it 2009?) and it was fabulous! There was a
> great program, it was organised by some great people, and it was in a great
> location.
> 
> The Riverina is a also great stop over site, stop there when you're heading
> to Round Hill Nature Reserve and Lake Cargelligo, stop there if you're
> heading from Melbourne to Brisbane (and beyond) or vice versa, and stop
> there if you're heading from Sydney to Adelaide or vice versa.
> 
> Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest
> The main site I want to concentrate on is Cocoparra National Park (8358 ha)
> and the adjacent Binya State Forest (4170 ha), mainly because they are both
> a rare woodland remnant, and they are a bit of a jewel in the Riverina
> crown. I've visited these parks a number of  times; there's some dramatic
> scenery, rocky outcrops and, in places, the rich red soils contrast
> wonderfully with the greens of the trees, particularly the native pines.
> 
> First gazetted as a national park in 1969, Cocoparra National Park is
> located 20 km east of Griffith on the Burley Griffin Way. When I've visited
> I've pitched a tent at the excellent Woolshed Flat camp ground, or visited
> from Leeton. As with most national parks bush camping is also permitted away
> from roads and facilities. The Cocoparra Range is part of the traditional
> lands of the Wiradjuri nation, and there are ~60 known Aboriginal sites,
> mainly open campsites and scarred trees.
> 
> Wattle Drive - note my parking style! Lesson 1: car parking technique for
> birdwatchers, follow these steps. See what you think is an unusual bird,
> stop quickly in the middle of the track and leave your car door wide open
> (this is important), and then walk off aimlessly looking for the mystery
> bird. Ultimately you want to repeat these steps as much as is respectfully
> possible.
> 
> Cocoparra's plants
> Before talking about the birds, I thought I spend sometime writing about the
> great plants at Cocoparra and Binya. With over 450 species recorded, these
> are linked to different habitat types, each species varying according to
> soil type.
> 
> On the Ridges
> Cocoparra is a series of ranges, with exposed rough exposed rocks. On the
> high ridges you'll find Black Cypress-pine (Callitris endlicheri), Dwyer’s
> Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri), Currawang (Acacia sparsiflora), Green
> Tea-Tree (Leptospermum trivalve), and there's some heathland dominated by
> Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata), areas where it's worth looking for Shy
> Heathwren.
> 
> The Slopes
> In the dry sclerophyll forest on the rising foot and midslopes you find
> native pines such as Black (Callitris endlicheri) and White Cypress-pine (C.
> glaucophylla) and Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Eucalypts
> here include Dwyer's Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus Dwyeri), Mugga Ironbark (E.
> sideroxylon), Red Stringybark (E. macrorhyncha), Grey Box (E. microcarpa)
> and the wonderful Bimble Box (E. ucalyptus populnea), with it's glossy and
> rounded dark green leaves. This particular habitat mix is considered to be
> regionally endangered ‚Äď with less than 10% remaining of its original
> extent - and is also the habitat type that supports locally endangered
> Glossy Black-Cockatoo (discussed below).
> 
> Wattles on the slopes includes Currawong (Acacia doratoxylon), Yarran (A.
> homalophylla), Currawang (A. sparsiflora), Deane's Wattle (A. deanei) and
> Boree (A. pendula), while other trees here include Kurrajong (Brachychiton
> populneum), Rosewood (Heterodendrum oleifolium) and Cherry Ballart
> (Exocarpos cupressiformis).
> 
> When I visited Cocoparra just a few weeks ago the slopes were covered in
> Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana). A spectacular climber with large
> white-light red tube flowers about 15mm long, it's a close relative of the
> Bower Vine (Pandorea jasmanoides) grown as a garden plant.. These flowers
> cascaded from the tops of shrubs and trees along the Mt Brogden walk.
> Pandorea pandorana seems to be a highly variable species, for instance in
> other places that I've seen them they've flowered in Spring. However, here
> at Cocoparra this year they were flowering profusely mid-winter.
> 
> The Woodlands
> In the open grassy woodlands, and along the parks rocky creek lines and
> sheltered gullies, you can find Blakely's Red Gum (Eucalyptus blakelyi),
> Yellow Box (E. melliodora)  Dwyer's Mallee Gum (E. Dwyeri), Red Stringybark
> (E. macrorhyncha), Bimble Box (E. populnea) and
> 
> Shrubs and Herbs Ground cover is normally sparse but after rain all the
> grasses and herbs come to life - look for Oval-leaf or Purple Mintbush
> (Prostanthera ovalifolia), Curry Bush (Cassinia laevis), Sticky Everlasting
> (Xerochrysum viscosum), Rusty Spider-Flower (Grevillea floribunda), Common
> Fringe-myrtle (Calytrix tetragona), Grey Guinea Flower (Hibbertia
> obtusifolia), Nodding Blue Lily (Stypandra glauca), Smooth Flax Lily
> (Dianella laevis), Urn Heath (Melichrus urceolatus), Australian Bluebell
> (Wahlenbergia stricta) and Sandhill Goodenia (Goodenia willisiana). Native
> daisies include Cut-leaved Daisy (Brachyscome multifida), Variable Daisy (B.
> ciliaris) and Showy Daisy (B. ciliocarpa), while the tussock grasses are
> Spear Grass (Austrostipa nodosa), Variable Spear Grass (Stipa variabilis)
> and Wallaby Grass (Danthonia linkii).
> 
> There are a few rare plants occurring in the park. This includes Cocoparra
> Pomaderris (Pomaderris cocoparrana), which is confined to rocky higher
> altitudes areas in the Cocoparra Ranges - it's easily recognised by its
> ovate leaves with a green upper surface and velvety, grey under surface, and
> a bright yellow flowers in spring. It was once thought to be the more
> widespread Pomaderris andromedifolia, until it was revealed to be distinct
> separate species. Other rare plants include Club-leafed or Dainty Phebalium
> (Phebalium obcordatum) and Irongrass (Lomandra patens).
> 
> Cocoparra's mammals and reptiles
> In terms of native mammals in the park, Cocoparra is a bit of refuge. I've
> seen Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), both Eastern (Macropus giganteus) and
> Western Grey Kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), Red Kangaroo (M. rufus), Black
> (Swamp) Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), while Red-necked Wallaby (M.
> rufrogriseus) have been recorded near Cocoparra but not in the park itself -
> probably the most westerly population for this species in the NSW.
> 
> Smaller mammals in the park remain largely elusive. There are Brushtail
> Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) and the diurnal Yellow-footed Antechinus
> (Antechinus flavipes), both relatively common. Most other small mammals are
> known only by their remains identified in owl pellets, such as Rattus sp.,
> i.e. Bush Rat (Rattus fuscipes), Bandicoot (Isoodon sp.) and native mice
> (Pseudomys sp.). Eight species of bat have been recorded, the most common
> being the White-striped Mastiff bat (Tadarida australis) as well as the
> vulnerable Eastern Long-eared Bat (Nyctophilus timoriensis). Feral animals
> in the park include Cat, Fox, Goat (quite common, estimated numbers to be
> ~2000, I’ve seen them on virtually every walks I’ve done), Rabbit and 
I’ve 

> seen signs of wild Pig.
> 
> There is a variety of reptiles in the park, notably the Nobbi Dragon
> (Amphibolurus nobbi) and the Tree Crevice-skink or Tree Skink (Egernia
> striolata). Both occur in the rocky areas along the Mt Brogden walk. The
> Nobbi Dragon is similar to a Jacky Lizard (A. muricatus), but has a
> distinctive stripe along its backs which is often pale-coloured or even
> yellow, while the best place to look for Tree Skink is on the trunk of a
> large eucalypt that have peeling loose bark and is surrounded by piles of
> rocks, broken branches, dead leaves and some decaying hollow logs. Other
> reptiles include Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbatus), Lace Monitor (Varanus
> varius), Wood Gecko (Diplodactylus vittatus) and Mulga Snake (Pseudechis
> australis).
> 
> The birds and bird sites
> Cocoparra and Binya were classified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife
> International, mainly because it supports a relatively large populations of
> the near threatened Painted Honeyeater (the highest number of birds recorded
> at one site at one time was 22) and contains Diamond Firetail. While it
> always great to see these two species, Cocoparra has many other birding
> attractions. For instance you can target birds such as Glossy
> Black-Cockatoo, White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, Black-eared
> Cuckoo, Striped Honeyeater, Turquoise Parrot as well as the wonderful mallee
> parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot and Blue Bonnet - here
> it's the yellow-vented ssp. haematogaster. In "good years" Cocoparra
> attracts birds such as Cockatiel, Budgerigar, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo,
> Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater. It's also always nice to see Splendid and
> Variegated Fairy-wren, nice raptors in the area include Spotted Harrier and
> Black and Peregrine Falcon and, at night, I've heard Spotted Nightjar.
> 
> The roadside native pines along Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route
> Rd is a good place to look for White-browed Treecreeper. They are quite
> active while foraging on the rough trunks of Belah, Buloke and native
> pines - listen for their trilled, cricket-like chirrup call, especially
> during the breeding season. Along the Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock
> Route Road there are also scattered area of Bimble Box (Eucalyptus populnea)
> which tend to be covered in Dropping Mistletoe (Amyema pendula). In late
> spring and summer this is the place to look here for Painted Honeyeater -
> like the White-browed Treecreeper, there call is distinctive, a loud
> georgi - georgi. I've also seen Spotted Harrier alongside the Whitton Stock
> Route Road.
> 
> Forestry Hut
> The Forestry Hut is one of the least known birding site in Binya. It's
> located on the southern side of the Burley Griffin Way, approx 200m east of
> the Whitton Stock Route intersection (-34.242500, 146.237778). Access is via
> Pine Drive - it may be impassable in wet conditions, but you can easily walk
> in. This is another good spot to look for White-browed Treecreeper, and it
> can be a great birding spot generally, especially during spring flowering.
> This is the only area that I've see Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater, and
> here I've also seen Hooded Robin, White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Mulga
> Parrot, Blue Bonnet, and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren.
> 
> Wattle Dam and Moss Dam
> Cocoparra and Binya hold NSW's most westerly populations of Turquoise
> Parrot. A good spot to look for them is around Wattle Dam and Moss Dam,
> particularly in the mornings. Both located off Barry Scenic Drive (an
> excellent 2WD road). Aside from the Turqs, around these dams you can also
> see Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot, Rainbow Bee-eater, Variegated and
> Splendid Fairy-wren, Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeater, Inland,
> Chestnut-rumped and Yellow Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella,
> Apostlebird and Bar-shouldered Dove - the south-western-most population for
> this species.
> 
> Spring Hill and Falcon Falls
> The Spring Hill Picnic Area can be teeming with birds, particularly when
> there are mixed-species flocks about. Here there's a chance of seeing
> Turquoise Parrot, as well as Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Brown
> Treecreeper, Grey-crowned Babbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater,
> Speckled Warbler, Yellow and Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Western Gerygone,
> Jacky Winter, Hooded Robin, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch.
> 
> From the picnic area take the walk to Falcon Falls, where the scenery is
> spectacular. These falls are appropriately named after Peregrine Falcon,
> which breed on the cliffs in the area. Here there are also occasional
> sightings of Glossy Black-Cockatoo.
> 
> Binya Forest Drive
> The habitat along the Binya Forest Drive is dominated by native pines - it's
> worth stopping where ever you see birdlife. It's particularly good for
> parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Blue Bonnet, and Turquoise, Mulga and
> Red-rumped Parrot. Along this drive I've also seen Striped Honeyeater,
> Speckled Warbler, Crested Bellbird, Splendid Fairy-wren, Brown and
> White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, and also heard Painted
> Honeyeater. This area is probably the best spot to look for Gilbert’s
> Whistler.
> 
> Note: that the Binya Forest Drive may be impassable in wet conditions. Also
> note that the the Parakeet Drive connects the Binya Forest Drive and Barry
> Scenic Drive.
> 
> Mt Brogden and Glossy Black-Cockatoo
> One of the best places to look for Glossy Black-Cockatoo is along the Mt
> Brogden walking track.  This is the endangered Riverina population of Glossy
> Black-Cockatoo, birds that are largely restricted to hills and low ridges
> with areas of Drooping She-Oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Glossy
> Black-Cockatoo then need suitable large hollows in Grey Box (Eucalyptus
> microcarpa) or Dwyer's Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri). Unfortunately much of this
> type of habitat has been cleared and is fragmented.
> 
> The social and conservation context of the Glossy Black-Cockatoo in the
> Riverina intrigues me. As a population they are disjunct from other Glossy
> Black-Cockatoo in NSW, and it now seems that the genetic link to the nearest
> easterly NSW birds is uncertain. Indeed there is some evidence that the
> Riverina birds are more closely related to the Kangaroo Island subspecies
> halmaturinus - only a mere 1000 km away - which is remarkable! The fact that
> the Riverina Glossy Black-Cockatoo are isolated and that they may be linked
> to the Kangaroo Island birds indicates that this population has a very
> significant conservation value.
> 
> [Note: If you don't see Glossy Black-Cockatoo in Cocoparra National Park,
> they've also been recorded in the Narrandera Range, Brobenah Hills,
> McPhersons Range, Galore Hill, Lachlan Range, Naradhan Range, Jimberoo State
> Forest and Gap Dam State Forest.]
> 
> Mt Brogden is also one of the few spots in Cocoparra where Chestnut
> Quail-thrush have been recorded, which may be present in the park in small
> numbers - aside from that, the nearest population of Chestnut Quail-thrush
> is said to be Loughnan Nature Reserve near Hillston and the bird at Round
> Hill and Nombinnie.
> 
> Store Creek and Jack Creek Walking Tracks
> The Store Creek walking track begins at the picnic area and walks you
> through a nice section of Cypress Pine and Bimble Box. It ends at stunning
> natural amphitheatre formed by the junction of two creeks. It's a good track
> to look for Crested Bellbird, Red-capped Robin, Speckled Warbler, Striped
> and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow and Inland Thornbill,
> Splendid Fairy-wren, Double-barred Finch and Diamond Firetail. In spring,
> I've seen Black-eared Cuckoo, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow and
> Western Gerygone here.
> 
> I've seen similar birds along the equally spectacular Jack Creek walking
> track - it a vast gorge, walk through some gullies and exposed ridges to
> three lookouts that provide views of the gorge. One of the features of the
> Jack Creek picnic area is that White-winged Chough nest above the picnic
> tables.
> 
> Woolshed Flat
> There's a very pleasant camping area at Woolshed Flat. Around the  campsite
> and in the surrounding bush I've seen Emu, Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck,
> Blue Bonnet, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, Yellow-plumed and Blue-faced
> Honeyeater, Noisy and Little Friarbird, Speckled Warbler, Southern
> Whiteface,  Dusky Woodswallow, Restless Flycatcher, Pallid Cuckoo, Rainbow
> Bee-eater, White-winged Trilller, Western Gerygone, Restless Flycatcher, and
> Rufous Songlark, and thornills such as Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow, and
> Yellow-rumped. I've not seen them, but there are occasional sightings of
> Major Mitchell's Cockatoo around Woolshed.
> 
> At night I've heard Spotted Nightjar, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, Southern
> Boobook, and Tawny Frogmouth - the frogmouth here are the central
> Australian/dry country ssp. brachypterus.
> 
> Fivebough Wetland
> A fantastic and very large Ramsar-listed wetland, Fivebough Wetland (400 ha)
> is a must visit place when passing through the area. With an impressive one
> hundred and eighty species recorded, including eighty waterbird species,
> you'd be stupid not to stop! The main car park is about 2 km north-east of
> Leeton's town centre on Petersham Rd (-34.535624, 146.420576). It's a
> surprisingly small car park for such a large reserve, so don't blink or
> you'll miss it. Leeton has a range of accommodation options - but if you're
> looking for somewhere interesting to stay, I've found that a particular good
> place is the grand Historic Hydro Motor Inn; despite the name, it's actually
> a grand old motel. The restaurant at the Inn is called the Freckled Duck -
> and no, before you ask, duck wasn't on the menu!
> 
> The birding around the car park, and the nearby planted section of gums, is
> surprisingly good - I've found Little Friarbird, Yellow-throated Miner,
> Singing and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow-rumped
> Thornbill, Weebill, Western Gerygone, Striated Pardalote and Zebra Finch.
> 
> The 5 km of walking trails begin from the car park, and lead to a number of
> viewing mounds and two excellent bird hides. The track first takes you to
> along All Weather Walking Trail to the Bittern bird hide. Along the first
> section of reeds, I've occasionally seen Brown Quail feeding in the grassy
> fringes of the track.
> 
> This bird hide overlooks a portion of wetland specifically managed for the
> relatively rare Australasian Bittern: in season, their presence may be
> revealed by their repeated booming call, heard mainly at night. There is
> also a chance of Australian Little Bittern.
> 
> From the Bittern bird hide, and the nearby viewing area, you may also see
> Glossy Ibis, Magpie Goose, Brolga, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel,
> Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and Black-tailed Native-hen. It's
> always worth scanning the exposed muddy edges for Baillon’s, Australian
> Spotted and Spotless Crake.
> 
> A range of summer shorebirds visit the wetland, such as Latham’s Snipe,
> Black-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Wood, Marsh and Sharp-tailed
> Sandpiper, and Red-necked Stint, and look out for Whiskered and White-winged
> Black Tern, White throated Needletail and Fork-tailed Swift. Rarities
> recorded at the wetland include Little Curlew, Pectoral Sandpiper, Long-toed
> Stint and Oriental Pratincole.
> 
> The shire council’s sewage ponds - known as Duck Pond - are overlooked by a 

> bird hide on the eastern side of Fivebough. This is a great spot for
> waterfowl such as Musk, Blue-billed, Freckled and Pink-eared Duck, Plumed
> Whistling-Duck and Australasian Shoveler.
> 
> The Hooey Rd Lookout (-34.523651, 146.440815) is located on the other of
> Fivebough Swamp. The Lookout provides a nice vantage point to scan the
> wetland, with the best time for viewing at the end of the day, when large
> numbers of Glossy Ibis fly in to roost for the night. Numbers vary from year
> to year - the highest counts has been a staggering 20,000 in Nov 1995, and
> 15,000 in Nov 2005.
> 
> Tuckerbil Wetlands
> Another wetland worth investigating in the area is Tuckerbil Wetland. It's a
> large swamp north of Leeton. Situated in crop fields, it can be accessed via
> Cantrill Rd 12 km north-west of Leeton. Drive up Cantrill Rd until you find
> a picnic area adjacent an old sand quarry in a field.
> 
> The quarry has is good a place to see White-backed Swallow, Red-backed
> Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater and Striated Pardalote, all which nest in the
> quarry. When there is water in the swamp, it contains many of the birds
> found at Fivebough. It's also a good place to see Blue Bonnet and Cockatiel.
> 
> Campbells Swamp
> Aside from Swamp Tuckerbil and Fivebough Wetlands, Campbells Swamp just
> north of Griffith (-34.229344, 146.031104) has some interesting birds - it's
> a small shallow wetland, and has some nice areas of reeds and open water.
> There's a nice bird hide constructed and boardwalk to get to it, and because
> of its small size, it's possible to walk all the way around the swamp.
> There's a good car park 1 km past the turn-off to Lake Wyangan.
> 
> I've not seen them, but when the water levels are right, it is a known site
> for Australian Little Bittern and Australasian Bittern - and you might catch
> up with Plumed Whistling-Duck, Freckled Duck, Magpie Goose, Baillon's Crake,
> Australian Spotted Crake, Spotless Crake, Black-tailed Native-hen, and
> Red-kneed Dotterel. Like Fivebough, when the water level is right, thousands
> of Glossy Ibis may come to roost in the swamp each evening. And you
> occasionally get waders such as Wood, Pectoral and Marsh Sandpiper.
> 
> An interesting walk is to cross the western fence of the swamp - or go
> around - into the crown land and then head to the old cattle yards. This
> minor land depression is edged with a single line of Bimble Box that act as
> an ephemeral flood depressions, and can be good for birds.
> 
> BTW the Griffith Golf Course is one if the best sites in the region for
> Major Mitchell Cockatoo and Blue Bonnet are usually there.
> 
> Pulletop Nature Reserve
> Pulletop (145 ha) is a really interesting remnant area of the mallee located
> north east of Cocoparra, 35 km north of Griffith. It's located just off the
> Rankins Springs Road. Turn west when you get to Pulletop Rd, and the reserve
> is about 4 km (-33.964751, 146.083791). It is worth noting that Pulletop Rd
> is a really just a sandy track - when I was there it was in need of a good
> grading, and may be impassable after rain.
> 
> The reserve has four species of mallee, White (Eucalyptus dumosa),
> Narrow-leaf Red (E. leptophylla), Red Mallee (E. socialis) and Yorrell (E.
> gracilis). These species dominate the reserve. There are some patches of
> Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata) and Mallee Cypress-pine (Callitris verrucosa)
> that are intermixed with Streaked Wattle (Acacia lineata), Sweet Quandong
> (Santalum acuminatum), Fringed Heath-myrtle (Micromyrtus ciliata) and
> Wedge-leafed Hopbush (Dononea cuneata). There's also a small area of Bimble
> Box (E. populnea) woodland in the south-west corner.
> 
> Rare plants in the reserve include Club-leafed Phebalium (Phebalium
> obcordatum) and Rankins Springs Grevillea (Grevillea rosmarinifolia ssp
> glabella), so look out for those. And look for native orchids such as Dwarf
> Greenhood (Pterostylis nana) and the even smaller Midget Greenhood (P.
> mutica), Blue Fingers (Caladenia caerulea) and Pink Fingers (C. carnea).
> 
> Due to this mallee mix, Pulletop is a great place to see parrots such as
> Major Mitchell’s Cockatoo, Cockatiel, Mallee Ringneck, Mulga Parrot,
> Budgerigar and Blue Bonnet. It's also excellent for honeyeaters, such as
> Yellow-plumed, White-fronted, Black, Singing, Painted Brown-headed,
> Spiny-cheeked, Striped, White-eared and White-plumed Honeyeater,
> Yellow-throated Miner and Crimson Chat - now that's not a bad list! You can
> also see Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow,
> Crested Bellbird, Varied Trilller, Rufous Songlark and Variegated and
> Splendid Fairy-wren.
> 
> With great misfortunate, however, a few birds have gone missing from
> Pulletop. Malleefowl and Red-lored Whistler were last seen in the mid-1980s
> and are now considered extinct. The reserve was retained because it was felt
> that this was a sufficient area to retain a viable population of these
> species, which unfortunately does not seem to be the case. It's a real pity,
> for instance Graeme Chapman photographed NSW's first ever record of
> Red-lored Whistler here in 1964.
> 
> There's an old hut in the reserve. It's been rarely used since the late
> 1980s when the last Malleefowl disappeared. Malleefowl used to be a regular
> attraction for birders and the hut was used for these trips. Harry Frith did
> much of his pioneering work on Malleefowl around this hut, and there's still
> an intact Malleefowl mound nearby. The hut is therefore an interesting
> archaeological birdwatching site, very significant, and worth preserving.
> 
> Unfortunately a number of other mallee species have declined and may have
> become locally extinct. These include Shy Heathwren (only one record since
> the late 1990s), Chestnut Quail-thrush (only a few recent records), Southern
> Scrub-robin (last record 1982) and Gilbert's Whistler (last record 1982).
> So, when you do visit Pulletop, keep your eyes open, and your fingers
> crossed, and hopefully you see these bird species.
> 
> Aside from the birds, another good reason for visiting Pulletop is to
> immerse yourself in some wonderful mallee habitat - one of my favourite
> places to be!
> 
> Leeton and Superb Parrot
> In spring and summer Leeton is a great place to find Superb Parrot. I've
> seen them there at a number of spots: one was in roadside trees along
> Irrigation Way (-34.643565, 146.415968) about 11 km from Leeton; another is
> in the Yanco Agricultural Institute (-34.617190, 146.423197) that located on
> Truck Rd - this was the place where the Australian Birdfair was held.
> Crimson Rosella (‚ÄėYellow Rosella‚Äô ssp. flaveolus) is also common around
> here.
> 
> Note re other spots to see Superb Parrot
> Another great place to see Superb Parrot is at Charles Sturt University in
> Wagga Wagga, with best times to see them between August to December. Look
> for them coming into drink at a small dam near car park 7 (-35.062440,
> 147.355528), and they also like to feed in a paddock adjoining Nathan Cobb
> Drive (-35.056824, 147.354327).
> 
> Other places that Superb Parrot occur (mainly between August to December)
> include the Berry Jerry section of Murrumbidgee Valley National Park, with a
> nice spot to look for them is here -35.046041, 147.037321. Access is via the
> roadside pull-in on the Sturt Hwy between Wagga Wagga and Narrandera. I've
> also seen them regularly at a couple of sites along the Olympic Hwy, such as
> the Wallacetown Roadside Rest Area (-34.959565, 147.447136), and a small
> area of bushland here (-35.006376, 147.421253).
> 
> Junee Wetland
> The Junee Wetland (-34.868043, 147.579299) is a small wetland in the middle
> of downtown Junee. It is, however, paradise for crake and rails - so, if you
> are passing through it is really worth stopping to have a look. It receives
> 75% of the town's stormwater runoff, as a consequence, contain water even in
> the hotest time of year.
> 
> There's an excellent boardwalk, which enables you to get up close and
> personal with Australian Spotted, Spotless and Baillon's Crake and
> Buff-banded Rail. Another bird I've seen here is Brown Honeyeater, pretty
> much the most southern limit for this species. In summer the Junee Wetland
> can also be good for migratory waders, particularly Latham's Snipe.
> 
> Galore Hill Nature Reserve
> Galore Hill is 80 km south-east of Leeton. It's a new site for me. The first
> time I've visited was just a couple of week ago (June 2014), however I was
> so impressed by the place that I wanted to write about it, and think it's a
> special find! It's an impressive reserve that preserve about 500 ha of
> bushland, it accessed via the Narrandera Rd, between Narrandera and
> Lockhart. There's a lookout tower on the summit that offer fantastic
> panoramic views of the region. Galore Hill probably most famous as being the
> place that where bushranger 'Mad Dog' Morgan hid out in the caves in the
> park.
> 
> The first stop is actually before entering the reserve, at the intersection
> of Slocums Lane and Tinamba Lane (-35.115589, 146.759016). This is a good
> spot to see Apostlebird and Grey-crowned Babbler, which hang out in the
> native pines along the roads here.
> 
> Second stop is the arboretum, one of the reasons I was so impressed by
> Galore Hill. An arboretum is a botanical garden that's focuses on growing
> 'special' plants. They can be great places to see birds, attracted to a wide
> variety of flowering plants. A good example of this is the arboretum at
> Dryandra Forest (south-west WA).
> 
> So what if I tell you that the 'special plants' in the Galore Hill arboretum
> were Eremophila, Grevillea, Hakea and Acacia! It was like stumbling across
> bird heaven. I was blown away by the number of flowering plants, all bird
> attracting. As a result Galore Hill has a pretty good bird list, including
> the two rare nomads, Black and Pied Honeyeater!
> 
> So, second stop is the patch of Eremophila that's located immediately after
> you enter the park. I visited in the middle of winter, despite this, almost
> half the species of Eremophila were flowering. Look for honeyeaters such as
> Brown-headed, Fuscous, White-napped, Spiny-cheeked, White-plumed Honeyeater,
> and, if you are lucky, you might find Black and Pied Honeyeater!
> 
> After stopping at the Eremophila patch, it's worth driving along both the
> Curly Heckendorf Drive and the Summit Track, stopping where ever you see or
> hear bird activity.
> 
> Along the Summit Track, Grey Box dominant the lower areas, while and 
Dwyer’s 

> Red Gum, Black Cypress-Pine and Drooping Sheoke occur on the upper slopes
> and ridges. In these areas you might see Emu, White-throated and Brown
> Treecreeper, Restless Flycatcher, Varied Siytella, Rufous Songlark, Dusky,
> White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Variegated Fairy-wren, Diamond Firetail
> and Double-barred Finch.
> 
> The park's really good for robins; while there I saw Hooded, Red-capped,
> Scarlet, Flame and Eastern Yellow Robin and Jacky Winter! In terms of
> Thornbills and their allies there are Speckled Warbler, Weebill  Brown,
> Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Buff-rumped, Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill,
> Western Gerygone, and Southern Whiteface! Parrot recorded at Galore Hill
> include Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Superb and Red-rumped
> Parrot, Eastern and Crimson Rosella and Swift Parrot have also been
> recorded.
> 
> Interestingly the main reason I visited Galore Hill in the first place was
> to look for Glossy Black Cockatoo. Again, like at Cocoparra, unfortunately I
> dipped.
> 
> Finally, there's a Galore Hill bird list on a notice board in the park. It
> includes local bird names. Some are obvious, others not so - here's some
> examples:
> 
>   Soldier Bird  (Noisy Miner)
>   Lousy Jack  (Apostlebird)
>   Bowacker  (Grey-crowned Babbler)
>   Mopoke  (Southern Boobook)
>   Whistling Eagle   (Whistling Kite)
>   Ground Lark   (Australian Pipit)
>   Brown Field Lark  (Singing Bushlark)
>   Laughin Jackass   (Laughing Kookaburra)
>   Black Backed Magpie  (Australian Magpie)
>   White Backed Magpie   (Australian Magpie)
>   Pee Wit   (Magpie Lark)
>   Black Magpie   (White-winged Chough)
>   Grass Parrot   (Red-rumped Parrot)
>   Southern Yellow Robin (Eastern Yellow Robin)
>   Brown Flycatcher   (Jacky Winter)
>   Scissor Grinder   (Restless Flycatcher)
>   Spur-winged Plover  (Masked Lapwing)
>   Banded Plover   (Banded Lapwing)
>   Bottle Swallow  (Welcome Swallow)
>   Diamond Sparrow   (Diamond Firetail)
>   Little Quail  (Little Button-quail)
>   Rainbow Bird  (Rainbow Bee-eater)
> 
> Lists like that are simply priceless!
> 
> Tim Dolby
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> _________________________________
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the
> intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information
> or be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended
> recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is
> unauthorised. If you have received this email in error, please advise the
> sender via return email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria
> University does not warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects
> and accepts no liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects.
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> 
> This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the 
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information or 
be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended 
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is unauthorised. 
If you have received this email in error, please advise the sender via return 
email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria University does not 
warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects and accepts no 
liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects. 

> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Brolga
From: Jude Lattaway <2roaminoz AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 18:24:01 +1000
We came across the Savannah Way June/July and saw many Brolga and
Saruse Cranes .. but alas we were driving each time and were unable to
count most sightings except for one just east of the Albert River.

Jude

On 7/18/14, Michael Tarburton  wrote:
> On the 28 June Shirl & I counted 520 Brolga on recently harvested
> paddocks of sorghum about 5 km Sth of Mazeppa N.P. on the Gregory
> Developmental Road.  So yes there must be something that attracts
> Brolga to some recently harvested crops.  Others just south of there
> had no brolga
>
> Cheers  Mike
>
>
>
> On 18/07/2014, at 4:19 PM, Jude Lattaway wrote:
>>    Could not believe
>> the Brolgas!  Counted 170 but could not quite see others further down
>
>

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: PennyDB <penny AT pennydb.org>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 18:00:21 +1000
Dear list

I took part in the winter waterbird survey of Port Stephens Bay, NSW 
(just north of Newcastle) Monday 14th July. When puttering past Snapper 
Island, a large flock of Topknot Pigeons erupted from a big fig tree, 
and flying with them was one Channel-billed Cuckoo.  First time I have 
seen one mid winter.
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Mike Jarvis [mailto:experiencethewild AT gmail.com] On Behalf Of
> Experience the Wild
> Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 2:30 PM
> To: 'Alastair Silcock'
> Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
>
> Hello Alastair,
>
> I have heard CBC at Aurora recently.
>
> My winter records of CBC are as follows:-
> 2014
> July 5  - Mary River Wilderness Retreat, Arnhem Highway May 28 - Yellow
> Waters, Kakadu
> 2013
> July 1 - Corroboree Park
> June 6 - Mary River Wilderness Retreat, Arnhem Highway
> 2012
> July 21 - Ubirr, Kakadu
> July 14 - Bird Billabong, Arnhem Highway May 26 - Ubirr, Kakadu
>
> Regards
> Mike Jarvis
> Experience the Wild
> www.experiencethewild.com.au
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
> Alastair Silcock
> Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 11:26 AM
> To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
>
> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
>
> On July 9, a large long grey bird flew out in front of me on an early
> morning walk near the Kakadu Aurora Hotel just west of the South Alligator
> River. Given the size & colour, I can't imagine what else it could have
> been.  Even in the split second, I thought I would have seen the bill easily
> but did not.
>
> Are they ever seen in winter in the Top End? (last week being my first
> visit).
>
> regards
> Alastair
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> .
>


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Brolga
From: Michael Tarburton <tarburton.m AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 17:36:19 +1000
On the 28 June Shirl & I counted 520 Brolga on recently harvested  
paddocks of sorghum about 5 km Sth of Mazeppa N.P. on the Gregory  
Developmental Road.  So yes there must be something that attracts  
Brolga to some recently harvested crops.  Others just south of there  
had no brolga

Cheers  Mike



On 18/07/2014, at 4:19 PM, Jude Lattaway wrote:
>    Could not believe
> the Brolgas!  Counted 170 but could not quite see others further down

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
From: Neville Schrader OAM <nschrader AT bigpond.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 17:34:06 +1000
Hi Tim,

           The big problem I think in assessing if the Glossy ever occurred
south of the Murrumbidgee/ Murray is habitat and possible competition from
the endangered Victorian population of the Red-tailed black Cockatoo and
possibly identification.  Llewellyn (Emu. 1974) looked at the historical
records for the two species of black cockatoos believed to occur in the
riverine in his paper. He was able to prove that the only black cockatoo
with a red tail was the glossy. An the reports of Red-tailed Black Cockatoos
( C. banksii) were errors in identifications.  Historical records should be
treated with caution especially as relates to locations and identifications.
Additional care is also  required in interpretation of historical records in
relation to locations where specimens were collected. From what I've read
there appears have been a fair trade in specimens.

Food is all important and luckily areas where verticillata grows is not good
faming land (at least in NSW) which is probably why a  reasonable population
and distribution still exist in this state.  I think it is reasonable to
assume that the distribution of verticillata is possibly a good indication
of what the Glossy BC may have been. Thus fits your Mallacoota theory is
plausable as they would have available habitat and a food source, especially
when considering the distribution of verticillata along the Victorian Coast.
At what period the two populations( Kangaroo Is and Victorian)  became
isolated due to climate change or habitat loss is an interesting question.
The other interesting question is if habitat was available would the species
recolonise.

I think the White-browed Scrubwren is a good example of a species which has
split into a number of races/subspecies due to population isolation, though
Tasmania is possible the best example.

All very interesting, gets the grey matter working.

Regards

Neville
-----Original Message----- 
From: Tim Dolby
Sent: Thursday, July 17, 2014 6:09 PM
To: Neville Schrader OAM
Cc: birding-aus
Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, 
Pulletop and Galore Hill

Really interesting to hear your comments about the Riverina Glossy 
Black-Cockatoo Neville, thanks - especially your thought about them being 
not be as isolated as some think. Itís been noted that they can move over 
considerable distances so, yes, the movement between places such as West 
Wyalong and Narrandera is not be out of the equation.

In terms of the Kangaroo Island birds, Iíd always thought they were linked 
to the east coast birds, around Mallacoota. The reason for their isolation 
was loss of habitat along the South Australian and Victorian coast. However, 
if they are capable of traveling long distances, perhaps in good years they 
may have moved also the river systems, along the Murrumbidgee and the Murray 
River, n to coastal SA. Iíd be interested to know if there were any 
historical records between the Riverina and Kangeroo Island? I canít find 
any. I suppse another option is that they were isolated (along with a number 
of other species) at the end of the Pleistocene, approx. 10,000 years ago, 
when the water levels dropped in the Murray Basin, changing the landscape in 
between.

Cheers,

Tim

________________________________________
From: Neville Schrader OAM [nschrader AT bigpond.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 8:09 PM
To: Tim Dolby
Cc: birding-aus
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, 
Pulletop and Galore Hill

Hi Tim,

             As you, the distribution of the Riverina population of the
Glossy Black Cockatoo, has intrigued me for some time.
I've come to the conclusion that the Riverina population is probably not as
isolated as literature would suggest.  If you look at records in bird
reports, over the
last 30 years, it becomes clear that there is no barrier and if you compare
the distribution of Allocasuarina verticillataa a picture starts to emerge.

Bob Miller a beekeeper from I think Griffith or Leeton, who travelled
extensively in central NSW ( meet him when I lived at Ivanhoe in the 1970
introduced by John Hobbs) observed them at a large number of locations,
(unfortunately I'm not aware what happened to his records), but he observed
the species on isolated ranges, mountains and ridges with populations of
verticillata broadly from Nymagee to Narrandera, including places like Mt
Hope, Tottenham, down to Narrandera.

I think Bob published a paper in Australian Birds back in the 70's.
Llewellyn also published a paper in the Emu on the confusion between the two
species red tailed black cockatoos in the Riverina and he put foreword the
theory on the relationship with the Kangaroo Island population. I've seen
nothing since. Christidis and Boles makes no comment.

Besides the locations you mention in recent years, Glossy Black's have been
recorded from Trangie, Tottenham, West Wyalong, Back Creek SF east of Wyong,
south end of Lake Cowal. From this site you can see the Weddin Mtns, not an
unreasonable distance to travel for a bird of this size.

They have also been observed by local landholders ( confirmed by the fact
they were feeding on She-oaks) at Bogan Gate west of Parkes, Gobondery
Range, Albert and Bogan R. near Peak Hill (Minore, Hervey Range, Bumberry
Nangar, Conimba etc are east of these
locations, all which have populations of Glossy's). The Goonoo Goonoo
SF/Conservation area also holds a good population and is in flying distance,
I would suggest.

I've always considered there is a couple of ridges west of Mt. Hope that
would be worth investigating, but dirt roads and isolation
is a problem. As is some of ridges between Hillston and Lake Cargelligo
worth a look at.

I guess as more birdwatchers travel west and the roads improve the
distribution of the Glossy Black Cockatoo will become clearer, but until
then the  "urban myth". will continue with the distribution of the Glossy
black Cockatoo and the isolated population.

By the way a good report brings back some memories.

Good Birding

Neville Schrader





-----Original Message-----
From: Tim Dolby
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 3:12 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough,
Pulletop and Galore Hill

Hi everyone, for something to do I've written up a trip/bird/plant report
for the Riverina - an area that I've been spending quite a bit of time in
recently.  The full report with some images is also on my website at
http://tim-dolby.blogspot.com.au. If you do get around to reading it, I hope
you like it!

Cheers,

Tim Dolby
_______________________

Birding the Riverina - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill

The following report covers some birdwatching locations in the Riverina,
including Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest, Fivebough Wetland,
Leeton and Tuckerbil Wetland, Pulletop Nature Reserve and Galore Hill Nature
Reserve. I've visited most of these sites about half a dozen times, so this
report is a bit of a rundown of those experiences, plus a bit of background
knowledge thrown in.

In 1817 John Oxley, the first Europeans to visit the region, wrote in his
journal "the weather as usual fine and clear, which is the greatest comfort
we enjoy in these deserts, abandoned as they seem to be by every living
creature capable of getting out of them." How wrong he was - from a
birdwatching and wildlife point of view, the Riverina is a seriously
under-estimated birding destination. By contrast with Oxley views, when
early settler Henry Osborne climbed to the top of Galore Hill in 1847 he
shouted "There's land enough and galore for me". Galore is an Irish word
that means plenty. This was perhaps a bad omen in terms of the clearing of
native vegetation, however it does show that the Riverina is an area of
contrasts, certainly in terms of its habitats, and it appeals to different
people.

One reason Iíve written this report is because a lot of Australian birders
travel to northern Victoria, visiting places such as Chiltern-Mt Pilot
National Park and Barmah National Park but seem to stop at the Murray River.
This may be because there's relatively little information about bird sites
just north of the Murray, so hereís my own personal rundown of these places.

For a while the Riverina was a popular destination for birdwatchers, due
mainly to the Australian Birdfair, which was held each year in Leeton.
Fantastically organised by Mike Schultz, unfortunately this event hasnít
taken place since 2011, and a new Australian Bird Fair has started in
Sydney's Olympic Park. In many ways it's a great shame, I attended the
Leeton Birdfair in 2010 (or was it 2009?) and it was fabulous! There was a
great program, it was organised by some great people, and it was in a great
location.

The Riverina is a also great stop over site, stop there when you're heading
to Round Hill Nature Reserve and Lake Cargelligo, stop there if you're
heading from Melbourne to Brisbane (and beyond) or vice versa, and stop
there if you're heading from Sydney to Adelaide or vice versa.

Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest
The main site I want to concentrate on is Cocoparra National Park (8358 ha)
and the adjacent Binya State Forest (4170 ha), mainly because they are both
a rare woodland remnant, and they are a bit of a jewel in the Riverina
crown. I've visited these parks a number of  times; there's some dramatic
scenery, rocky outcrops and, in places, the rich red soils contrast
wonderfully with the greens of the trees, particularly the native pines.

First gazetted as a national park in 1969, Cocoparra National Park is
located 20 km east of Griffith on the Burley Griffin Way. When I've visited
I've pitched a tent at the excellent Woolshed Flat camp ground, or visited
from Leeton. As with most national parks bush camping is also permitted away
from roads and facilities. The Cocoparra Range is part of the traditional
lands of the Wiradjuri nation, and there are ~60 known Aboriginal sites,
mainly open campsites and scarred trees.

Wattle Drive - note my parking style! Lesson 1: car parking technique for
birdwatchers, follow these steps. See what you think is an unusual bird,
stop quickly in the middle of the track and leave your car door wide open
(this is important), and then walk off aimlessly looking for the mystery
bird. Ultimately you want to repeat these steps as much as is respectfully
possible.

Cocoparra's plants
Before talking about the birds, I thought I spend sometime writing about the
great plants at Cocoparra and Binya. With over 450 species recorded, these
are linked to different habitat types, each species varying according to
soil type.

On the Ridges
Cocoparra is a series of ranges, with exposed rough exposed rocks. On the
high ridges you'll find Black Cypress-pine (Callitris endlicheri), Dwyerís
Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri), Currawang (Acacia sparsiflora), Green
Tea-Tree (Leptospermum trivalve), and there's some heathland dominated by
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata), areas where it's worth looking for Shy
Heathwren.

The Slopes
In the dry sclerophyll forest on the rising foot and midslopes you find
native pines such as Black (Callitris endlicheri) and White Cypress-pine (C.
glaucophylla) and Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Eucalypts
here include Dwyer's Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus Dwyeri), Mugga Ironbark (E.
sideroxylon), Red Stringybark (E. macrorhyncha), Grey Box (E. microcarpa)
and the wonderful Bimble Box (E. ucalyptus populnea), with it's glossy and
rounded dark green leaves. This particular habitat mix is considered to be
regionally endangered Ė with less than 10% remaining of its original
extent - and is also the habitat type that supports locally endangered
Glossy Black-Cockatoo (discussed below).

Wattles on the slopes includes Currawong (Acacia doratoxylon), Yarran (A.
homalophylla), Currawang (A. sparsiflora), Deane's Wattle (A. deanei) and
Boree (A. pendula), while other trees here include Kurrajong (Brachychiton
populneum), Rosewood (Heterodendrum oleifolium) and Cherry Ballart
(Exocarpos cupressiformis).

When I visited Cocoparra just a few weeks ago the slopes were covered in
Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana). A spectacular climber with large
white-light red tube flowers about 15mm long, it's a close relative of the
Bower Vine (Pandorea jasmanoides) grown as a garden plant.. These flowers
cascaded from the tops of shrubs and trees along the Mt Brogden walk.
Pandorea pandorana seems to be a highly variable species, for instance in
other places that I've seen them they've flowered in Spring. However, here
at Cocoparra this year they were flowering profusely mid-winter.

The Woodlands
In the open grassy woodlands, and along the parks rocky creek lines and
sheltered gullies, you can find Blakely's Red Gum (Eucalyptus blakelyi),
Yellow Box (E. melliodora)  Dwyer's Mallee Gum (E. Dwyeri), Red Stringybark
(E. macrorhyncha), Bimble Box (E. populnea) and

Shrubs and Herbs Ground cover is normally sparse but after rain all the
grasses and herbs come to life - look for Oval-leaf or Purple Mintbush
(Prostanthera ovalifolia), Curry Bush (Cassinia laevis), Sticky Everlasting
(Xerochrysum viscosum), Rusty Spider-Flower (Grevillea floribunda), Common
Fringe-myrtle (Calytrix tetragona), Grey Guinea Flower (Hibbertia
obtusifolia), Nodding Blue Lily (Stypandra glauca), Smooth Flax Lily
(Dianella laevis), Urn Heath (Melichrus urceolatus), Australian Bluebell
(Wahlenbergia stricta) and Sandhill Goodenia (Goodenia willisiana). Native
daisies include Cut-leaved Daisy (Brachyscome multifida), Variable Daisy (B.
ciliaris) and Showy Daisy (B. ciliocarpa), while the tussock grasses are
Spear Grass (Austrostipa nodosa), Variable Spear Grass (Stipa variabilis)
and Wallaby Grass (Danthonia linkii).

There are a few rare plants occurring in the park. This includes Cocoparra
Pomaderris (Pomaderris cocoparrana), which is confined to rocky higher
altitudes areas in the Cocoparra Ranges - it's easily recognised by its
ovate leaves with a green upper surface and velvety, grey under surface, and
a bright yellow flowers in spring. It was once thought to be the more
widespread Pomaderris andromedifolia, until it was revealed to be distinct
separate species. Other rare plants include Club-leafed or Dainty Phebalium
(Phebalium obcordatum) and Irongrass (Lomandra patens).

Cocoparra's mammals and reptiles
In terms of native mammals in the park, Cocoparra is a bit of refuge. I've
seen Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), both Eastern (Macropus giganteus) and
Western Grey Kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), Red Kangaroo (M. rufus), Black
(Swamp) Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), while Red-necked Wallaby (M.
rufrogriseus) have been recorded near Cocoparra but not in the park itself -
probably the most westerly population for this species in the NSW.

Smaller mammals in the park remain largely elusive. There are Brushtail
Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) and the diurnal Yellow-footed Antechinus
(Antechinus flavipes), both relatively common. Most other small mammals are
known only by their remains identified in owl pellets, such as Rattus sp.,
i.e. Bush Rat (Rattus fuscipes), Bandicoot (Isoodon sp.) and native mice
(Pseudomys sp.). Eight species of bat have been recorded, the most common
being the White-striped Mastiff bat (Tadarida australis) as well as the
vulnerable Eastern Long-eared Bat (Nyctophilus timoriensis). Feral animals
in the park include Cat, Fox, Goat (quite common, estimated numbers to be
~2000, Iíve seen them on virtually every walks Iíve done), Rabbit and Iíve
seen signs of wild Pig.

There is a variety of reptiles in the park, notably the Nobbi Dragon
(Amphibolurus nobbi) and the Tree Crevice-skink or Tree Skink (Egernia
striolata). Both occur in the rocky areas along the Mt Brogden walk. The
Nobbi Dragon is similar to a Jacky Lizard (A. muricatus), but has a
distinctive stripe along its backs which is often pale-coloured or even
yellow, while the best place to look for Tree Skink is on the trunk of a
large eucalypt that have peeling loose bark and is surrounded by piles of
rocks, broken branches, dead leaves and some decaying hollow logs. Other
reptiles include Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbatus), Lace Monitor (Varanus
varius), Wood Gecko (Diplodactylus vittatus) and Mulga Snake (Pseudechis
australis).

The birds and bird sites
Cocoparra and Binya were classified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife
International, mainly because it supports a relatively large populations of
the near threatened Painted Honeyeater (the highest number of birds recorded
at one site at one time was 22) and contains Diamond Firetail. While it
always great to see these two species, Cocoparra has many other birding
attractions. For instance you can target birds such as Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, Black-eared
Cuckoo, Striped Honeyeater, Turquoise Parrot as well as the wonderful mallee
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot and Blue Bonnet - here
it's the yellow-vented ssp. haematogaster. In "good years" Cocoparra
attracts birds such as Cockatiel, Budgerigar, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo,
Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater. It's also always nice to see Splendid and
Variegated Fairy-wren, nice raptors in the area include Spotted Harrier and
Black and Peregrine Falcon and, at night, I've heard Spotted Nightjar.

The roadside native pines along Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route
Rd is a good place to look for White-browed Treecreeper. They are quite
active while foraging on the rough trunks of Belah, Buloke and native
pines - listen for their trilled, cricket-like chirrup call, especially
during the breeding season. Along the Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock
Route Road there are also scattered area of Bimble Box (Eucalyptus populnea)
which tend to be covered in Dropping Mistletoe (Amyema pendula). In late
spring and summer this is the place to look here for Painted Honeyeater -
like the White-browed Treecreeper, there call is distinctive, a loud
georgi - georgi. I've also seen Spotted Harrier alongside the Whitton Stock
Route Road.

Forestry Hut
The Forestry Hut is one of the least known birding site in Binya. It's
located on the southern side of the Burley Griffin Way, approx 200m east of
the Whitton Stock Route intersection (-34.242500, 146.237778). Access is via
Pine Drive - it may be impassable in wet conditions, but you can easily walk
in. This is another good spot to look for White-browed Treecreeper, and it
can be a great birding spot generally, especially during spring flowering.
This is the only area that I've see Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater, and
here I've also seen Hooded Robin, White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Mulga
Parrot, Blue Bonnet, and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren.

Wattle Dam and Moss Dam
Cocoparra and Binya hold NSW's most westerly populations of Turquoise
Parrot. A good spot to look for them is around Wattle Dam and Moss Dam,
particularly in the mornings. Both located off Barry Scenic Drive (an
excellent 2WD road). Aside from the Turqs, around these dams you can also
see Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot, Rainbow Bee-eater, Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren, Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeater, Inland,
Chestnut-rumped and Yellow Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella,
Apostlebird and Bar-shouldered Dove - the south-western-most population for
this species.

Spring Hill and Falcon Falls
The Spring Hill Picnic Area can be teeming with birds, particularly when
there are mixed-species flocks about. Here there's a chance of seeing
Turquoise Parrot, as well as Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Brown
Treecreeper, Grey-crowned Babbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Yellow and Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Western Gerygone,
Jacky Winter, Hooded Robin, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch.

From the picnic area take the walk to Falcon Falls, where the scenery is
spectacular. These falls are appropriately named after Peregrine Falcon,
which breed on the cliffs in the area. Here there are also occasional
sightings of Glossy Black-Cockatoo.

Binya Forest Drive
The habitat along the Binya Forest Drive is dominated by native pines - it's
worth stopping where ever you see birdlife. It's particularly good for
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Blue Bonnet, and Turquoise, Mulga and
Red-rumped Parrot. Along this drive I've also seen Striped Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Crested Bellbird, Splendid Fairy-wren, Brown and
White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, and also heard Painted
Honeyeater. This area is probably the best spot to look for Gilbertís
Whistler.

Note: that the Binya Forest Drive may be impassable in wet conditions. Also
note that the the Parakeet Drive connects the Binya Forest Drive and Barry
Scenic Drive.

Mt Brogden and Glossy Black-Cockatoo
One of the best places to look for Glossy Black-Cockatoo is along the Mt
Brogden walking track.  This is the endangered Riverina population of Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, birds that are largely restricted to hills and low ridges
with areas of Drooping She-Oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Glossy
Black-Cockatoo then need suitable large hollows in Grey Box (Eucalyptus
microcarpa) or Dwyer's Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri). Unfortunately much of this
type of habitat has been cleared and is fragmented.

The social and conservation context of the Glossy Black-Cockatoo in the
Riverina intrigues me. As a population they are disjunct from other Glossy
Black-Cockatoo in NSW, and it now seems that the genetic link to the nearest
easterly NSW birds is uncertain. Indeed there is some evidence that the
Riverina birds are more closely related to the Kangaroo Island subspecies
halmaturinus - only a mere 1000 km away - which is remarkable! The fact that
the Riverina Glossy Black-Cockatoo are isolated and that they may be linked
to the Kangaroo Island birds indicates that this population has a very
significant conservation value.

[Note: If you don't see Glossy Black-Cockatoo in Cocoparra National Park,
they've also been recorded in the Narrandera Range, Brobenah Hills,
McPhersons Range, Galore Hill, Lachlan Range, Naradhan Range, Jimberoo State
Forest and Gap Dam State Forest.]

Mt Brogden is also one of the few spots in Cocoparra where Chestnut
Quail-thrush have been recorded, which may be present in the park in small
numbers - aside from that, the nearest population of Chestnut Quail-thrush
is said to be Loughnan Nature Reserve near Hillston and the bird at Round
Hill and Nombinnie.

Store Creek and Jack Creek Walking Tracks
The Store Creek walking track begins at the picnic area and walks you
through a nice section of Cypress Pine and Bimble Box. It ends at stunning
natural amphitheatre formed by the junction of two creeks. It's a good track
to look for Crested Bellbird, Red-capped Robin, Speckled Warbler, Striped
and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow and Inland Thornbill,
Splendid Fairy-wren, Double-barred Finch and Diamond Firetail. In spring,
I've seen Black-eared Cuckoo, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow and
Western Gerygone here.

I've seen similar birds along the equally spectacular Jack Creek walking
track - it a vast gorge, walk through some gullies and exposed ridges to
three lookouts that provide views of the gorge. One of the features of the
Jack Creek picnic area is that White-winged Chough nest above the picnic
tables.

Woolshed Flat
There's a very pleasant camping area at Woolshed Flat. Around the  campsite
and in the surrounding bush I've seen Emu, Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck,
Blue Bonnet, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, Yellow-plumed and Blue-faced
Honeyeater, Noisy and Little Friarbird, Speckled Warbler, Southern
Whiteface,  Dusky Woodswallow, Restless Flycatcher, Pallid Cuckoo, Rainbow
Bee-eater, White-winged Trilller, Western Gerygone, Restless Flycatcher, and
Rufous Songlark, and thornills such as Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow, and
Yellow-rumped. I've not seen them, but there are occasional sightings of
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo around Woolshed.

At night I've heard Spotted Nightjar, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, Southern
Boobook, and Tawny Frogmouth - the frogmouth here are the central
Australian/dry country ssp. brachypterus.

Fivebough Wetland
A fantastic and very large Ramsar-listed wetland, Fivebough Wetland (400 ha)
is a must visit place when passing through the area. With an impressive one
hundred and eighty species recorded, including eighty waterbird species,
you'd be stupid not to stop! The main car park is about 2 km north-east of
Leeton's town centre on Petersham Rd (-34.535624, 146.420576). It's a
surprisingly small car park for such a large reserve, so don't blink or
you'll miss it. Leeton has a range of accommodation options - but if you're
looking for somewhere interesting to stay, I've found that a particular good
place is the grand Historic Hydro Motor Inn; despite the name, it's actually
a grand old motel. The restaurant at the Inn is called the Freckled Duck -
and no, before you ask, duck wasn't on the menu!

The birding around the car park, and the nearby planted section of gums, is
surprisingly good - I've found Little Friarbird, Yellow-throated Miner,
Singing and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow-rumped
Thornbill, Weebill, Western Gerygone, Striated Pardalote and Zebra Finch.

The 5 km of walking trails begin from the car park, and lead to a number of
viewing mounds and two excellent bird hides. The track first takes you to
along All Weather Walking Trail to the Bittern bird hide. Along the first
section of reeds, I've occasionally seen Brown Quail feeding in the grassy
fringes of the track.

This bird hide overlooks a portion of wetland specifically managed for the
relatively rare Australasian Bittern: in season, their presence may be
revealed by their repeated booming call, heard mainly at night. There is
also a chance of Australian Little Bittern.

From the Bittern bird hide, and the nearby viewing area, you may also see
Glossy Ibis, Magpie Goose, Brolga, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel,
Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and Black-tailed Native-hen. It's
always worth scanning the exposed muddy edges for Baillonís, Australian
Spotted and Spotless Crake.

A range of summer shorebirds visit the wetland, such as Lathamís Snipe,
Black-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Wood, Marsh and Sharp-tailed
Sandpiper, and Red-necked Stint, and look out for Whiskered and White-winged
Black Tern, White throated Needletail and Fork-tailed Swift. Rarities
recorded at the wetland include Little Curlew, Pectoral Sandpiper, Long-toed
Stint and Oriental Pratincole.

The shire councilís sewage ponds - known as Duck Pond - are overlooked by a
bird hide on the eastern side of Fivebough. This is a great spot for
waterfowl such as Musk, Blue-billed, Freckled and Pink-eared Duck, Plumed
Whistling-Duck and Australasian Shoveler.

The Hooey Rd Lookout (-34.523651, 146.440815) is located on the other of
Fivebough Swamp. The Lookout provides a nice vantage point to scan the
wetland, with the best time for viewing at the end of the day, when large
numbers of Glossy Ibis fly in to roost for the night. Numbers vary from year
to year - the highest counts has been a staggering 20,000 in Nov 1995, and
15,000 in Nov 2005.

Tuckerbil Wetlands
Another wetland worth investigating in the area is Tuckerbil Wetland. It's a
large swamp north of Leeton. Situated in crop fields, it can be accessed via
Cantrill Rd 12 km north-west of Leeton. Drive up Cantrill Rd until you find
a picnic area adjacent an old sand quarry in a field.

The quarry has is good a place to see White-backed Swallow, Red-backed
Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater and Striated Pardalote, all which nest in the
quarry. When there is water in the swamp, it contains many of the birds
found at Fivebough. It's also a good place to see Blue Bonnet and Cockatiel.

Campbells Swamp
Aside from Swamp Tuckerbil and Fivebough Wetlands, Campbells Swamp just
north of Griffith (-34.229344, 146.031104) has some interesting birds - it's
a small shallow wetland, and has some nice areas of reeds and open water.
There's a nice bird hide constructed and boardwalk to get to it, and because
of its small size, it's possible to walk all the way around the swamp.
There's a good car park 1 km past the turn-off to Lake Wyangan.

I've not seen them, but when the water levels are right, it is a known site
for Australian Little Bittern and Australasian Bittern - and you might catch
up with Plumed Whistling-Duck, Freckled Duck, Magpie Goose, Baillon's Crake,
Australian Spotted Crake, Spotless Crake, Black-tailed Native-hen, and
Red-kneed Dotterel. Like Fivebough, when the water level is right, thousands
of Glossy Ibis may come to roost in the swamp each evening. And you
occasionally get waders such as Wood, Pectoral and Marsh Sandpiper.

An interesting walk is to cross the western fence of the swamp - or go
around - into the crown land and then head to the old cattle yards. This
minor land depression is edged with a single line of Bimble Box that act as
an ephemeral flood depressions, and can be good for birds.

BTW the Griffith Golf Course is one if the best sites in the region for
Major Mitchell Cockatoo and Blue Bonnet are usually there.

Pulletop Nature Reserve
Pulletop (145 ha) is a really interesting remnant area of the mallee located
north east of Cocoparra, 35 km north of Griffith. It's located just off the
Rankins Springs Road. Turn west when you get to Pulletop Rd, and the reserve
is about 4 km (-33.964751, 146.083791). It is worth noting that Pulletop Rd
is a really just a sandy track - when I was there it was in need of a good
grading, and may be impassable after rain.

The reserve has four species of mallee, White (Eucalyptus dumosa),
Narrow-leaf Red (E. leptophylla), Red Mallee (E. socialis) and Yorrell (E.
gracilis). These species dominate the reserve. There are some patches of
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata) and Mallee Cypress-pine (Callitris verrucosa)
that are intermixed with Streaked Wattle (Acacia lineata), Sweet Quandong
(Santalum acuminatum), Fringed Heath-myrtle (Micromyrtus ciliata) and
Wedge-leafed Hopbush (Dononea cuneata). There's also a small area of Bimble
Box (E. populnea) woodland in the south-west corner.

Rare plants in the reserve include Club-leafed Phebalium (Phebalium
obcordatum) and Rankins Springs Grevillea (Grevillea rosmarinifolia ssp
glabella), so look out for those. And look for native orchids such as Dwarf
Greenhood (Pterostylis nana) and the even smaller Midget Greenhood (P.
mutica), Blue Fingers (Caladenia caerulea) and Pink Fingers (C. carnea).

Due to this mallee mix, Pulletop is a great place to see parrots such as
Major Mitchellís Cockatoo, Cockatiel, Mallee Ringneck, Mulga Parrot,
Budgerigar and Blue Bonnet. It's also excellent for honeyeaters, such as
Yellow-plumed, White-fronted, Black, Singing, Painted Brown-headed,
Spiny-cheeked, Striped, White-eared and White-plumed Honeyeater,
Yellow-throated Miner and Crimson Chat - now that's not a bad list! You can
also see Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow,
Crested Bellbird, Varied Trilller, Rufous Songlark and Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren.

With great misfortunate, however, a few birds have gone missing from
Pulletop. Malleefowl and Red-lored Whistler were last seen in the mid-1980s
and are now considered extinct. The reserve was retained because it was felt
that this was a sufficient area to retain a viable population of these
species, which unfortunately does not seem to be the case. It's a real pity,
for instance Graeme Chapman photographed NSW's first ever record of
Red-lored Whistler here in 1964.

There's an old hut in the reserve. It's been rarely used since the late
1980s when the last Malleefowl disappeared. Malleefowl used to be a regular
attraction for birders and the hut was used for these trips. Harry Frith did
much of his pioneering work on Malleefowl around this hut, and there's still
an intact Malleefowl mound nearby. The hut is therefore an interesting
archaeological birdwatching site, very significant, and worth preserving.

Unfortunately a number of other mallee species have declined and may have
become locally extinct. These include Shy Heathwren (only one record since
the late 1990s), Chestnut Quail-thrush (only a few recent records), Southern
Scrub-robin (last record 1982) and Gilbert's Whistler (last record 1982).
So, when you do visit Pulletop, keep your eyes open, and your fingers
crossed, and hopefully you see these bird species.

Aside from the birds, another good reason for visiting Pulletop is to
immerse yourself in some wonderful mallee habitat - one of my favourite
places to be!

Leeton and Superb Parrot
In spring and summer Leeton is a great place to find Superb Parrot. I've
seen them there at a number of spots: one was in roadside trees along
Irrigation Way (-34.643565, 146.415968) about 11 km from Leeton; another is
in the Yanco Agricultural Institute (-34.617190, 146.423197) that located on
Truck Rd - this was the place where the Australian Birdfair was held.
Crimson Rosella (ĎYellow Rosellaí ssp. flaveolus) is also common around
here.

Note re other spots to see Superb Parrot
Another great place to see Superb Parrot is at Charles Sturt University in
Wagga Wagga, with best times to see them between August to December. Look
for them coming into drink at a small dam near car park 7 (-35.062440,
147.355528), and they also like to feed in a paddock adjoining Nathan Cobb
Drive (-35.056824, 147.354327).

Other places that Superb Parrot occur (mainly between August to December)
include the Berry Jerry section of Murrumbidgee Valley National Park, with a
nice spot to look for them is here -35.046041, 147.037321. Access is via the
roadside pull-in on the Sturt Hwy between Wagga Wagga and Narrandera. I've
also seen them regularly at a couple of sites along the Olympic Hwy, such as
the Wallacetown Roadside Rest Area (-34.959565, 147.447136), and a small
area of bushland here (-35.006376, 147.421253).

Junee Wetland
The Junee Wetland (-34.868043, 147.579299) is a small wetland in the middle
of downtown Junee. It is, however, paradise for crake and rails - so, if you
are passing through it is really worth stopping to have a look. It receives
75% of the town's stormwater runoff, as a consequence, contain water even in
the hotest time of year.

There's an excellent boardwalk, which enables you to get up close and
personal with Australian Spotted, Spotless and Baillon's Crake and
Buff-banded Rail. Another bird I've seen here is Brown Honeyeater, pretty
much the most southern limit for this species. In summer the Junee Wetland
can also be good for migratory waders, particularly Latham's Snipe.

Galore Hill Nature Reserve
Galore Hill is 80 km south-east of Leeton. It's a new site for me. The first
time I've visited was just a couple of week ago (June 2014), however I was
so impressed by the place that I wanted to write about it, and think it's a
special find! It's an impressive reserve that preserve about 500 ha of
bushland, it accessed via the Narrandera Rd, between Narrandera and
Lockhart. There's a lookout tower on the summit that offer fantastic
panoramic views of the region. Galore Hill probably most famous as being the
place that where bushranger 'Mad Dog' Morgan hid out in the caves in the
park.

The first stop is actually before entering the reserve, at the intersection
of Slocums Lane and Tinamba Lane (-35.115589, 146.759016). This is a good
spot to see Apostlebird and Grey-crowned Babbler, which hang out in the
native pines along the roads here.

Second stop is the arboretum, one of the reasons I was so impressed by
Galore Hill. An arboretum is a botanical garden that's focuses on growing
'special' plants. They can be great places to see birds, attracted to a wide
variety of flowering plants. A good example of this is the arboretum at
Dryandra Forest (south-west WA).

So what if I tell you that the 'special plants' in the Galore Hill arboretum
were Eremophila, Grevillea, Hakea and Acacia! It was like stumbling across
bird heaven. I was blown away by the number of flowering plants, all bird
attracting. As a result Galore Hill has a pretty good bird list, including
the two rare nomads, Black and Pied Honeyeater!

So, second stop is the patch of Eremophila that's located immediately after
you enter the park. I visited in the middle of winter, despite this, almost
half the species of Eremophila were flowering. Look for honeyeaters such as
Brown-headed, Fuscous, White-napped, Spiny-cheeked, White-plumed Honeyeater,
and, if you are lucky, you might find Black and Pied Honeyeater!

After stopping at the Eremophila patch, it's worth driving along both the
Curly Heckendorf Drive and the Summit Track, stopping where ever you see or
hear bird activity.

Along the Summit Track, Grey Box dominant the lower areas, while and Dwyerís
Red Gum, Black Cypress-Pine and Drooping Sheoke occur on the upper slopes
and ridges. In these areas you might see Emu, White-throated and Brown
Treecreeper, Restless Flycatcher, Varied Siytella, Rufous Songlark, Dusky,
White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Variegated Fairy-wren, Diamond Firetail
and Double-barred Finch.

The park's really good for robins; while there I saw Hooded, Red-capped,
Scarlet, Flame and Eastern Yellow Robin and Jacky Winter! In terms of
Thornbills and their allies there are Speckled Warbler, Weebill  Brown,
Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Buff-rumped, Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill,
Western Gerygone, and Southern Whiteface! Parrot recorded at Galore Hill
include Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Superb and Red-rumped
Parrot, Eastern and Crimson Rosella and Swift Parrot have also been
recorded.

Interestingly the main reason I visited Galore Hill in the first place was
to look for Glossy Black Cockatoo. Again, like at Cocoparra, unfortunately I
dipped.

Finally, there's a Galore Hill bird list on a notice board in the park. It
includes local bird names. Some are obvious, others not so - here's some
examples:

    Soldier Bird  (Noisy Miner)
    Lousy Jack  (Apostlebird)
    Bowacker  (Grey-crowned Babbler)
    Mopoke  (Southern Boobook)
    Whistling Eagle   (Whistling Kite)
    Ground Lark   (Australian Pipit)
    Brown Field Lark  (Singing Bushlark)
    Laughin Jackass   (Laughing Kookaburra)
    Black Backed Magpie  (Australian Magpie)
    White Backed Magpie   (Australian Magpie)
    Pee Wit   (Magpie Lark)
    Black Magpie   (White-winged Chough)
    Grass Parrot   (Red-rumped Parrot)
    Southern Yellow Robin (Eastern Yellow Robin)
    Brown Flycatcher   (Jacky Winter)
    Scissor Grinder   (Restless Flycatcher)
    Spur-winged Plover  (Masked Lapwing)
    Banded Plover   (Banded Lapwing)
    Bottle Swallow  (Welcome Swallow)
    Diamond Sparrow   (Diamond Firetail)
    Little Quail  (Little Button-quail)
    Rainbow Bird  (Rainbow Bee-eater)

Lists like that are simply priceless!

Tim Dolby







_________________________________





This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information
or be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is
unauthorised. If you have received this email in error, please advise the
sender via return email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria
University does not warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects
and accepts no liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects.

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the 
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information 
or be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended 
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is 
unauthorised. If you have received this email in error, please advise the 
sender via return email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria 
University does not warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects 
and accepts no liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects. 


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Good News for Aussie Swiftlets
From: Jude Lattaway <2roaminoz AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:53:07 +1000
Wonderful news Mike .. especially finding the previously unknown colonies.
Jude

On 7/18/14, Michael Tarburton  wrote:
>
> Good News for Aussie Swiftlets
>
> Shirl & I have just spent 5 weeks censusing the swiftlets at
> Chillagoe-Mungana, West of Cairns.  The good news is that the last
> two seasons have received normal rainfall, unlike the previous four
> years, where La Nina has washed many nests from the roofs of the
> caves.  You can see some of the damage in the photos included in the
> last two papers at the end of this web page
>
> http://www.swiftsoftheworld.info/spplist.htm
>
> At Mudlark and Hercules caves where there had been no birds roosting
> or breeding in 2011, we found two and ten birds roosting.  At
> Swiftlet Scallops #2 Cave where only 2 birds were sleeping in 2011,
> we found 20 roosting birds in June 2014.
>
> Some other colonies had increased, but many are still lower than
> normal.  This is particularly true where feral cats have also been
> hitting the colonies at the same time as the rain has been washing
> nests off the walls and drowning eggs and birds.
>
> The last bit of good news is that we found three colonies that were
> unknown to us previously.  One of them had 550 birds, the others 26,
> and 60+.
>
> Happy birding
>
> Mike
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
>

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Brolga
From: Jude Lattaway <2roaminoz AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 16:19:19 +1000
Happened to be driving to Taylor's Beach (east of Ingham Qld) 17th
July where a cane farmer was ploughing his field.  Could not believe
the Brolgas!  Counted 170 but could not quite see others further down
the field and another group behind uncut cane.

Got David and I wondering .. would they be eating cane beetles that
had been ploughed into the soil ?  I did manage a couple of photos ..
but hey, with my point and shoot camera the photos are not fantastic
But you can tell they are Brolga.

Allan G ... I have noted this on the crane sighting report.

Jude

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: "Stephen Ambrose" <stephen AT ambecol.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 16:13:37 +1000
Hi All,

Not exactly the NT, but I reported a Channel-billed Cuckoo winter sighting
for Sydney on Birding-aus a couple of years ago (see below). In response,
Nikolas Haass extracted three other winter records for this species from
Eremaea NSW (also shown below).  So it would seem that there are a few CBCs
that overwinter in Australia. First-year birds perhaps? Today, we've had a
few winter records reported on Birding-aus from NT & Qld.  It would be
interesting to see if there are other winter records of this species. 

Stephen Ambrose
Ryde NSW

________________________________
From: Stephen Ambrose 
To: birding-aus AT vicnet.net.au 
Sent: Wednesday, July 18, 2012 1:53 PM
Subject: Channel-billed Cuckoo in Sydney
 
Mid morning I saw an adult Channel-billed Cuckoo in my neighbour's eucalypt
tree.  It was being mobbed by a pair of Australian Magpies with some
assistance from Noisy Miners.  Pied Currawongs raised a Channel-billed
Cuckoo in that same tree last summer (reported on Birding-aus).  I think the
magpies will be nesting soon, but this is the earliest time of the year that
I've seen a Channel-billed Cuckoo in Sydney.  I'd be interested to know if
there are any other CBC records from Sydney at this time of the year.

Stephen Ambrose
Ryde, NSW

________________________________
To: Stephen Ambrose , "birding-aus AT vicnet.net.au"
 
Subject: Channel-billed Cuckoo in Sydney 
From: Nikolas Haass  
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2012 22:17:56 -0700 (PDT)
 
This is from Eremaea NSW, period June-August, 2006-2012:

8/26/2007 Channel billed CuckooPennant Hills 
 Nick Hodges takes the prize for the first Channel billed Cuckoo record of
the 
season, with one heard on the 26th and seen the next day. 
 Nick Hodges via birdline phone service 2/9 #23196 

7/22/2009 Channel-billed CuckooNorth Bombi, McMasters Beach 
 John McLennan advises that at 700 hrs this morning a calling Channel-billed

Cuckoo was flying around his property which is about 2 kms south of
McMasters 
Beach on the Central Coast. In addition Dellas Johnston saw a Channel-billed

Cuckoo just north of Taree on 12/7/09. Both of these records are presumably,

early and out of season records for this summer migrant, the bulk of whose 
population normaly arrives in Stember. 
 Alan Morris 22/7 #49477 

8/31/2010 Channel-billed CuckooPennant Hills 
 Have just received the Latest newsletter from Birding Australia (FOC) and
note 
that I can beat the earliest sighted Channel-bill in the Sydney area: 31 8
10. 
The earliest I have heard one since living in the area. (The first Koel in 
Pennant Hills was later for me: 10 9 10). Also seen 1 8 10 in Cherrybrook
bush: 
a Brown Goshawk. 
 Nick Hodges 13/11 #71618
 
 
Cheers,

Nikolas

----------------
Nikolas Haass
nhaass AT yahoo.com
Sydney, NSW




-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Eric.Vanderduys AT csiro.au
Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 3:10 PM
To: tarburton.m AT optusnet.com.au; write53 AT bigpond.net.au
Cc: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?

Hi all, 

So far as I can tell CBCs are permanent in Lawn Hill, Musselbrook area.
Every time I've been there in winter they've been there. 

Hooroo, 

Eric Vanderduys
Technical Officer
CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
Phone: +61 7 4753 8529 | Fax: +61 7 4753 8600 | Mobile: 0437 330 961
eric.vanderduys AT csiro.au | www.csiro.au |
www.csiro.au/people/Eric.Vanderduys.html
Address: CSIRO, PMB PO, Aitkenvale, Qld 4814. Deliveries: CSIRO, ATSIP, Bld
145 James Cook Drive, James Cook University Douglas Campus, Townsville Qld
4814, AUSTRALIA


-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Michael Tarburton
Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 1:20 PM
To: Alastair Silcock
Cc: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?

G'day Alastair

Not quite in the NT, but just into Qld, we have had Channel-billed Cuckoos
at Lawn Hill Station and Gregory Downs CV Park 25-28 July 2009.  This is in
the southern Gulf Country.

Cheers & Happy birding


Mike


On 18/07/2014, at 11:55 AM, Alastair Silcock wrote:

> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
>


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: "Experience the Wild" <mike AT experiencethewild.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:03:11 +0930

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike Jarvis [mailto:experiencethewild AT gmail.com] On Behalf Of
Experience the Wild
Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 2:30 PM
To: 'Alastair Silcock'
Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?

Hello Alastair,

I have heard CBC at Aurora recently.

My winter records of CBC are as follows:-
2014
July 5  - Mary River Wilderness Retreat, Arnhem Highway May 28 - Yellow
Waters, Kakadu
2013
July 1 - Corroboree Park
June 6 - Mary River Wilderness Retreat, Arnhem Highway
2012
July 21 - Ubirr, Kakadu
July 14 - Bird Billabong, Arnhem Highway May 26 - Ubirr, Kakadu

Regards
Mike Jarvis
Experience the Wild
www.experiencethewild.com.au

-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Alastair Silcock
Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 11:26 AM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?

Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?

On July 9, a large long grey bird flew out in front of me on an early
morning walk near the Kakadu Aurora Hotel just west of the South Alligator
River. Given the size & colour, I can't imagine what else it could have
been.  Even in the split second, I thought I would have seen the bill easily
but did not.

Are they ever seen in winter in the Top End? (last week being my first
visit).

regards
Alastair
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org



_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Bird Atlas data RFI
From: Neil Shelley <nmshelley AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:25:04 +1000
Have you tried contacting Andrew Silcocks at BirdLife Australia?

On Friday, 18 July 2014,  wrote:

> Greeting Birdos,
>
> I'm sending this email with my black-throated finch recovery team hat on -
> I'm trying to track down some background information about a record of a
> black-throated finch that appears to have originated from Atlas data.
>
> If anyone can advise as to who I might contact that may be able to provide
> metadata (provided it's not confidential) for Atlas records, would you mind
> please passing on either their details or having them contact me?
>
> Regards,
>
> Eric Vanderduys
> Technical Officer
> CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
> Phone: +61 7 4753 8529 | Fax: +61 7 4753 8600 | Mobile: 0437 330 961
> eric.vanderduys AT csiro.au | www.csiro.au |
> www.csiro.au/people/Eric.Vanderduys.html
> Address: CSIRO, PMB PO, Aitkenvale, Qld 4814. Deliveries: CSIRO, ATSIP,
> Bld 145 James Cook Drive, James Cook University Douglas Campus, Townsville
> Qld 4814, AUSTRALIA
>
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org 
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
>
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: "Paul Doyle" <paulodoyle AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:26:49 +1000
Hi,
Not NT, I had one at Daintree Village, QLD last week.
Paul

-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Michael Tarburton
Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 1:20 PM
To: Alastair Silcock
Cc: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?

G'day Alastair

Not quite in the NT, but just into Qld, we have had Channel-billed  
Cuckoos at Lawn Hill Station and Gregory Downs CV Park 25-28 July  
2009.  This is in the southern Gulf Country.

Cheers & Happy birding


Mike


On 18/07/2014, at 11:55 AM, Alastair Silcock wrote:

> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
>


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: <Eric.Vanderduys AT csiro.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 05:10:22 +0000
Hi all, 

So far as I can tell CBCs are permanent in Lawn Hill, Musselbrook area. Every 
time I've been there in winter they've been there. 


Hooroo, 

Eric Vanderduys
Technical Officer
CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
Phone: +61 7 4753 8529 | Fax: +61 7 4753 8600 | Mobile: 0437 330 961 
eric.vanderduys AT csiro.au | www.csiro.au | 
www.csiro.au/people/Eric.Vanderduys.html 

Address: CSIRO, PMB PO, Aitkenvale, Qld 4814. Deliveries: CSIRO, ATSIP, Bld 145 
James Cook Drive, James Cook University Douglas Campus, Townsville Qld 4814, 
AUSTRALIA 



-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of 
Michael Tarburton 

Sent: Friday, 18 July 2014 1:20 PM
To: Alastair Silcock
Cc: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?

G'day Alastair

Not quite in the NT, but just into Qld, we have had Channel-billed Cuckoos at 
Lawn Hill Station and Gregory Downs CV Park 25-28 July 2009. This is in the 
southern Gulf Country. 


Cheers & Happy birding


Mike


On 18/07/2014, at 11:55 AM, Alastair Silcock wrote:

> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
>


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Bird Atlas data RFI
From: <Eric.Vanderduys AT csiro.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 04:27:46 +0000
Greeting Birdos, 

I'm sending this email with my black-throated finch recovery team hat on - I'm 
trying to track down some background information about a record of a 
black-throated finch that appears to have originated from Atlas data. 


If anyone can advise as to who I might contact that may be able to provide 
metadata (provided it's not confidential) for Atlas records, would you mind 
please passing on either their details or having them contact me? 


Regards,  

Eric Vanderduys
Technical Officer
CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences
Phone: +61 7 4753 8529 | Fax: +61 7 4753 8600 | Mobile: 0437 330 961 
eric.vanderduys AT csiro.au | www.csiro.au | 
www.csiro.au/people/Eric.Vanderduys.html 

Address: CSIRO, PMB PO, Aitkenvale, Qld 4814. Deliveries: CSIRO, ATSIP, Bld 145 
James Cook Drive, James Cook University Douglas Campus, Townsville Qld 4814, 
AUSTRALIA 


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Purple-crowned and Musk Lorikeets in Sept near Adelaide
From: "Donald G. Kimball" <ibwonet1 AT gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 21:25:58 -0700
If you had to pick a motel or location to park yourself for a base to see
both Purple-crowned and Musk Lorikeets in Sept in an area where the birds
are somewhat or very accumstomed to seeing people where would you pick?

Obviously I am asking this question as a major helps for me when I come to
Aus later this year.  I so appreciate birding-aus as a valuable travel
guide for someone like me who is 1000's of miles away at the moment!


Cheers to all my mates here!

Don Kimball
Polytelis Media
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: Andrew Taylor <andrewt AT cse.unsw.edu.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 13:26:49 +1000
On Fri, Jul 18, 2014 at 11:55:40AM +1000, Alastair Silcock wrote:
> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
> On July 9, a large long grey bird flew out in front of me on an
> early morning walk near the Kakadu Aurora Hotel just west of the
> South Alligator River. Given the size & colour, I can't imagine
> what else it could have been.  Even in the split second, I thought
> I would have seen the bill easily but did not.  Are they ever seen
> in winter in the Top End? (last week being my first visit).

Prior to this year only 2 July  records of Channel-billed Cuckoo from
NT according to Richard Noske on NT Birding.

But late June I heard on 2 days a CBC in Jabiru, and Richard's comment
was prompted by CBC sightings around Darwin.

Andrew

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 12:49:54 +0930
Iíve seen Channel-billed Cuckoo at Mary River and Cooinda in late June.


Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835








On 18 Jul 2014, at 11:25 am, Alastair Silcock  wrote:

> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
> 
> On July 9, a large long grey bird flew out in front of me on an early morning 
walk near the Kakadu Aurora Hotel just west of the South Alligator River. Given 
the size & colour, I can't imagine what else it could have been. Even in the 
split second, I thought I would have seen the bill easily but did not. 

> 
> Are they ever seen in winter in the Top End? (last week being my first 
visit). 

> 
> regards
> Alastair
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: Michael Tarburton <tarburton.m AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 13:19:55 +1000
G'day Alastair

Not quite in the NT, but just into Qld, we have had Channel-billed  
Cuckoos at Lawn Hill Station and Gregory Downs CV Park 25-28 July  
2009.  This is in the southern Gulf Country.

Cheers & Happy birding


Mike


On 18/07/2014, at 11:55 AM, Alastair Silcock wrote:

> Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?
>


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Channel-billed cuckoos overwinter?
From: Alastair Silcock <write53 AT bigpond.net.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 11:55:40 +1000
Do channel-billed cuckoos overwinter in the Northern Territory?

On July 9, a large long grey bird flew out in front of me on an early morning 
walk near the Kakadu Aurora Hotel just west of the South Alligator River. Given 
the size & colour, I can't imagine what else it could have been. Even in the 
split second, I thought I would have seen the bill easily but did not. 


Are they ever seen in winter in the Top End? (last week being my first visit).

regards
Alastair
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: RFI - Paluma.
From: Jude Lattaway <2roaminoz AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 09:30:57 +1000
In a couple of days time I am heading to Paluma just north of
Townsville.  Reading John Bransbury's book  "Where to find Birds in
Australia"  (pge 213/214) he mentions a tea house popular with
birders.   I'm guessing as this book is now a few years old there
might be many tea houses at the Paluma Village.  Can anyone point me
in the right direction please.

Jude

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Good News for Aussie Swiftlets
From: Michael Tarburton <tarburton.m AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 09:18:34 +1000
Good News for Aussie Swiftlets

Shirl & I have just spent 5 weeks censusing the swiftlets at  
Chillagoe-Mungana, West of Cairns.  The good news is that the last  
two seasons have received normal rainfall, unlike the previous four  
years, where La Nina has washed many nests from the roofs of the  
caves.  You can see some of the damage in the photos included in the  
last two papers at the end of this web page

http://www.swiftsoftheworld.info/spplist.htm

At Mudlark and Hercules caves where there had been no birds roosting  
or breeding in 2011, we found two and ten birds roosting.  At  
Swiftlet Scallops #2 Cave where only 2 birds were sleeping in 2011,  
we found 20 roosting birds in June 2014.

Some other colonies had increased, but many are still lower than  
normal.  This is particularly true where feral cats have also been  
hitting the colonies at the same time as the rain has been washing  
nests off the walls and drowning eggs and birds.

The last bit of good news is that we found three colonies that were  
unknown to us previously.  One of them had 550 birds, the others 26,  
and 60+.

Happy birding

Mike


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Southport Pelagics.
From: Paul Walbridge <Paul.Walbridge AT health.qld.gov.au>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 08:12:16 +1000
Hi All, I've postponed this Saturdays' 19th July pelagic from Southport due to 
a gale warning being issued. This trip will now be conducted on the following 
Saturday July 26th and there are now several vacancies for those interested. 
With a sustained southerly blow as is now happening next weekend could turn up 
some goodies. Contact Paul Walbridge: 


Paul.Walbridge AT health.qld.gov.au (PH) 
(W) 07 3139 4584 (H) 07 3256 4124. 



******************************************************************************** 

This email, including any attachments sent with it, is confidential and for the 
sole use of the intended recipient(s). This confidentiality is not waived or 
lost, if you receive it and you are not the intended recipient(s), or if it is 
transmitted/received in error. 

Any unauthorised use, alteration, disclosure, distribution or review of this 
email is strictly prohibited. The information contained in this email, 
including any attachment sent with it, may be subject to a statutory duty of 
confidentiality if it relates to health service matters. 

If you are not the intended recipient(s), or if you have received this email in 
error, you are asked to immediately notify the sender by telephone collect on 
Australia +61 1800 198 175 or by return email. You should also delete this 
email, and any copies, from your computer system network and destroy any hard 
copies produced. 

If not an intended recipient of this email, you must not copy, distribute or 
take any action(s) that relies on it; any form of disclosure, modification, 
distribution and/or publication of this email is also prohibited. 

Although Queensland Health takes all reasonable steps to ensure this email does 
not contain malicious software, Queensland Health does not accept 
responsibility for the consequences if any person's computer inadvertently 
suffers any disruption to services, loss of information, harm or is infected 
with a virus, other malicious computer programme or code that may occur as a 
consequence of receiving this email. 

Unless stated otherwise, this email represents only the views of the sender and 
not the views of the Queensland Government. 


********************************************************************************** 


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Scar tissue on P Currawong's legs
From: "calyptorhynchus ." <calyptorhynchus AT gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 07:39:18 +1000
Silly me, I thought the rules had been changed to allow small pictures
(below 100k). Anyway, the condition has been diagnosed as Scaly Mite.

cheers

John


On 18 July 2014 07:23, Greg and Val Clancy  wrote:

> Hi John,
>
> There was no photo attached or link on Birding-aus.
>
> Regards
> Greg
>
> Dr Greg. P. Clancy
> Ecologist and Birding-wildlife Guide
> | PO Box 63 Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
> | 02 6649 3153  | 0429 601 960
> http://www.gregclancyecologistguide.com
> http://gregswildliferamblings.blogspot.com.au/
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message----- From: calyptorhynchus . Sent: Thursday, July
> 17, 2014 9:18 PM To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org ; Canberra Birds
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] Scar tissue on P Currawong's legs
> I took this picture nr Bateman's Bay today. It looks as if this Pied
> Currawong has scar tissue on the upper surface of its feet... unless all
> Currawongs have gothic adornments like this?
>
> --
> John Leonard
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
>



-- 
John Leonard
Canberra
Australia
www.jleonard.net

I want to be with the 9,999 other things.
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Scar tissue on P Currawong's legs
From: "calyptorhynchus ." <calyptorhynchus AT gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 21:18:39 +1000
I took this picture nr Bateman's Bay today. It looks as if this Pied
Currawong has scar tissue on the upper surface of its feet... unless all
Currawongs have gothic adornments like this?

-- 
John Leonard
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Ashmore October 2014
From: John Weigel <jweigel AT reptilepark.com.au>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 19:59:52 +1000
Hi Chris and Jenny,

The 20 - 27 October Ashmore trip will be aboard the Flying Fish V - the vessel 
that has made the trip in all recent ventures besides this April. It isn't as 
big as the vessel used in April, but is a wonderfully comfortable ride all the 
same, well appointed with wonderful meals and fantastic snorkel-diving between 
day trips to the islands. The nightly bird-count debriefings led by Mike Carter 
are priceless! Brief details are at: 
http://kimberleybirdwatching.com.au/ashmore-reef-october-2014/ . As Jenny 
alluded, there are no guarantees of future trips of this nature, and anyone who 
has yet to experience the adventure of birding the northwest seas, the islands 
of Ashmore Reef and the Lacerpede Islands, I wouldn't dither. Hope to see you 
in Broome in about three months' time! 


John Weigel

Dear Jenny,,
We went on the Reef Prince in April 2014 to Ashmore Reef and yes, it was very 
very comfortable.  But Iím not sure that they are using the same boat on the 
October trip.   I would recommend that interested parties double check which 
boat is going.

Cheers
Chris


Chris Melrose
cmelrose099 AT gmail.com
phone numbers: 
+61 (2)9438 3635 (Home) 
+61 407 705 140 (mobile)


On 17 Jul 2014, at 2:46 pm, Jenny Spry  wrote:

> Hi all,
> 
> Following up on an earlier email I have just found out there are still 2
> spots left on this October's trip. If you are interested please contact
> George Swann at:
> info AT kimberleybirdwatching.com.au
> 
> If you want to see how hard the trip is going to be (smile), have a look at
> the boat on the brochure at George's website, talk about a beautiful
> looking birdwatching come tropical cruising boat:
> 
> 
http://kimberleybirdwatching.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/ashmore-brochure.pdf 

> The brochure shows details for last April's trip. This trip is 19th to 28th
> October.
> 
> Can't you just imagine sitting on that top deck as cetacean, turtles, sea
> snakes and tropical birds pass us in the sunshine? - whoops, sorry about
> that embarrassing bit of rave, I am totally biased 'cos I have done the
> trip once already and want to make sure this trip happens (smile).
> 
> But there is a serious side to the trip too. The trips have been going
> every October or November since the 1990s, at least, and as George Swann
> said in an email "I think its important that we keep the trip going every
> year as it keeps Ashmore in Australian Birders mind plus we continue to
> collect data that is building into a huge data set for the Islands and the
> Browse Basin that is undergoing massive development with the oil and gas
> industry."
> 
> cheers
> 
> Jenny
> http://jenniferspryausbirding.blogspot.com.au/
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org



 http://kimberleybirdwatching.com.au/ashmore-reef-october-2014/





John Weigel AM
Australian Reptile Park
PO 737 Gosford NSW 2250
(02) 4340 1022
jweigel AT reptilepark.com.au
www.reptilepark.com.au
www.devilark.com.au
 



_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
From: Tim Dolby <Tim.Dolby AT vu.edu.au>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 08:09:55 +0000
Really interesting to hear your comments about the Riverina Glossy 
Black-Cockatoo Neville, thanks - especially your thought about them being not 
be as isolated as some think. Itís been noted that they can move over 
considerable distances so, yes, the movement between places such as West 
Wyalong and Narrandera is not be out of the equation. 


In terms of the Kangaroo Island birds, Iíd always thought they were linked to 
the east coast birds, around Mallacoota. The reason for their isolation was 
loss of habitat along the South Australian and Victorian coast. However, if 
they are capable of traveling long distances, perhaps in good years they may 
have moved also the river systems, along the Murrumbidgee and the Murray River, 
n to coastal SA. Iíd be interested to know if there were any historical records 
between the Riverina and Kangeroo Island? I canít find any. I suppse another 
option is that they were isolated (along with a number of other species) at the 
end of the Pleistocene, approx. 10,000 years ago, when the water levels dropped 
in the Murray Basin, changing the landscape in between. 


Cheers,

Tim

________________________________________
From: Neville Schrader OAM [nschrader AT bigpond.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 8:09 PM
To: Tim Dolby
Cc: birding-aus
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, 
Pulletop and Galore Hill 


Hi Tim,

             As you, the distribution of the Riverina population of the
Glossy Black Cockatoo, has intrigued me for some time.
I've come to the conclusion that the Riverina population is probably not as
isolated as literature would suggest.  If you look at records in bird
reports, over the
last 30 years, it becomes clear that there is no barrier and if you compare
the distribution of Allocasuarina verticillataa a picture starts to emerge.

Bob Miller a beekeeper from I think Griffith or Leeton, who travelled
extensively in central NSW ( meet him when I lived at Ivanhoe in the 1970
introduced by John Hobbs) observed them at a large number of locations,
(unfortunately I'm not aware what happened to his records), but he observed
the species on isolated ranges, mountains and ridges with populations of
verticillata broadly from Nymagee to Narrandera, including places like Mt
Hope, Tottenham, down to Narrandera.

I think Bob published a paper in Australian Birds back in the 70's.
Llewellyn also published a paper in the Emu on the confusion between the two
species red tailed black cockatoos in the Riverina and he put foreword the
theory on the relationship with the Kangaroo Island population. I've seen
nothing since. Christidis and Boles makes no comment.

Besides the locations you mention in recent years, Glossy Black's have been
recorded from Trangie, Tottenham, West Wyalong, Back Creek SF east of Wyong,
south end of Lake Cowal. From this site you can see the Weddin Mtns, not an
unreasonable distance to travel for a bird of this size.

They have also been observed by local landholders ( confirmed by the fact
they were feeding on She-oaks) at Bogan Gate west of Parkes, Gobondery
Range, Albert and Bogan R. near Peak Hill (Minore, Hervey Range, Bumberry
Nangar, Conimba etc are east of these
locations, all which have populations of Glossy's). The Goonoo Goonoo
SF/Conservation area also holds a good population and is in flying distance,
I would suggest.

I've always considered there is a couple of ridges west of Mt. Hope that
would be worth investigating, but dirt roads and isolation
is a problem. As is some of ridges between Hillston and Lake Cargelligo
worth a look at.

I guess as more birdwatchers travel west and the roads improve the
distribution of the Glossy Black Cockatoo will become clearer, but until
then the  "urban myth". will continue with the distribution of the Glossy
black Cockatoo and the isolated population.

By the way a good report brings back some memories.

Good Birding

Neville Schrader





-----Original Message-----
From: Tim Dolby
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 3:12 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough,
Pulletop and Galore Hill

Hi everyone, for something to do I've written up a trip/bird/plant report
for the Riverina - an area that I've been spending quite a bit of time in
recently.  The full report with some images is also on my website at
http://tim-dolby.blogspot.com.au. If you do get around to reading it, I hope
you like it!

Cheers,

Tim Dolby
_______________________

Birding the Riverina - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill

The following report covers some birdwatching locations in the Riverina,
including Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest, Fivebough Wetland,
Leeton and Tuckerbil Wetland, Pulletop Nature Reserve and Galore Hill Nature
Reserve. I've visited most of these sites about half a dozen times, so this
report is a bit of a rundown of those experiences, plus a bit of background
knowledge thrown in.

In 1817 John Oxley, the first Europeans to visit the region, wrote in his
journal "the weather as usual fine and clear, which is the greatest comfort
we enjoy in these deserts, abandoned as they seem to be by every living
creature capable of getting out of them." How wrong he was - from a
birdwatching and wildlife point of view, the Riverina is a seriously
under-estimated birding destination. By contrast with Oxley views, when
early settler Henry Osborne climbed to the top of Galore Hill in 1847 he
shouted "There's land enough and galore for me". Galore is an Irish word
that means plenty. This was perhaps a bad omen in terms of the clearing of
native vegetation, however it does show that the Riverina is an area of
contrasts, certainly in terms of its habitats, and it appeals to different
people.

One reason Iíve written this report is because a lot of Australian birders
travel to northern Victoria, visiting places such as Chiltern-Mt Pilot
National Park and Barmah National Park but seem to stop at the Murray River.
This may be because there's relatively little information about bird sites
just north of the Murray, so hereís my own personal rundown of these places.

For a while the Riverina was a popular destination for birdwatchers, due
mainly to the Australian Birdfair, which was held each year in Leeton.
Fantastically organised by Mike Schultz, unfortunately this event hasnít
taken place since 2011, and a new Australian Bird Fair has started in
Sydney's Olympic Park. In many ways it's a great shame, I attended the
Leeton Birdfair in 2010 (or was it 2009?) and it was fabulous! There was a
great program, it was organised by some great people, and it was in a great
location.

The Riverina is a also great stop over site, stop there when you're heading
to Round Hill Nature Reserve and Lake Cargelligo, stop there if you're
heading from Melbourne to Brisbane (and beyond) or vice versa, and stop
there if you're heading from Sydney to Adelaide or vice versa.

Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest
The main site I want to concentrate on is Cocoparra National Park (8358 ha)
and the adjacent Binya State Forest (4170 ha), mainly because they are both
a rare woodland remnant, and they are a bit of a jewel in the Riverina
crown. I've visited these parks a number of  times; there's some dramatic
scenery, rocky outcrops and, in places, the rich red soils contrast
wonderfully with the greens of the trees, particularly the native pines.

First gazetted as a national park in 1969, Cocoparra National Park is
located 20 km east of Griffith on the Burley Griffin Way. When I've visited
I've pitched a tent at the excellent Woolshed Flat camp ground, or visited
from Leeton. As with most national parks bush camping is also permitted away
from roads and facilities. The Cocoparra Range is part of the traditional
lands of the Wiradjuri nation, and there are ~60 known Aboriginal sites,
mainly open campsites and scarred trees.

Wattle Drive - note my parking style! Lesson 1: car parking technique for
birdwatchers, follow these steps. See what you think is an unusual bird,
stop quickly in the middle of the track and leave your car door wide open
(this is important), and then walk off aimlessly looking for the mystery
bird. Ultimately you want to repeat these steps as much as is respectfully
possible.

Cocoparra's plants
Before talking about the birds, I thought I spend sometime writing about the
great plants at Cocoparra and Binya. With over 450 species recorded, these
are linked to different habitat types, each species varying according to
soil type.

On the Ridges
Cocoparra is a series of ranges, with exposed rough exposed rocks. On the
high ridges you'll find Black Cypress-pine (Callitris endlicheri), Dwyerís
Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri), Currawang (Acacia sparsiflora), Green
Tea-Tree (Leptospermum trivalve), and there's some heathland dominated by
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata), areas where it's worth looking for Shy
Heathwren.

The Slopes
In the dry sclerophyll forest on the rising foot and midslopes you find
native pines such as Black (Callitris endlicheri) and White Cypress-pine (C.
glaucophylla) and Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Eucalypts
here include Dwyer's Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus Dwyeri), Mugga Ironbark (E.
sideroxylon), Red Stringybark (E. macrorhyncha), Grey Box (E. microcarpa)
and the wonderful Bimble Box (E. ucalyptus populnea), with it's glossy and
rounded dark green leaves. This particular habitat mix is considered to be
regionally endangered Ė with less than 10% remaining of its original
extent - and is also the habitat type that supports locally endangered
Glossy Black-Cockatoo (discussed below).

Wattles on the slopes includes Currawong (Acacia doratoxylon), Yarran (A.
homalophylla), Currawang (A. sparsiflora), Deane's Wattle (A. deanei) and
Boree (A. pendula), while other trees here include Kurrajong (Brachychiton
populneum), Rosewood (Heterodendrum oleifolium) and Cherry Ballart
(Exocarpos cupressiformis).

When I visited Cocoparra just a few weeks ago the slopes were covered in
Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana). A spectacular climber with large
white-light red tube flowers about 15mm long, it's a close relative of the
Bower Vine (Pandorea jasmanoides) grown as a garden plant.. These flowers
cascaded from the tops of shrubs and trees along the Mt Brogden walk.
Pandorea pandorana seems to be a highly variable species, for instance in
other places that I've seen them they've flowered in Spring. However, here
at Cocoparra this year they were flowering profusely mid-winter.

The Woodlands
In the open grassy woodlands, and along the parks rocky creek lines and
sheltered gullies, you can find Blakely's Red Gum (Eucalyptus blakelyi),
Yellow Box (E. melliodora)  Dwyer's Mallee Gum (E. Dwyeri), Red Stringybark
(E. macrorhyncha), Bimble Box (E. populnea) and

Shrubs and Herbs Ground cover is normally sparse but after rain all the
grasses and herbs come to life - look for Oval-leaf or Purple Mintbush
(Prostanthera ovalifolia), Curry Bush (Cassinia laevis), Sticky Everlasting
(Xerochrysum viscosum), Rusty Spider-Flower (Grevillea floribunda), Common
Fringe-myrtle (Calytrix tetragona), Grey Guinea Flower (Hibbertia
obtusifolia), Nodding Blue Lily (Stypandra glauca), Smooth Flax Lily
(Dianella laevis), Urn Heath (Melichrus urceolatus), Australian Bluebell
(Wahlenbergia stricta) and Sandhill Goodenia (Goodenia willisiana). Native
daisies include Cut-leaved Daisy (Brachyscome multifida), Variable Daisy (B.
ciliaris) and Showy Daisy (B. ciliocarpa), while the tussock grasses are
Spear Grass (Austrostipa nodosa), Variable Spear Grass (Stipa variabilis)
and Wallaby Grass (Danthonia linkii).

There are a few rare plants occurring in the park. This includes Cocoparra
Pomaderris (Pomaderris cocoparrana), which is confined to rocky higher
altitudes areas in the Cocoparra Ranges - it's easily recognised by its
ovate leaves with a green upper surface and velvety, grey under surface, and
a bright yellow flowers in spring. It was once thought to be the more
widespread Pomaderris andromedifolia, until it was revealed to be distinct
separate species. Other rare plants include Club-leafed or Dainty Phebalium
(Phebalium obcordatum) and Irongrass (Lomandra patens).

Cocoparra's mammals and reptiles
In terms of native mammals in the park, Cocoparra is a bit of refuge. I've
seen Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), both Eastern (Macropus giganteus) and
Western Grey Kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), Red Kangaroo (M. rufus), Black
(Swamp) Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), while Red-necked Wallaby (M.
rufrogriseus) have been recorded near Cocoparra but not in the park itself -
probably the most westerly population for this species in the NSW.

Smaller mammals in the park remain largely elusive. There are Brushtail
Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) and the diurnal Yellow-footed Antechinus
(Antechinus flavipes), both relatively common. Most other small mammals are
known only by their remains identified in owl pellets, such as Rattus sp.,
i.e. Bush Rat (Rattus fuscipes), Bandicoot (Isoodon sp.) and native mice
(Pseudomys sp.). Eight species of bat have been recorded, the most common
being the White-striped Mastiff bat (Tadarida australis) as well as the
vulnerable Eastern Long-eared Bat (Nyctophilus timoriensis). Feral animals
in the park include Cat, Fox, Goat (quite common, estimated numbers to be
~2000, Iíve seen them on virtually every walks Iíve done), Rabbit and Iíve
seen signs of wild Pig.

There is a variety of reptiles in the park, notably the Nobbi Dragon
(Amphibolurus nobbi) and the Tree Crevice-skink or Tree Skink (Egernia
striolata). Both occur in the rocky areas along the Mt Brogden walk. The
Nobbi Dragon is similar to a Jacky Lizard (A. muricatus), but has a
distinctive stripe along its backs which is often pale-coloured or even
yellow, while the best place to look for Tree Skink is on the trunk of a
large eucalypt that have peeling loose bark and is surrounded by piles of
rocks, broken branches, dead leaves and some decaying hollow logs. Other
reptiles include Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbatus), Lace Monitor (Varanus
varius), Wood Gecko (Diplodactylus vittatus) and Mulga Snake (Pseudechis
australis).

The birds and bird sites
Cocoparra and Binya were classified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife
International, mainly because it supports a relatively large populations of
the near threatened Painted Honeyeater (the highest number of birds recorded
at one site at one time was 22) and contains Diamond Firetail. While it
always great to see these two species, Cocoparra has many other birding
attractions. For instance you can target birds such as Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, Black-eared
Cuckoo, Striped Honeyeater, Turquoise Parrot as well as the wonderful mallee
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot and Blue Bonnet - here
it's the yellow-vented ssp. haematogaster. In "good years" Cocoparra
attracts birds such as Cockatiel, Budgerigar, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo,
Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater. It's also always nice to see Splendid and
Variegated Fairy-wren, nice raptors in the area include Spotted Harrier and
Black and Peregrine Falcon and, at night, I've heard Spotted Nightjar.

The roadside native pines along Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route
Rd is a good place to look for White-browed Treecreeper. They are quite
active while foraging on the rough trunks of Belah, Buloke and native
pines - listen for their trilled, cricket-like chirrup call, especially
during the breeding season. Along the Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock
Route Road there are also scattered area of Bimble Box (Eucalyptus populnea)
which tend to be covered in Dropping Mistletoe (Amyema pendula). In late
spring and summer this is the place to look here for Painted Honeyeater -
like the White-browed Treecreeper, there call is distinctive, a loud
georgi - georgi. I've also seen Spotted Harrier alongside the Whitton Stock
Route Road.

Forestry Hut
The Forestry Hut is one of the least known birding site in Binya. It's
located on the southern side of the Burley Griffin Way, approx 200m east of
the Whitton Stock Route intersection (-34.242500, 146.237778). Access is via
Pine Drive - it may be impassable in wet conditions, but you can easily walk
in. This is another good spot to look for White-browed Treecreeper, and it
can be a great birding spot generally, especially during spring flowering.
This is the only area that I've see Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater, and
here I've also seen Hooded Robin, White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Mulga
Parrot, Blue Bonnet, and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren.

Wattle Dam and Moss Dam
Cocoparra and Binya hold NSW's most westerly populations of Turquoise
Parrot. A good spot to look for them is around Wattle Dam and Moss Dam,
particularly in the mornings. Both located off Barry Scenic Drive (an
excellent 2WD road). Aside from the Turqs, around these dams you can also
see Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot, Rainbow Bee-eater, Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren, Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeater, Inland,
Chestnut-rumped and Yellow Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella,
Apostlebird and Bar-shouldered Dove - the south-western-most population for
this species.

Spring Hill and Falcon Falls
The Spring Hill Picnic Area can be teeming with birds, particularly when
there are mixed-species flocks about. Here there's a chance of seeing
Turquoise Parrot, as well as Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Brown
Treecreeper, Grey-crowned Babbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Yellow and Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Western Gerygone,
Jacky Winter, Hooded Robin, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch.

From the picnic area take the walk to Falcon Falls, where the scenery is
spectacular. These falls are appropriately named after Peregrine Falcon,
which breed on the cliffs in the area. Here there are also occasional
sightings of Glossy Black-Cockatoo.

Binya Forest Drive
The habitat along the Binya Forest Drive is dominated by native pines - it's
worth stopping where ever you see birdlife. It's particularly good for
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Blue Bonnet, and Turquoise, Mulga and
Red-rumped Parrot. Along this drive I've also seen Striped Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Crested Bellbird, Splendid Fairy-wren, Brown and
White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, and also heard Painted
Honeyeater. This area is probably the best spot to look for Gilbertís
Whistler.

Note: that the Binya Forest Drive may be impassable in wet conditions. Also
note that the the Parakeet Drive connects the Binya Forest Drive and Barry
Scenic Drive.

Mt Brogden and Glossy Black-Cockatoo
One of the best places to look for Glossy Black-Cockatoo is along the Mt
Brogden walking track.  This is the endangered Riverina population of Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, birds that are largely restricted to hills and low ridges
with areas of Drooping She-Oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Glossy
Black-Cockatoo then need suitable large hollows in Grey Box (Eucalyptus
microcarpa) or Dwyer's Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri). Unfortunately much of this
type of habitat has been cleared and is fragmented.

The social and conservation context of the Glossy Black-Cockatoo in the
Riverina intrigues me. As a population they are disjunct from other Glossy
Black-Cockatoo in NSW, and it now seems that the genetic link to the nearest
easterly NSW birds is uncertain. Indeed there is some evidence that the
Riverina birds are more closely related to the Kangaroo Island subspecies
halmaturinus - only a mere 1000 km away - which is remarkable! The fact that
the Riverina Glossy Black-Cockatoo are isolated and that they may be linked
to the Kangaroo Island birds indicates that this population has a very
significant conservation value.

[Note: If you don't see Glossy Black-Cockatoo in Cocoparra National Park,
they've also been recorded in the Narrandera Range, Brobenah Hills,
McPhersons Range, Galore Hill, Lachlan Range, Naradhan Range, Jimberoo State
Forest and Gap Dam State Forest.]

Mt Brogden is also one of the few spots in Cocoparra where Chestnut
Quail-thrush have been recorded, which may be present in the park in small
numbers - aside from that, the nearest population of Chestnut Quail-thrush
is said to be Loughnan Nature Reserve near Hillston and the bird at Round
Hill and Nombinnie.

Store Creek and Jack Creek Walking Tracks
The Store Creek walking track begins at the picnic area and walks you
through a nice section of Cypress Pine and Bimble Box. It ends at stunning
natural amphitheatre formed by the junction of two creeks. It's a good track
to look for Crested Bellbird, Red-capped Robin, Speckled Warbler, Striped
and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow and Inland Thornbill,
Splendid Fairy-wren, Double-barred Finch and Diamond Firetail. In spring,
I've seen Black-eared Cuckoo, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow and
Western Gerygone here.

I've seen similar birds along the equally spectacular Jack Creek walking
track - it a vast gorge, walk through some gullies and exposed ridges to
three lookouts that provide views of the gorge. One of the features of the
Jack Creek picnic area is that White-winged Chough nest above the picnic
tables.

Woolshed Flat
There's a very pleasant camping area at Woolshed Flat. Around the  campsite
and in the surrounding bush I've seen Emu, Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck,
Blue Bonnet, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, Yellow-plumed and Blue-faced
Honeyeater, Noisy and Little Friarbird, Speckled Warbler, Southern
Whiteface,  Dusky Woodswallow, Restless Flycatcher, Pallid Cuckoo, Rainbow
Bee-eater, White-winged Trilller, Western Gerygone, Restless Flycatcher, and
Rufous Songlark, and thornills such as Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow, and
Yellow-rumped. I've not seen them, but there are occasional sightings of
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo around Woolshed.

At night I've heard Spotted Nightjar, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, Southern
Boobook, and Tawny Frogmouth - the frogmouth here are the central
Australian/dry country ssp. brachypterus.

Fivebough Wetland
A fantastic and very large Ramsar-listed wetland, Fivebough Wetland (400 ha)
is a must visit place when passing through the area. With an impressive one
hundred and eighty species recorded, including eighty waterbird species,
you'd be stupid not to stop! The main car park is about 2 km north-east of
Leeton's town centre on Petersham Rd (-34.535624, 146.420576). It's a
surprisingly small car park for such a large reserve, so don't blink or
you'll miss it. Leeton has a range of accommodation options - but if you're
looking for somewhere interesting to stay, I've found that a particular good
place is the grand Historic Hydro Motor Inn; despite the name, it's actually
a grand old motel. The restaurant at the Inn is called the Freckled Duck -
and no, before you ask, duck wasn't on the menu!

The birding around the car park, and the nearby planted section of gums, is
surprisingly good - I've found Little Friarbird, Yellow-throated Miner,
Singing and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow-rumped
Thornbill, Weebill, Western Gerygone, Striated Pardalote and Zebra Finch.

The 5 km of walking trails begin from the car park, and lead to a number of
viewing mounds and two excellent bird hides. The track first takes you to
along All Weather Walking Trail to the Bittern bird hide. Along the first
section of reeds, I've occasionally seen Brown Quail feeding in the grassy
fringes of the track.

This bird hide overlooks a portion of wetland specifically managed for the
relatively rare Australasian Bittern: in season, their presence may be
revealed by their repeated booming call, heard mainly at night. There is
also a chance of Australian Little Bittern.

From the Bittern bird hide, and the nearby viewing area, you may also see
Glossy Ibis, Magpie Goose, Brolga, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel,
Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and Black-tailed Native-hen. It's
always worth scanning the exposed muddy edges for Baillonís, Australian
Spotted and Spotless Crake.

A range of summer shorebirds visit the wetland, such as Lathamís Snipe,
Black-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Wood, Marsh and Sharp-tailed
Sandpiper, and Red-necked Stint, and look out for Whiskered and White-winged
Black Tern, White throated Needletail and Fork-tailed Swift. Rarities
recorded at the wetland include Little Curlew, Pectoral Sandpiper, Long-toed
Stint and Oriental Pratincole.

The shire councilís sewage ponds - known as Duck Pond - are overlooked by a
bird hide on the eastern side of Fivebough. This is a great spot for
waterfowl such as Musk, Blue-billed, Freckled and Pink-eared Duck, Plumed
Whistling-Duck and Australasian Shoveler.

The Hooey Rd Lookout (-34.523651, 146.440815) is located on the other of
Fivebough Swamp. The Lookout provides a nice vantage point to scan the
wetland, with the best time for viewing at the end of the day, when large
numbers of Glossy Ibis fly in to roost for the night. Numbers vary from year
to year - the highest counts has been a staggering 20,000 in Nov 1995, and
15,000 in Nov 2005.

Tuckerbil Wetlands
Another wetland worth investigating in the area is Tuckerbil Wetland. It's a
large swamp north of Leeton. Situated in crop fields, it can be accessed via
Cantrill Rd 12 km north-west of Leeton. Drive up Cantrill Rd until you find
a picnic area adjacent an old sand quarry in a field.

The quarry has is good a place to see White-backed Swallow, Red-backed
Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater and Striated Pardalote, all which nest in the
quarry. When there is water in the swamp, it contains many of the birds
found at Fivebough. It's also a good place to see Blue Bonnet and Cockatiel.

Campbells Swamp
Aside from Swamp Tuckerbil and Fivebough Wetlands, Campbells Swamp just
north of Griffith (-34.229344, 146.031104) has some interesting birds - it's
a small shallow wetland, and has some nice areas of reeds and open water.
There's a nice bird hide constructed and boardwalk to get to it, and because
of its small size, it's possible to walk all the way around the swamp.
There's a good car park 1 km past the turn-off to Lake Wyangan.

I've not seen them, but when the water levels are right, it is a known site
for Australian Little Bittern and Australasian Bittern - and you might catch
up with Plumed Whistling-Duck, Freckled Duck, Magpie Goose, Baillon's Crake,
Australian Spotted Crake, Spotless Crake, Black-tailed Native-hen, and
Red-kneed Dotterel. Like Fivebough, when the water level is right, thousands
of Glossy Ibis may come to roost in the swamp each evening. And you
occasionally get waders such as Wood, Pectoral and Marsh Sandpiper.

An interesting walk is to cross the western fence of the swamp - or go
around - into the crown land and then head to the old cattle yards. This
minor land depression is edged with a single line of Bimble Box that act as
an ephemeral flood depressions, and can be good for birds.

BTW the Griffith Golf Course is one if the best sites in the region for
Major Mitchell Cockatoo and Blue Bonnet are usually there.

Pulletop Nature Reserve
Pulletop (145 ha) is a really interesting remnant area of the mallee located
north east of Cocoparra, 35 km north of Griffith. It's located just off the
Rankins Springs Road. Turn west when you get to Pulletop Rd, and the reserve
is about 4 km (-33.964751, 146.083791). It is worth noting that Pulletop Rd
is a really just a sandy track - when I was there it was in need of a good
grading, and may be impassable after rain.

The reserve has four species of mallee, White (Eucalyptus dumosa),
Narrow-leaf Red (E. leptophylla), Red Mallee (E. socialis) and Yorrell (E.
gracilis). These species dominate the reserve. There are some patches of
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata) and Mallee Cypress-pine (Callitris verrucosa)
that are intermixed with Streaked Wattle (Acacia lineata), Sweet Quandong
(Santalum acuminatum), Fringed Heath-myrtle (Micromyrtus ciliata) and
Wedge-leafed Hopbush (Dononea cuneata). There's also a small area of Bimble
Box (E. populnea) woodland in the south-west corner.

Rare plants in the reserve include Club-leafed Phebalium (Phebalium
obcordatum) and Rankins Springs Grevillea (Grevillea rosmarinifolia ssp
glabella), so look out for those. And look for native orchids such as Dwarf
Greenhood (Pterostylis nana) and the even smaller Midget Greenhood (P.
mutica), Blue Fingers (Caladenia caerulea) and Pink Fingers (C. carnea).

Due to this mallee mix, Pulletop is a great place to see parrots such as
Major Mitchellís Cockatoo, Cockatiel, Mallee Ringneck, Mulga Parrot,
Budgerigar and Blue Bonnet. It's also excellent for honeyeaters, such as
Yellow-plumed, White-fronted, Black, Singing, Painted Brown-headed,
Spiny-cheeked, Striped, White-eared and White-plumed Honeyeater,
Yellow-throated Miner and Crimson Chat - now that's not a bad list! You can
also see Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow,
Crested Bellbird, Varied Trilller, Rufous Songlark and Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren.

With great misfortunate, however, a few birds have gone missing from
Pulletop. Malleefowl and Red-lored Whistler were last seen in the mid-1980s
and are now considered extinct. The reserve was retained because it was felt
that this was a sufficient area to retain a viable population of these
species, which unfortunately does not seem to be the case. It's a real pity,
for instance Graeme Chapman photographed NSW's first ever record of
Red-lored Whistler here in 1964.

There's an old hut in the reserve. It's been rarely used since the late
1980s when the last Malleefowl disappeared. Malleefowl used to be a regular
attraction for birders and the hut was used for these trips. Harry Frith did
much of his pioneering work on Malleefowl around this hut, and there's still
an intact Malleefowl mound nearby. The hut is therefore an interesting
archaeological birdwatching site, very significant, and worth preserving.

Unfortunately a number of other mallee species have declined and may have
become locally extinct. These include Shy Heathwren (only one record since
the late 1990s), Chestnut Quail-thrush (only a few recent records), Southern
Scrub-robin (last record 1982) and Gilbert's Whistler (last record 1982).
So, when you do visit Pulletop, keep your eyes open, and your fingers
crossed, and hopefully you see these bird species.

Aside from the birds, another good reason for visiting Pulletop is to
immerse yourself in some wonderful mallee habitat - one of my favourite
places to be!

Leeton and Superb Parrot
In spring and summer Leeton is a great place to find Superb Parrot. I've
seen them there at a number of spots: one was in roadside trees along
Irrigation Way (-34.643565, 146.415968) about 11 km from Leeton; another is
in the Yanco Agricultural Institute (-34.617190, 146.423197) that located on
Truck Rd - this was the place where the Australian Birdfair was held.
Crimson Rosella (ĎYellow Rosellaí ssp. flaveolus) is also common around
here.

Note re other spots to see Superb Parrot
Another great place to see Superb Parrot is at Charles Sturt University in
Wagga Wagga, with best times to see them between August to December. Look
for them coming into drink at a small dam near car park 7 (-35.062440,
147.355528), and they also like to feed in a paddock adjoining Nathan Cobb
Drive (-35.056824, 147.354327).

Other places that Superb Parrot occur (mainly between August to December)
include the Berry Jerry section of Murrumbidgee Valley National Park, with a
nice spot to look for them is here -35.046041, 147.037321. Access is via the
roadside pull-in on the Sturt Hwy between Wagga Wagga and Narrandera. I've
also seen them regularly at a couple of sites along the Olympic Hwy, such as
the Wallacetown Roadside Rest Area (-34.959565, 147.447136), and a small
area of bushland here (-35.006376, 147.421253).

Junee Wetland
The Junee Wetland (-34.868043, 147.579299) is a small wetland in the middle
of downtown Junee. It is, however, paradise for crake and rails - so, if you
are passing through it is really worth stopping to have a look. It receives
75% of the town's stormwater runoff, as a consequence, contain water even in
the hotest time of year.

There's an excellent boardwalk, which enables you to get up close and
personal with Australian Spotted, Spotless and Baillon's Crake and
Buff-banded Rail. Another bird I've seen here is Brown Honeyeater, pretty
much the most southern limit for this species. In summer the Junee Wetland
can also be good for migratory waders, particularly Latham's Snipe.

Galore Hill Nature Reserve
Galore Hill is 80 km south-east of Leeton. It's a new site for me. The first
time I've visited was just a couple of week ago (June 2014), however I was
so impressed by the place that I wanted to write about it, and think it's a
special find! It's an impressive reserve that preserve about 500 ha of
bushland, it accessed via the Narrandera Rd, between Narrandera and
Lockhart. There's a lookout tower on the summit that offer fantastic
panoramic views of the region. Galore Hill probably most famous as being the
place that where bushranger 'Mad Dog' Morgan hid out in the caves in the
park.

The first stop is actually before entering the reserve, at the intersection
of Slocums Lane and Tinamba Lane (-35.115589, 146.759016). This is a good
spot to see Apostlebird and Grey-crowned Babbler, which hang out in the
native pines along the roads here.

Second stop is the arboretum, one of the reasons I was so impressed by
Galore Hill. An arboretum is a botanical garden that's focuses on growing
'special' plants. They can be great places to see birds, attracted to a wide
variety of flowering plants. A good example of this is the arboretum at
Dryandra Forest (south-west WA).

So what if I tell you that the 'special plants' in the Galore Hill arboretum
were Eremophila, Grevillea, Hakea and Acacia! It was like stumbling across
bird heaven. I was blown away by the number of flowering plants, all bird
attracting. As a result Galore Hill has a pretty good bird list, including
the two rare nomads, Black and Pied Honeyeater!

So, second stop is the patch of Eremophila that's located immediately after
you enter the park. I visited in the middle of winter, despite this, almost
half the species of Eremophila were flowering. Look for honeyeaters such as
Brown-headed, Fuscous, White-napped, Spiny-cheeked, White-plumed Honeyeater,
and, if you are lucky, you might find Black and Pied Honeyeater!

After stopping at the Eremophila patch, it's worth driving along both the
Curly Heckendorf Drive and the Summit Track, stopping where ever you see or
hear bird activity.

Along the Summit Track, Grey Box dominant the lower areas, while and Dwyerís
Red Gum, Black Cypress-Pine and Drooping Sheoke occur on the upper slopes
and ridges. In these areas you might see Emu, White-throated and Brown
Treecreeper, Restless Flycatcher, Varied Siytella, Rufous Songlark, Dusky,
White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Variegated Fairy-wren, Diamond Firetail
and Double-barred Finch.

The park's really good for robins; while there I saw Hooded, Red-capped,
Scarlet, Flame and Eastern Yellow Robin and Jacky Winter! In terms of
Thornbills and their allies there are Speckled Warbler, Weebill  Brown,
Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Buff-rumped, Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill,
Western Gerygone, and Southern Whiteface! Parrot recorded at Galore Hill
include Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Superb and Red-rumped
Parrot, Eastern and Crimson Rosella and Swift Parrot have also been
recorded.

Interestingly the main reason I visited Galore Hill in the first place was
to look for Glossy Black Cockatoo. Again, like at Cocoparra, unfortunately I
dipped.

Finally, there's a Galore Hill bird list on a notice board in the park. It
includes local bird names. Some are obvious, others not so - here's some
examples:

    Soldier Bird  (Noisy Miner)
    Lousy Jack  (Apostlebird)
    Bowacker  (Grey-crowned Babbler)
    Mopoke  (Southern Boobook)
    Whistling Eagle   (Whistling Kite)
    Ground Lark   (Australian Pipit)
    Brown Field Lark  (Singing Bushlark)
    Laughin Jackass   (Laughing Kookaburra)
    Black Backed Magpie  (Australian Magpie)
    White Backed Magpie   (Australian Magpie)
    Pee Wit   (Magpie Lark)
    Black Magpie   (White-winged Chough)
    Grass Parrot   (Red-rumped Parrot)
    Southern Yellow Robin (Eastern Yellow Robin)
    Brown Flycatcher   (Jacky Winter)
    Scissor Grinder   (Restless Flycatcher)
    Spur-winged Plover  (Masked Lapwing)
    Banded Plover   (Banded Lapwing)
    Bottle Swallow  (Welcome Swallow)
    Diamond Sparrow   (Diamond Firetail)
    Little Quail  (Little Button-quail)
    Rainbow Bird  (Rainbow Bee-eater)

Lists like that are simply priceless!

Tim Dolby







_________________________________





This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information
or be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is
unauthorised. If you have received this email in error, please advise the
sender via return email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria
University does not warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects
and accepts no liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects.

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the 
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information or 
be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended 
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is unauthorised. 
If you have received this email in error, please advise the sender via return 
email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria University does not 
warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects and accepts no 
liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects. 


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Ashmore Reef Oct 2014
From: Chris Melrose <cmelrose099 AT gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 16:43:16 +1000
Dear Jenny,,
We went on the Reef Prince in April 2014 to Ashmore Reef and yes, it was very 
very comfortable. But Iím not sure that they are using the same boat on the 
October trip. I would recommend that interested parties double check which boat 
is going. 


Cheers
Chris


Chris Melrose
cmelrose099 AT gmail.com
phone numbers: 
+61 (2)9438 3635 (Home) 
+61 407 705 140 (mobile)


On 17 Jul 2014, at 2:46 pm, Jenny Spry  wrote:

> Hi all,
> 
> Following up on an earlier email I have just found out there are still 2
> spots left on this October's trip. If you are interested please contact
> George Swann at:
> info AT kimberleybirdwatching.com.au
> 
> If you want to see how hard the trip is going to be (smile), have a look at
> the boat on the brochure at George's website, talk about a beautiful
> looking birdwatching come tropical cruising boat:
> 
> 
http://kimberleybirdwatching.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/ashmore-brochure.pdf 

> The brochure shows details for last April's trip. This trip is 19th to 28th
> October.
> 
> Can't you just imagine sitting on that top deck as cetacean, turtles, sea
> snakes and tropical birds pass us in the sunshine? - whoops, sorry about
> that embarrassing bit of rave, I am totally biased 'cos I have done the
> trip once already and want to make sure this trip happens (smile).
> 
> But there is a serious side to the trip too. The trips have been going
> every October or November since the 1990s, at least, and as George Swann
> said in an email "I think its important that we keep the trip going every
> year as it keeps Ashmore in Australian Birders mind plus we continue to
> collect data that is building into a huge data set for the Islands and the
> Browse Basin that is undergoing massive development with the oil and gas
> industry."
> 
> cheers
> 
> Jenny
> http://jenniferspryausbirding.blogspot.com.au/
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Gawler near Adelaide vs Murray Bridge area for Rock and Elegant Parrots
From: "Donald G. Kimball" <ibwonet1 AT gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 22:16:38 -0700
Coming back to OZ this coming Sept!  Totally stoked - Love oz and the
friendly birders there!

Will be attempting to find best locations for Rock and Elegant Parrot out
of Adelaide.  Wondering if its more productive to head to GAwler area or
hang out more around the mouth of the murray river near Murray Bridge.

Thanks to many already for the tips I am getting.  Still trying to narrow
it down because of a rushed schedule ...  Thanks folks!

Don the parrot guy
www.polytelismedia.wordpress.com
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Ashmore Reef Oct 2014
From: Jenny Spry <malurus.jenny AT gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 14:46:26 +1000
Hi all,

Following up on an earlier email I have just found out there are still 2
spots left on this October's trip. If you are interested please contact
George Swann at:
info AT kimberleybirdwatching.com.au

If you want to see how hard the trip is going to be (smile), have a look at
the boat on the brochure at George's website, talk about a beautiful
looking birdwatching come tropical cruising boat:


http://kimberleybirdwatching.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/ashmore-brochure.pdf 

The brochure shows details for last April's trip. This trip is 19th to 28th
October.

Can't you just imagine sitting on that top deck as cetacean, turtles, sea
snakes and tropical birds pass us in the sunshine? - whoops, sorry about
that embarrassing bit of rave, I am totally biased 'cos I have done the
trip once already and want to make sure this trip happens (smile).

But there is a serious side to the trip too. The trips have been going
every October or November since the 1990s, at least, and as George Swann
said in an email "I think its important that we keep the trip going every
year as it keeps Ashmore in Australian Birders mind plus we continue to
collect data that is building into a huge data set for the Islands and the
Browse Basin that is undergoing massive development with the oil and gas
industry."

cheers

Jenny
http://jenniferspryausbirding.blogspot.com.au/
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Test 2
From: Peter Shute <pshute AT nuw.org.au>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 14:06:40 +1000

Sent from my iPad

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Eastern Rosellas in Holt too
From: "John Layton" <johnlayton2 AT bigpond.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 12:04:19 +1000
Sara Henderson wrote:

quite large numbers of Eastern rosellas in some of the groups I'm seeing
lately. This morning, as I was out in the front yard for a couple of minutes
chatting to person replacing my severely injured rubbish bin, a flock of 24
flew into the deciduous trees either side of me. I've not noticed them
hanging around in such big groups before...    managed to get one very poor
photo of a tree with 13 of the birds in it after a quick dash inside for the
camera

sandra h

 

During the past two weeks hardly a day goes by when we don't see Eastern
Rosellas in or from our yard. Usually numbers range from three or four to 10
or more. Often they will bejewel the Hills hoist for several minutes
(probably checking for Pussums F. Katz) before descending to feed.

 

 

John K. Layton

Holt.

 

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Test
From: Peter Shute <pshute AT nuw.org.au>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2014 11:26:11 +1000

Sent from my iPad

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Noosa National Park
From: "SeanDooley" <sdooley AT bigpond.net.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 22:11:03 +1000
G'day all,
 
I recently spent a few days on a family holiday at Noosa (Queensland
Sunshine Coast). Birding was unfortunately not really on the agenda though a
quick pre-dawn dash down to the Yellow Bittern site on the morning of our
flight back to Melbourne did get me my first tick from an Aussie twitch
since the Grey-headed Lapwing in 2006. With only 14 minutes before I simply
had to leave in order not to miss the plane, the bird finally obliged in
front of 8 delighted (and very well-behaved!) birders and photographers. 
 
I thought it was worth mentioning, however, how productive the birding was
in the Noosa Heads section of Noosa National Park. I managed to visit three
times and only covered the walking tracks nearest Noosa, not getting out to
Alexandra Beach or anywhere along the coast. For anyone with only a little
time to spare, this place is well worth a visit. Highlights included some
terrific up close views of Noisy Pittas. They seem fairly well accustomed to
the many walkers and joggers that pound the tracks and merely froze for a
few seconds when somebody went past, leaving me standing there siaking up
sustained views. This was along the Tanglewood Track in the rainforest
section. I don't know if they are there over the summer months but it seemed
excellent for them. 
 
Other good lowland rainforest birds included Brown Cuckoo-Dove, Rufous
Shrike-thrush, White-eared Monarch 
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Borneo take 2
From: "Geoffrey Allan Jones" <gjo48414 AT bigpond.net.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 19:42:42 +1000
Sorry I forgot to shorten the URL http://preview.tinyurl.com/p3cyqpe

Regards Geoff



---
This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection 
is active. 

http://www.avast.com
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
From: "Carl Weber" <carl.weber AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 20:13:18 +1000
Great trip report, Tim. Mallee is one of my very favourite places to go
birding, too.

I seem to remember that someone on Birding-aus wrote that the red-lored
whistler call recorded on the CD set came from Pulletop Hill (?1962). I saw
foxes there last October -might help to explain the lack of red-lored
whistler and mallee fowl.

This might be a little outside your area of interest, but there was a flock
of 8 glossy black-cockatoos at Back Creek State Forest, near West Wyalong,
in April, 2012. I assumed that these were at the western limit of their
coastal NSW range, but I guess that they may well be part of the Riverina
population.

Your parking style, as pictured, is very good. But, if you want it to be
classed as A-Grade, then you must leave the motor running!

Best wishes,

Carl Weber

-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Tim Dolby
Sent: Wednesday, 16 July 2014 3:12 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough,
Pulletop and Galore Hill

Hi everyone, for something to do I've written up a trip/bird/plant report
for the Riverina - an area that I've been spending quite a bit of time in
recently.  The full report with some images is also on my website at
http://tim-dolby.blogspot.com.au. If you do get around to reading it, I hope
you like it!

Cheers,

Tim Dolby
_______________________

Birding the Riverina - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill

The following report covers some birdwatching locations in the Riverina,
including Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest, Fivebough Wetland,
Leeton and Tuckerbil Wetland, Pulletop Nature Reserve and Galore Hill Nature
Reserve. I've visited most of these sites about half a dozen times, so this
report is a bit of a rundown of those experiences, plus a bit of background
knowledge thrown in.

In 1817 John Oxley, the first Europeans to visit the region, wrote in his
journal "the weather as usual fine and clear, which is the greatest comfort
we enjoy in these deserts, abandoned as they seem to be by every living
creature capable of getting out of them." How wrong he was - from a
birdwatching and wildlife point of view, the Riverina is a seriously
under-estimated birding destination. By contrast with Oxley views, when
early settler Henry Osborne climbed to the top of Galore Hill in 1847 he
shouted "There's land enough and galore for me". Galore is an Irish word
that means plenty. This was perhaps a bad omen in terms of the clearing of
native vegetation, however it does show that the Riverina is an area of
contrasts, certainly in terms of its habitats, and it appeals to different
people.

One reason I've written this report is because a lot of Australian birders
travel to northern Victoria, visiting places such as Chiltern-Mt Pilot
National Park and Barmah National Park but seem to stop at the Murray River.
This may be because there's relatively little information about bird sites
just north of the Murray, so here's my own personal rundown of these places.

For a while the Riverina was a popular destination for birdwatchers, due
mainly to the Australian Birdfair, which was held each year in Leeton.
Fantastically organised by Mike Schultz, unfortunately this event hasn't
taken place since 2011, and a new Australian Bird Fair has started in
Sydney's Olympic Park. In many ways it's a great shame, I attended the
Leeton Birdfair in 2010 (or was it 2009?) and it was fabulous! There was a
great program, it was organised by some great people, and it was in a great
location.

The Riverina is a also great stop over site, stop there when you're heading
to Round Hill Nature Reserve and Lake Cargelligo, stop there if you're
heading from Melbourne to Brisbane (and beyond) or vice versa, and stop
there if you're heading from Sydney to Adelaide or vice versa.

Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest The main site I want to
concentrate on is Cocoparra National Park (8358 ha) and the adjacent Binya
State Forest (4170 ha), mainly because they are both a rare woodland
remnant, and they are a bit of a jewel in the Riverina crown. I've visited
these parks a number of  times; there's some dramatic scenery, rocky
outcrops and, in places, the rich red soils contrast wonderfully with the
greens of the trees, particularly the native pines.

First gazetted as a national park in 1969, Cocoparra National Park is
located 20 km east of Griffith on the Burley Griffin Way. When I've visited
I've pitched a tent at the excellent Woolshed Flat camp ground, or visited
from Leeton. As with most national parks bush camping is also permitted away
from roads and facilities. The Cocoparra Range is part of the traditional
lands of the Wiradjuri nation, and there are ~60 known Aboriginal sites,
mainly open campsites and scarred trees.

Wattle Drive - note my parking style! Lesson 1: car parking technique for
birdwatchers, follow these steps. See what you think is an unusual bird,
stop quickly in the middle of the track and leave your car door wide open
(this is important), and then walk off aimlessly looking for the mystery
bird. Ultimately you want to repeat these steps as much as is respectfully
possible.

Cocoparra's plants
Before talking about the birds, I thought I spend sometime writing about the
great plants at Cocoparra and Binya. With over 450 species recorded, these
are linked to different habitat types, each species varying according to
soil type.

On the Ridges
Cocoparra is a series of ranges, with exposed rough exposed rocks. On the
high ridges you'll find Black Cypress-pine (Callitris endlicheri), Dwyer's
Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri), Currawang (Acacia sparsiflora), Green
Tea-Tree (Leptospermum trivalve), and there's some heathland dominated by
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata), areas where it's worth looking for Shy
Heathwren.

The Slopes
In the dry sclerophyll forest on the rising foot and midslopes you find
native pines such as Black (Callitris endlicheri) and White Cypress-pine (C.
glaucophylla) and Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Eucalypts
here include Dwyer's Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus Dwyeri), Mugga Ironbark (E.
sideroxylon), Red Stringybark (E. macrorhyncha), Grey Box (E. microcarpa)
and the wonderful Bimble Box (E. ucalyptus populnea), with it's glossy and
rounded dark green leaves. This particular habitat mix is considered to be
regionally endangered - with less than 10% remaining of its original extent
- and is also the habitat type that supports locally endangered Glossy
Black-Cockatoo (discussed below).

Wattles on the slopes includes Currawong (Acacia doratoxylon), Yarran (A.
homalophylla), Currawang (A. sparsiflora), Deane's Wattle (A. deanei) and
Boree (A. pendula), while other trees here include Kurrajong (Brachychiton
populneum), Rosewood (Heterodendrum oleifolium) and Cherry Ballart
(Exocarpos cupressiformis).

When I visited Cocoparra just a few weeks ago the slopes were covered in
Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana). A spectacular climber with large
white-light red tube flowers about 15mm long, it's a close relative of the
Bower Vine (Pandorea jasmanoides) grown as a garden plant.. These flowers
cascaded from the tops of shrubs and trees along the Mt Brogden walk.
Pandorea pandorana seems to be a highly variable species, for instance in
other places that I've seen them they've flowered in Spring. However, here
at Cocoparra this year they were flowering profusely mid-winter.

The Woodlands
In the open grassy woodlands, and along the parks rocky creek lines and
sheltered gullies, you can find Blakely's Red Gum (Eucalyptus blakelyi),
Yellow Box (E. melliodora)  Dwyer's Mallee Gum (E. Dwyeri), Red Stringybark
(E. macrorhyncha), Bimble Box (E. populnea) and

Shrubs and Herbs Ground cover is normally sparse but after rain all the
grasses and herbs come to life - look for Oval-leaf or Purple Mintbush
(Prostanthera ovalifolia), Curry Bush (Cassinia laevis), Sticky Everlasting
(Xerochrysum viscosum), Rusty Spider-Flower (Grevillea floribunda), Common
Fringe-myrtle (Calytrix tetragona), Grey Guinea Flower (Hibbertia
obtusifolia), Nodding Blue Lily (Stypandra glauca), Smooth Flax Lily
(Dianella laevis), Urn Heath (Melichrus urceolatus), Australian Bluebell
(Wahlenbergia stricta) and Sandhill Goodenia (Goodenia willisiana). Native
daisies include Cut-leaved Daisy (Brachyscome multifida), Variable Daisy (B.
ciliaris) and Showy Daisy (B. ciliocarpa), while the tussock grasses are
Spear Grass (Austrostipa nodosa), Variable Spear Grass (Stipa variabilis)
and Wallaby Grass (Danthonia linkii).

There are a few rare plants occurring in the park. This includes Cocoparra
Pomaderris (Pomaderris cocoparrana), which is confined to rocky higher
altitudes areas in the Cocoparra Ranges - it's easily recognised by its
ovate leaves with a green upper surface and velvety, grey under surface, and
a bright yellow flowers in spring. It was once thought to be the more
widespread Pomaderris andromedifolia, until it was revealed to be distinct
separate species. Other rare plants include Club-leafed or Dainty Phebalium
(Phebalium obcordatum) and Irongrass (Lomandra patens).

Cocoparra's mammals and reptiles
In terms of native mammals in the park, Cocoparra is a bit of refuge. I've
seen Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), both Eastern (Macropus giganteus) and
Western Grey Kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), Red Kangaroo (M. rufus), Black
(Swamp) Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), while Red-necked Wallaby (M.
rufrogriseus) have been recorded near Cocoparra but not in the park itself -
probably the most westerly population for this species in the NSW.

Smaller mammals in the park remain largely elusive. There are Brushtail
Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) and the diurnal Yellow-footed Antechinus
(Antechinus flavipes), both relatively common. Most other small mammals are
known only by their remains identified in owl pellets, such as Rattus sp.,
i.e. Bush Rat (Rattus fuscipes), Bandicoot (Isoodon sp.) and native mice
(Pseudomys sp.). Eight species of bat have been recorded, the most common
being the White-striped Mastiff bat (Tadarida australis) as well as the
vulnerable Eastern Long-eared Bat (Nyctophilus timoriensis). Feral animals
in the park include Cat, Fox, Goat (quite common, estimated numbers to be
~2000, I've seen them on virtually every walks I've done), Rabbit and I've
seen signs of wild Pig.

There is a variety of reptiles in the park, notably the Nobbi Dragon
(Amphibolurus nobbi) and the Tree Crevice-skink or Tree Skink (Egernia
striolata). Both occur in the rocky areas along the Mt Brogden walk. The
Nobbi Dragon is similar to a Jacky Lizard (A. muricatus), but has a
distinctive stripe along its backs which is often pale-coloured or even
yellow, while the best place to look for Tree Skink is on the trunk of a
large eucalypt that have peeling loose bark and is surrounded by piles of
rocks, broken branches, dead leaves and some decaying hollow logs. Other
reptiles include Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbatus), Lace Monitor (Varanus
varius), Wood Gecko (Diplodactylus vittatus) and Mulga Snake (Pseudechis
australis).

The birds and bird sites
Cocoparra and Binya were classified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife
International, mainly because it supports a relatively large populations of
the near threatened Painted Honeyeater (the highest number of birds recorded
at one site at one time was 22) and contains Diamond Firetail. While it
always great to see these two species, Cocoparra has many other birding
attractions. For instance you can target birds such as Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, Black-eared
Cuckoo, Striped Honeyeater, Turquoise Parrot as well as the wonderful mallee
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot and Blue Bonnet - here
it's the yellow-vented ssp. haematogaster. In "good years" Cocoparra
attracts birds such as Cockatiel, Budgerigar, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo,
Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater. It's also always nice to see Splendid and
Variegated Fairy-wren, nice raptors in the area include Spotted Harrier and
Black and Peregrine Falcon and, at night, I've heard Spotted Nightjar.

The roadside native pines along Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route
Rd is a good place to look for White-browed Treecreeper. They are quite
active while foraging on the rough trunks of Belah, Buloke and native pines
- listen for their trilled, cricket-like chirrup call, especially during the
breeding season. Along the Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route Road
there are also scattered area of Bimble Box (Eucalyptus populnea) which tend
to be covered in Dropping Mistletoe (Amyema pendula). In late spring and
summer this is the place to look here for Painted Honeyeater - like the
White-browed Treecreeper, there call is distinctive, a loud georgi - georgi.
I've also seen Spotted Harrier alongside the Whitton Stock Route Road.

Forestry Hut
The Forestry Hut is one of the least known birding site in Binya. It's
located on the southern side of the Burley Griffin Way, approx 200m east of
the Whitton Stock Route intersection (-34.242500, 146.237778). Access is via
Pine Drive - it may be impassable in wet conditions, but you can easily walk
in. This is another good spot to look for White-browed Treecreeper, and it
can be a great birding spot generally, especially during spring flowering.
This is the only area that I've see Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater, and
here I've also seen Hooded Robin, White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Mulga
Parrot, Blue Bonnet, and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren.

Wattle Dam and Moss Dam
Cocoparra and Binya hold NSW's most westerly populations of Turquoise
Parrot. A good spot to look for them is around Wattle Dam and Moss Dam,
particularly in the mornings. Both located off Barry Scenic Drive (an
excellent 2WD road). Aside from the Turqs, around these dams you can also
see Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot, Rainbow Bee-eater, Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren, Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeater, Inland,
Chestnut-rumped and Yellow Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella,
Apostlebird and Bar-shouldered Dove - the south-western-most population for
this species.

Spring Hill and Falcon Falls
The Spring Hill Picnic Area can be teeming with birds, particularly when
there are mixed-species flocks about. Here there's a chance of seeing
Turquoise Parrot, as well as Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Brown
Treecreeper, Grey-crowned Babbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Yellow and Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Western Gerygone,
Jacky Winter, Hooded Robin, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch.

From the picnic area take the walk to Falcon Falls, where the scenery is
spectacular. These falls are appropriately named after Peregrine Falcon,
which breed on the cliffs in the area. Here there are also occasional
sightings of Glossy Black-Cockatoo.

Binya Forest Drive
The habitat along the Binya Forest Drive is dominated by native pines - it's
worth stopping where ever you see birdlife. It's particularly good for
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Blue Bonnet, and Turquoise, Mulga and
Red-rumped Parrot. Along this drive I've also seen Striped Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Crested Bellbird, Splendid Fairy-wren, Brown and
White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, and also heard Painted
Honeyeater. This area is probably the best spot to look for Gilbert's
Whistler.

Note: that the Binya Forest Drive may be impassable in wet conditions. Also
note that the the Parakeet Drive connects the Binya Forest Drive and Barry
Scenic Drive.

Mt Brogden and Glossy Black-Cockatoo
One of the best places to look for Glossy Black-Cockatoo is along the Mt
Brogden walking track.  This is the endangered Riverina population of Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, birds that are largely restricted to hills and low ridges
with areas of Drooping She-Oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Glossy
Black-Cockatoo then need suitable large hollows in Grey Box (Eucalyptus
microcarpa) or Dwyer's Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri). Unfortunately much of this
type of habitat has been cleared and is fragmented.

The social and conservation context of the Glossy Black-Cockatoo in the
Riverina intrigues me. As a population they are disjunct from other Glossy
Black-Cockatoo in NSW, and it now seems that the genetic link to the nearest
easterly NSW birds is uncertain. Indeed there is some evidence that the
Riverina birds are more closely related to the Kangaroo Island subspecies
halmaturinus - only a mere 1000 km away - which is remarkable! The fact that
the Riverina Glossy Black-Cockatoo are isolated and that they may be linked
to the Kangaroo Island birds indicates that this population has a very
significant conservation value.

[Note: If you don't see Glossy Black-Cockatoo in Cocoparra National Park,
they've also been recorded in the Narrandera Range, Brobenah Hills,
McPhersons Range, Galore Hill, Lachlan Range, Naradhan Range, Jimberoo State
Forest and Gap Dam State Forest.]

Mt Brogden is also one of the few spots in Cocoparra where Chestnut
Quail-thrush have been recorded, which may be present in the park in small
numbers - aside from that, the nearest population of Chestnut Quail-thrush
is said to be Loughnan Nature Reserve near Hillston and the bird at Round
Hill and Nombinnie.

Store Creek and Jack Creek Walking Tracks The Store Creek walking track
begins at the picnic area and walks you through a nice section of Cypress
Pine and Bimble Box. It ends at stunning natural amphitheatre formed by the
junction of two creeks. It's a good track to look for Crested Bellbird,
Red-capped Robin, Speckled Warbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater,
Chestnut-rumped, Yellow and Inland Thornbill, Splendid Fairy-wren,
Double-barred Finch and Diamond Firetail. In spring, I've seen Black-eared
Cuckoo, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow and Western Gerygone here.

I've seen similar birds along the equally spectacular Jack Creek walking
track - it a vast gorge, walk through some gullies and exposed ridges to
three lookouts that provide views of the gorge. One of the features of the
Jack Creek picnic area is that White-winged Chough nest above the picnic
tables.

Woolshed Flat
There's a very pleasant camping area at Woolshed Flat. Around the  campsite
and in the surrounding bush I've seen Emu, Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck,
Blue Bonnet, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, Yellow-plumed and Blue-faced
Honeyeater, Noisy and Little Friarbird, Speckled Warbler, Southern
Whiteface,  Dusky Woodswallow, Restless Flycatcher, Pallid Cuckoo, Rainbow
Bee-eater, White-winged Trilller, Western Gerygone, Restless Flycatcher, and
Rufous Songlark, and thornills such as Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow, and
Yellow-rumped. I've not seen them, but there are occasional sightings of
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo around Woolshed.

At night I've heard Spotted Nightjar, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, Southern
Boobook, and Tawny Frogmouth - the frogmouth here are the central
Australian/dry country ssp. brachypterus.

Fivebough Wetland
A fantastic and very large Ramsar-listed wetland, Fivebough Wetland (400 ha)
is a must visit place when passing through the area. With an impressive one
hundred and eighty species recorded, including eighty waterbird species,
you'd be stupid not to stop! The main car park is about 2 km north-east of
Leeton's town centre on Petersham Rd (-34.535624, 146.420576). It's a
surprisingly small car park for such a large reserve, so don't blink or
you'll miss it. Leeton has a range of accommodation options - but if you're
looking for somewhere interesting to stay, I've found that a particular good
place is the grand Historic Hydro Motor Inn; despite the name, it's actually
a grand old motel. The restaurant at the Inn is called the Freckled Duck -
and no, before you ask, duck wasn't on the menu!

The birding around the car park, and the nearby planted section of gums, is
surprisingly good - I've found Little Friarbird, Yellow-throated Miner,
Singing and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow-rumped
Thornbill, Weebill, Western Gerygone, Striated Pardalote and Zebra Finch.

The 5 km of walking trails begin from the car park, and lead to a number of
viewing mounds and two excellent bird hides. The track first takes you to
along All Weather Walking Trail to the Bittern bird hide. Along the first
section of reeds, I've occasionally seen Brown Quail feeding in the grassy
fringes of the track.

This bird hide overlooks a portion of wetland specifically managed for the
relatively rare Australasian Bittern: in season, their presence may be
revealed by their repeated booming call, heard mainly at night. There is
also a chance of Australian Little Bittern.

From the Bittern bird hide, and the nearby viewing area, you may also see
Glossy Ibis, Magpie Goose, Brolga, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel,
Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and Black-tailed Native-hen. It's
always worth scanning the exposed muddy edges for Baillon's, Australian
Spotted and Spotless Crake.

A range of summer shorebirds visit the wetland, such as Latham's Snipe,
Black-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Wood, Marsh and Sharp-tailed
Sandpiper, and Red-necked Stint, and look out for Whiskered and White-winged
Black Tern, White throated Needletail and Fork-tailed Swift. Rarities
recorded at the wetland include Little Curlew, Pectoral Sandpiper, Long-toed
Stint and Oriental Pratincole.

The shire council's sewage ponds - known as Duck Pond - are overlooked by a
bird hide on the eastern side of Fivebough. This is a great spot for
waterfowl such as Musk, Blue-billed, Freckled and Pink-eared Duck, Plumed
Whistling-Duck and Australasian Shoveler.

The Hooey Rd Lookout (-34.523651, 146.440815) is located on the other of
Fivebough Swamp. The Lookout provides a nice vantage point to scan the
wetland, with the best time for viewing at the end of the day, when large
numbers of Glossy Ibis fly in to roost for the night. Numbers vary from year
to year - the highest counts has been a staggering 20,000 in Nov 1995, and
15,000 in Nov 2005.

Tuckerbil Wetlands
Another wetland worth investigating in the area is Tuckerbil Wetland. It's a
large swamp north of Leeton. Situated in crop fields, it can be accessed via
Cantrill Rd 12 km north-west of Leeton. Drive up Cantrill Rd until you find
a picnic area adjacent an old sand quarry in a field.

The quarry has is good a place to see White-backed Swallow, Red-backed
Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater and Striated Pardalote, all which nest in the
quarry. When there is water in the swamp, it contains many of the birds
found at Fivebough. It's also a good place to see Blue Bonnet and Cockatiel.

Campbells Swamp
Aside from Swamp Tuckerbil and Fivebough Wetlands, Campbells Swamp just
north of Griffith (-34.229344, 146.031104) has some interesting birds - it's
a small shallow wetland, and has some nice areas of reeds and open water.
There's a nice bird hide constructed and boardwalk to get to it, and because
of its small size, it's possible to walk all the way around the swamp.
There's a good car park 1 km past the turn-off to Lake Wyangan.

I've not seen them, but when the water levels are right, it is a known site
for Australian Little Bittern and Australasian Bittern - and you might catch
up with Plumed Whistling-Duck, Freckled Duck, Magpie Goose, Baillon's Crake,
Australian Spotted Crake, Spotless Crake, Black-tailed Native-hen, and
Red-kneed Dotterel. Like Fivebough, when the water level is right, thousands
of Glossy Ibis may come to roost in the swamp each evening. And you
occasionally get waders such as Wood, Pectoral and Marsh Sandpiper.

An interesting walk is to cross the western fence of the swamp - or go
around - into the crown land and then head to the old cattle yards. This
minor land depression is edged with a single line of Bimble Box that act as
an ephemeral flood depressions, and can be good for birds.

BTW the Griffith Golf Course is one if the best sites in the region for
Major Mitchell Cockatoo and Blue Bonnet are usually there.

Pulletop Nature Reserve
Pulletop (145 ha) is a really interesting remnant area of the mallee located
north east of Cocoparra, 35 km north of Griffith. It's located just off the
Rankins Springs Road. Turn west when you get to Pulletop Rd, and the reserve
is about 4 km (-33.964751, 146.083791). It is worth noting that Pulletop Rd
is a really just a sandy track - when I was there it was in need of a good
grading, and may be impassable after rain.

The reserve has four species of mallee, White (Eucalyptus dumosa),
Narrow-leaf Red (E. leptophylla), Red Mallee (E. socialis) and Yorrell (E.
gracilis). These species dominate the reserve. There are some patches of
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata) and Mallee Cypress-pine (Callitris verrucosa)
that are intermixed with Streaked Wattle (Acacia lineata), Sweet Quandong
(Santalum acuminatum), Fringed Heath-myrtle (Micromyrtus ciliata) and
Wedge-leafed Hopbush (Dononea cuneata). There's also a small area of Bimble
Box (E. populnea) woodland in the south-west corner.

Rare plants in the reserve include Club-leafed Phebalium (Phebalium
obcordatum) and Rankins Springs Grevillea (Grevillea rosmarinifolia ssp
glabella), so look out for those. And look for native orchids such as Dwarf
Greenhood (Pterostylis nana) and the even smaller Midget Greenhood (P.
mutica), Blue Fingers (Caladenia caerulea) and Pink Fingers (C. carnea).

Due to this mallee mix, Pulletop is a great place to see parrots such as
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo, Cockatiel, Mallee Ringneck, Mulga Parrot,
Budgerigar and Blue Bonnet. It's also excellent for honeyeaters, such as
Yellow-plumed, White-fronted, Black, Singing, Painted Brown-headed,
Spiny-cheeked, Striped, White-eared and White-plumed Honeyeater,
Yellow-throated Miner and Crimson Chat - now that's not a bad list! You can
also see Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow,
Crested Bellbird, Varied Trilller, Rufous Songlark and Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren.

With great misfortunate, however, a few birds have gone missing from
Pulletop. Malleefowl and Red-lored Whistler were last seen in the mid-1980s
and are now considered extinct. The reserve was retained because it was felt
that this was a sufficient area to retain a viable population of these
species, which unfortunately does not seem to be the case. It's a real pity,
for instance Graeme Chapman photographed NSW's first ever record of
Red-lored Whistler here in 1964.

There's an old hut in the reserve. It's been rarely used since the late
1980s when the last Malleefowl disappeared. Malleefowl used to be a regular
attraction for birders and the hut was used for these trips. Harry Frith did
much of his pioneering work on Malleefowl around this hut, and there's still
an intact Malleefowl mound nearby. The hut is therefore an interesting
archaeological birdwatching site, very significant, and worth preserving.

Unfortunately a number of other mallee species have declined and may have
become locally extinct. These include Shy Heathwren (only one record since
the late 1990s), Chestnut Quail-thrush (only a few recent records), Southern
Scrub-robin (last record 1982) and Gilbert's Whistler (last record 1982).
So, when you do visit Pulletop, keep your eyes open, and your fingers
crossed, and hopefully you see these bird species.

Aside from the birds, another good reason for visiting Pulletop is to
immerse yourself in some wonderful mallee habitat - one of my favourite
places to be!

Leeton and Superb Parrot
In spring and summer Leeton is a great place to find Superb Parrot. I've
seen them there at a number of spots: one was in roadside trees along
Irrigation Way (-34.643565, 146.415968) about 11 km from Leeton; another is
in the Yanco Agricultural Institute (-34.617190, 146.423197) that located on
Truck Rd - this was the place where the Australian Birdfair was held.
Crimson Rosella ('Yellow Rosella' ssp. flaveolus) is also common around
here.

Note re other spots to see Superb Parrot Another great place to see Superb
Parrot is at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, with best times to see
them between August to December. Look for them coming into drink at a small
dam near car park 7 (-35.062440, 147.355528), and they also like to feed in
a paddock adjoining Nathan Cobb Drive (-35.056824, 147.354327).

Other places that Superb Parrot occur (mainly between August to December)
include the Berry Jerry section of Murrumbidgee Valley National Park, with a
nice spot to look for them is here -35.046041, 147.037321. Access is via the
roadside pull-in on the Sturt Hwy between Wagga Wagga and Narrandera. I've
also seen them regularly at a couple of sites along the Olympic Hwy, such as
the Wallacetown Roadside Rest Area (-34.959565, 147.447136), and a small
area of bushland here (-35.006376, 147.421253).

Junee Wetland
The Junee Wetland (-34.868043, 147.579299) is a small wetland in the middle
of downtown Junee. It is, however, paradise for crake and rails - so, if you
are passing through it is really worth stopping to have a look. It receives
75% of the town's stormwater runoff, as a consequence, contain water even in
the hotest time of year.

There's an excellent boardwalk, which enables you to get up close and
personal with Australian Spotted, Spotless and Baillon's Crake and
Buff-banded Rail. Another bird I've seen here is Brown Honeyeater, pretty
much the most southern limit for this species. In summer the Junee Wetland
can also be good for migratory waders, particularly Latham's Snipe.

Galore Hill Nature Reserve
Galore Hill is 80 km south-east of Leeton. It's a new site for me. The first
time I've visited was just a couple of week ago (June 2014), however I was
so impressed by the place that I wanted to write about it, and think it's a
special find! It's an impressive reserve that preserve about 500 ha of
bushland, it accessed via the Narrandera Rd, between Narrandera and
Lockhart. There's a lookout tower on the summit that offer fantastic
panoramic views of the region. Galore Hill probably most famous as being the
place that where bushranger 'Mad Dog' Morgan hid out in the caves in the
park.

The first stop is actually before entering the reserve, at the intersection
of Slocums Lane and Tinamba Lane (-35.115589, 146.759016). This is a good
spot to see Apostlebird and Grey-crowned Babbler, which hang out in the
native pines along the roads here.

Second stop is the arboretum, one of the reasons I was so impressed by
Galore Hill. An arboretum is a botanical garden that's focuses on growing
'special' plants. They can be great places to see birds, attracted to a wide
variety of flowering plants. A good example of this is the arboretum at
Dryandra Forest (south-west WA).

So what if I tell you that the 'special plants' in the Galore Hill arboretum
were Eremophila, Grevillea, Hakea and Acacia! It was like stumbling across
bird heaven. I was blown away by the number of flowering plants, all bird
attracting. As a result Galore Hill has a pretty good bird list, including
the two rare nomads, Black and Pied Honeyeater!

So, second stop is the patch of Eremophila that's located immediately after
you enter the park. I visited in the middle of winter, despite this, almost
half the species of Eremophila were flowering. Look for honeyeaters such as
Brown-headed, Fuscous, White-napped, Spiny-cheeked, White-plumed Honeyeater,
and, if you are lucky, you might find Black and Pied Honeyeater!

After stopping at the Eremophila patch, it's worth driving along both the
Curly Heckendorf Drive and the Summit Track, stopping where ever you see or
hear bird activity.

Along the Summit Track, Grey Box dominant the lower areas, while and Dwyer's
Red Gum, Black Cypress-Pine and Drooping Sheoke occur on the upper slopes
and ridges. In these areas you might see Emu, White-throated and Brown
Treecreeper, Restless Flycatcher, Varied Siytella, Rufous Songlark, Dusky,
White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Variegated Fairy-wren, Diamond Firetail
and Double-barred Finch.

The park's really good for robins; while there I saw Hooded, Red-capped,
Scarlet, Flame and Eastern Yellow Robin and Jacky Winter! In terms of
Thornbills and their allies there are Speckled Warbler, Weebill  Brown,
Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Buff-rumped, Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill,
Western Gerygone, and Southern Whiteface! Parrot recorded at Galore Hill
include Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Superb and Red-rumped
Parrot, Eastern and Crimson Rosella and Swift Parrot have also been
recorded.

Interestingly the main reason I visited Galore Hill in the first place was
to look for Glossy Black Cockatoo. Again, like at Cocoparra, unfortunately I
dipped.

Finally, there's a Galore Hill bird list on a notice board in the park. It
includes local bird names. Some are obvious, others not so - here's some
examples:

    Soldier Bird  (Noisy Miner)
    Lousy Jack  (Apostlebird)
    Bowacker  (Grey-crowned Babbler)
    Mopoke  (Southern Boobook)
    Whistling Eagle   (Whistling Kite)
    Ground Lark   (Australian Pipit)
    Brown Field Lark  (Singing Bushlark)
    Laughin Jackass   (Laughing Kookaburra)
    Black Backed Magpie  (Australian Magpie)
    White Backed Magpie   (Australian Magpie)
    Pee Wit   (Magpie Lark)
    Black Magpie   (White-winged Chough)
    Grass Parrot   (Red-rumped Parrot)
    Southern Yellow Robin (Eastern Yellow Robin)
    Brown Flycatcher   (Jacky Winter)
    Scissor Grinder   (Restless Flycatcher)
    Spur-winged Plover  (Masked Lapwing)
    Banded Plover   (Banded Lapwing)
    Bottle Swallow  (Welcome Swallow)
    Diamond Sparrow   (Diamond Firetail)
    Little Quail  (Little Button-quail)
    Rainbow Bird  (Rainbow Bee-eater)

Lists like that are simply priceless!

Tim Dolby







_________________________________





This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information
or be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is
unauthorised. If you have received this email in error, please advise the
sender via return email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria
University does not warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects
and accepts no liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects.

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
From: Neville Schrader OAM <nschrader AT bigpond.com>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 20:09:11 +1000
Hi Tim,

             As you, the distribution of the Riverina population of the
Glossy Black Cockatoo, has intrigued me for some time.
I've come to the conclusion that the Riverina population is probably not as
isolated as literature would suggest.  If you look at records in bird 
reports, over the
last 30 years, it becomes clear that there is no barrier and if you compare
the distribution of Allocasuarina verticillataa a picture starts to emerge.

Bob Miller a beekeeper from I think Griffith or Leeton, who travelled
extensively in central NSW ( meet him when I lived at Ivanhoe in the 1970
introduced by John Hobbs) observed them at a large number of locations,
(unfortunately I'm not aware what happened to his records), but he observed
the species on isolated ranges, mountains and ridges with populations of
verticillata broadly from Nymagee to Narrandera, including places like Mt
Hope, Tottenham, down to Narrandera.

I think Bob published a paper in Australian Birds back in the 70's.
Llewellyn also published a paper in the Emu on the confusion between the two
species red tailed black cockatoos in the Riverina and he put foreword the
theory on the relationship with the Kangaroo Island population. I've seen
nothing since. Christidis and Boles makes no comment.

Besides the locations you mention in recent years, Glossy Black's have been
recorded from Trangie, Tottenham, West Wyalong, Back Creek SF east of Wyong,
south end of Lake Cowal. From this site you can see the Weddin Mtns, not an
unreasonable distance to travel for a bird of this size.

They have also been observed by local landholders ( confirmed by the fact
they were feeding on She-oaks) at Bogan Gate west of Parkes, Gobondery
Range, Albert and Bogan R. near Peak Hill (Minore, Hervey Range, Bumberry 
Nangar, Conimba etc are east of these
locations, all which have populations of Glossy's). The Goonoo Goonoo
SF/Conservation area also holds a good population and is in flying distance, 
I would suggest.

I've always considered there is a couple of ridges west of Mt. Hope that
would be worth investigating, but dirt roads and isolation
is a problem. As is some of ridges between Hillston and Lake Cargelligo
worth a look at.

I guess as more birdwatchers travel west and the roads improve the
distribution of the Glossy Black Cockatoo will become clearer, but until
then the  "urban myth". will continue with the distribution of the Glossy 
black Cockatoo and the isolated population.

By the way a good report brings back some memories.

Good Birding

Neville Schrader





-----Original Message----- 
From: Tim Dolby
Sent: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 3:12 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough,
Pulletop and Galore Hill

Hi everyone, for something to do I've written up a trip/bird/plant report
for the Riverina - an area that I've been spending quite a bit of time in
recently.  The full report with some images is also on my website at
http://tim-dolby.blogspot.com.au. If you do get around to reading it, I hope
you like it!

Cheers,

Tim Dolby
_______________________

Birding the Riverina - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill

The following report covers some birdwatching locations in the Riverina,
including Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest, Fivebough Wetland,
Leeton and Tuckerbil Wetland, Pulletop Nature Reserve and Galore Hill Nature
Reserve. I've visited most of these sites about half a dozen times, so this
report is a bit of a rundown of those experiences, plus a bit of background
knowledge thrown in.

In 1817 John Oxley, the first Europeans to visit the region, wrote in his
journal "the weather as usual fine and clear, which is the greatest comfort
we enjoy in these deserts, abandoned as they seem to be by every living
creature capable of getting out of them." How wrong he was - from a
birdwatching and wildlife point of view, the Riverina is a seriously
under-estimated birding destination. By contrast with Oxley views, when
early settler Henry Osborne climbed to the top of Galore Hill in 1847 he
shouted "There's land enough and galore for me". Galore is an Irish word
that means plenty. This was perhaps a bad omen in terms of the clearing of
native vegetation, however it does show that the Riverina is an area of
contrasts, certainly in terms of its habitats, and it appeals to different
people.

One reason Iíve written this report is because a lot of Australian birders
travel to northern Victoria, visiting places such as Chiltern-Mt Pilot
National Park and Barmah National Park but seem to stop at the Murray River.
This may be because there's relatively little information about bird sites
just north of the Murray, so hereís my own personal rundown of these places.

For a while the Riverina was a popular destination for birdwatchers, due
mainly to the Australian Birdfair, which was held each year in Leeton.
Fantastically organised by Mike Schultz, unfortunately this event hasnít
taken place since 2011, and a new Australian Bird Fair has started in
Sydney's Olympic Park. In many ways it's a great shame, I attended the
Leeton Birdfair in 2010 (or was it 2009?) and it was fabulous! There was a
great program, it was organised by some great people, and it was in a great
location.

The Riverina is a also great stop over site, stop there when you're heading
to Round Hill Nature Reserve and Lake Cargelligo, stop there if you're
heading from Melbourne to Brisbane (and beyond) or vice versa, and stop
there if you're heading from Sydney to Adelaide or vice versa.

Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest
The main site I want to concentrate on is Cocoparra National Park (8358 ha)
and the adjacent Binya State Forest (4170 ha), mainly because they are both
a rare woodland remnant, and they are a bit of a jewel in the Riverina
crown. I've visited these parks a number of  times; there's some dramatic
scenery, rocky outcrops and, in places, the rich red soils contrast
wonderfully with the greens of the trees, particularly the native pines.

First gazetted as a national park in 1969, Cocoparra National Park is
located 20 km east of Griffith on the Burley Griffin Way. When I've visited
I've pitched a tent at the excellent Woolshed Flat camp ground, or visited
from Leeton. As with most national parks bush camping is also permitted away
from roads and facilities. The Cocoparra Range is part of the traditional
lands of the Wiradjuri nation, and there are ~60 known Aboriginal sites,
mainly open campsites and scarred trees.

Wattle Drive - note my parking style! Lesson 1: car parking technique for
birdwatchers, follow these steps. See what you think is an unusual bird,
stop quickly in the middle of the track and leave your car door wide open
(this is important), and then walk off aimlessly looking for the mystery
bird. Ultimately you want to repeat these steps as much as is respectfully
possible.

Cocoparra's plants
Before talking about the birds, I thought I spend sometime writing about the
great plants at Cocoparra and Binya. With over 450 species recorded, these
are linked to different habitat types, each species varying according to
soil type.

On the Ridges
Cocoparra is a series of ranges, with exposed rough exposed rocks. On the
high ridges you'll find Black Cypress-pine (Callitris endlicheri), Dwyerís
Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri), Currawang (Acacia sparsiflora), Green
Tea-Tree (Leptospermum trivalve), and there's some heathland dominated by
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata), areas where it's worth looking for Shy
Heathwren.

The Slopes
In the dry sclerophyll forest on the rising foot and midslopes you find
native pines such as Black (Callitris endlicheri) and White Cypress-pine (C.
glaucophylla) and Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Eucalypts
here include Dwyer's Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus Dwyeri), Mugga Ironbark (E.
sideroxylon), Red Stringybark (E. macrorhyncha), Grey Box (E. microcarpa)
and the wonderful Bimble Box (E. ucalyptus populnea), with it's glossy and
rounded dark green leaves. This particular habitat mix is considered to be
regionally endangered Ė with less than 10% remaining of its original
extent - and is also the habitat type that supports locally endangered
Glossy Black-Cockatoo (discussed below).

Wattles on the slopes includes Currawong (Acacia doratoxylon), Yarran (A.
homalophylla), Currawang (A. sparsiflora), Deane's Wattle (A. deanei) and
Boree (A. pendula), while other trees here include Kurrajong (Brachychiton
populneum), Rosewood (Heterodendrum oleifolium) and Cherry Ballart
(Exocarpos cupressiformis).

When I visited Cocoparra just a few weeks ago the slopes were covered in
Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana). A spectacular climber with large
white-light red tube flowers about 15mm long, it's a close relative of the
Bower Vine (Pandorea jasmanoides) grown as a garden plant.. These flowers
cascaded from the tops of shrubs and trees along the Mt Brogden walk.
Pandorea pandorana seems to be a highly variable species, for instance in
other places that I've seen them they've flowered in Spring. However, here
at Cocoparra this year they were flowering profusely mid-winter.

The Woodlands
In the open grassy woodlands, and along the parks rocky creek lines and
sheltered gullies, you can find Blakely's Red Gum (Eucalyptus blakelyi),
Yellow Box (E. melliodora)  Dwyer's Mallee Gum (E. Dwyeri), Red Stringybark
(E. macrorhyncha), Bimble Box (E. populnea) and

Shrubs and Herbs Ground cover is normally sparse but after rain all the
grasses and herbs come to life - look for Oval-leaf or Purple Mintbush
(Prostanthera ovalifolia), Curry Bush (Cassinia laevis), Sticky Everlasting
(Xerochrysum viscosum), Rusty Spider-Flower (Grevillea floribunda), Common
Fringe-myrtle (Calytrix tetragona), Grey Guinea Flower (Hibbertia
obtusifolia), Nodding Blue Lily (Stypandra glauca), Smooth Flax Lily
(Dianella laevis), Urn Heath (Melichrus urceolatus), Australian Bluebell
(Wahlenbergia stricta) and Sandhill Goodenia (Goodenia willisiana). Native
daisies include Cut-leaved Daisy (Brachyscome multifida), Variable Daisy (B.
ciliaris) and Showy Daisy (B. ciliocarpa), while the tussock grasses are
Spear Grass (Austrostipa nodosa), Variable Spear Grass (Stipa variabilis)
and Wallaby Grass (Danthonia linkii).

There are a few rare plants occurring in the park. This includes Cocoparra
Pomaderris (Pomaderris cocoparrana), which is confined to rocky higher
altitudes areas in the Cocoparra Ranges - it's easily recognised by its
ovate leaves with a green upper surface and velvety, grey under surface, and
a bright yellow flowers in spring. It was once thought to be the more
widespread Pomaderris andromedifolia, until it was revealed to be distinct
separate species. Other rare plants include Club-leafed or Dainty Phebalium
(Phebalium obcordatum) and Irongrass (Lomandra patens).

Cocoparra's mammals and reptiles
In terms of native mammals in the park, Cocoparra is a bit of refuge. I've
seen Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), both Eastern (Macropus giganteus) and
Western Grey Kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), Red Kangaroo (M. rufus), Black
(Swamp) Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor), while Red-necked Wallaby (M.
rufrogriseus) have been recorded near Cocoparra but not in the park itself -
probably the most westerly population for this species in the NSW.

Smaller mammals in the park remain largely elusive. There are Brushtail
Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) and the diurnal Yellow-footed Antechinus
(Antechinus flavipes), both relatively common. Most other small mammals are
known only by their remains identified in owl pellets, such as Rattus sp.,
i.e. Bush Rat (Rattus fuscipes), Bandicoot (Isoodon sp.) and native mice
(Pseudomys sp.). Eight species of bat have been recorded, the most common
being the White-striped Mastiff bat (Tadarida australis) as well as the
vulnerable Eastern Long-eared Bat (Nyctophilus timoriensis). Feral animals
in the park include Cat, Fox, Goat (quite common, estimated numbers to be
~2000, Iíve seen them on virtually every walks Iíve done), Rabbit and Iíve
seen signs of wild Pig.

There is a variety of reptiles in the park, notably the Nobbi Dragon
(Amphibolurus nobbi) and the Tree Crevice-skink or Tree Skink (Egernia
striolata). Both occur in the rocky areas along the Mt Brogden walk. The
Nobbi Dragon is similar to a Jacky Lizard (A. muricatus), but has a
distinctive stripe along its backs which is often pale-coloured or even
yellow, while the best place to look for Tree Skink is on the trunk of a
large eucalypt that have peeling loose bark and is surrounded by piles of
rocks, broken branches, dead leaves and some decaying hollow logs. Other
reptiles include Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbatus), Lace Monitor (Varanus
varius), Wood Gecko (Diplodactylus vittatus) and Mulga Snake (Pseudechis
australis).

The birds and bird sites
Cocoparra and Binya were classified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife
International, mainly because it supports a relatively large populations of
the near threatened Painted Honeyeater (the highest number of birds recorded
at one site at one time was 22) and contains Diamond Firetail. While it
always great to see these two species, Cocoparra has many other birding
attractions. For instance you can target birds such as Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, Black-eared
Cuckoo, Striped Honeyeater, Turquoise Parrot as well as the wonderful mallee
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot and Blue Bonnet - here
it's the yellow-vented ssp. haematogaster. In "good years" Cocoparra
attracts birds such as Cockatiel, Budgerigar, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo,
Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater. It's also always nice to see Splendid and
Variegated Fairy-wren, nice raptors in the area include Spotted Harrier and
Black and Peregrine Falcon and, at night, I've heard Spotted Nightjar.

The roadside native pines along Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route
Rd is a good place to look for White-browed Treecreeper. They are quite
active while foraging on the rough trunks of Belah, Buloke and native
pines - listen for their trilled, cricket-like chirrup call, especially
during the breeding season. Along the Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock
Route Road there are also scattered area of Bimble Box (Eucalyptus populnea)
which tend to be covered in Dropping Mistletoe (Amyema pendula). In late
spring and summer this is the place to look here for Painted Honeyeater -
like the White-browed Treecreeper, there call is distinctive, a loud
georgi - georgi. I've also seen Spotted Harrier alongside the Whitton Stock
Route Road.

Forestry Hut
The Forestry Hut is one of the least known birding site in Binya. It's
located on the southern side of the Burley Griffin Way, approx 200m east of
the Whitton Stock Route intersection (-34.242500, 146.237778). Access is via
Pine Drive - it may be impassable in wet conditions, but you can easily walk
in. This is another good spot to look for White-browed Treecreeper, and it
can be a great birding spot generally, especially during spring flowering.
This is the only area that I've see Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater, and
here I've also seen Hooded Robin, White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Mulga
Parrot, Blue Bonnet, and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren.

Wattle Dam and Moss Dam
Cocoparra and Binya hold NSW's most westerly populations of Turquoise
Parrot. A good spot to look for them is around Wattle Dam and Moss Dam,
particularly in the mornings. Both located off Barry Scenic Drive (an
excellent 2WD road). Aside from the Turqs, around these dams you can also
see Australian Ringneck, Mulga Parrot, Rainbow Bee-eater, Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren, Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeater, Inland,
Chestnut-rumped and Yellow Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella,
Apostlebird and Bar-shouldered Dove - the south-western-most population for
this species.

Spring Hill and Falcon Falls
The Spring Hill Picnic Area can be teeming with birds, particularly when
there are mixed-species flocks about. Here there's a chance of seeing
Turquoise Parrot, as well as Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Brown
Treecreeper, Grey-crowned Babbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Yellow and Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Western Gerygone,
Jacky Winter, Hooded Robin, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch.

From the picnic area take the walk to Falcon Falls, where the scenery is
spectacular. These falls are appropriately named after Peregrine Falcon,
which breed on the cliffs in the area. Here there are also occasional
sightings of Glossy Black-Cockatoo.

Binya Forest Drive
The habitat along the Binya Forest Drive is dominated by native pines - it's
worth stopping where ever you see birdlife. It's particularly good for
parrots such as Australian Ringneck, Blue Bonnet, and Turquoise, Mulga and
Red-rumped Parrot. Along this drive I've also seen Striped Honeyeater,
Speckled Warbler, Crested Bellbird, Splendid Fairy-wren, Brown and
White-browed Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, and also heard Painted
Honeyeater. This area is probably the best spot to look for Gilbertís
Whistler.

Note: that the Binya Forest Drive may be impassable in wet conditions. Also
note that the the Parakeet Drive connects the Binya Forest Drive and Barry
Scenic Drive.

Mt Brogden and Glossy Black-Cockatoo
One of the best places to look for Glossy Black-Cockatoo is along the Mt
Brogden walking track.  This is the endangered Riverina population of Glossy
Black-Cockatoo, birds that are largely restricted to hills and low ridges
with areas of Drooping She-Oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Glossy
Black-Cockatoo then need suitable large hollows in Grey Box (Eucalyptus
microcarpa) or Dwyer's Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri). Unfortunately much of this
type of habitat has been cleared and is fragmented.

The social and conservation context of the Glossy Black-Cockatoo in the
Riverina intrigues me. As a population they are disjunct from other Glossy
Black-Cockatoo in NSW, and it now seems that the genetic link to the nearest
easterly NSW birds is uncertain. Indeed there is some evidence that the
Riverina birds are more closely related to the Kangaroo Island subspecies
halmaturinus - only a mere 1000 km away - which is remarkable! The fact that
the Riverina Glossy Black-Cockatoo are isolated and that they may be linked
to the Kangaroo Island birds indicates that this population has a very
significant conservation value.

[Note: If you don't see Glossy Black-Cockatoo in Cocoparra National Park,
they've also been recorded in the Narrandera Range, Brobenah Hills,
McPhersons Range, Galore Hill, Lachlan Range, Naradhan Range, Jimberoo State
Forest and Gap Dam State Forest.]

Mt Brogden is also one of the few spots in Cocoparra where Chestnut
Quail-thrush have been recorded, which may be present in the park in small
numbers - aside from that, the nearest population of Chestnut Quail-thrush
is said to be Loughnan Nature Reserve near Hillston and the bird at Round
Hill and Nombinnie.

Store Creek and Jack Creek Walking Tracks
The Store Creek walking track begins at the picnic area and walks you
through a nice section of Cypress Pine and Bimble Box. It ends at stunning
natural amphitheatre formed by the junction of two creeks. It's a good track
to look for Crested Bellbird, Red-capped Robin, Speckled Warbler, Striped
and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow and Inland Thornbill,
Splendid Fairy-wren, Double-barred Finch and Diamond Firetail. In spring,
I've seen Black-eared Cuckoo, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow and
Western Gerygone here.

I've seen similar birds along the equally spectacular Jack Creek walking
track - it a vast gorge, walk through some gullies and exposed ridges to
three lookouts that provide views of the gorge. One of the features of the
Jack Creek picnic area is that White-winged Chough nest above the picnic
tables.

Woolshed Flat
There's a very pleasant camping area at Woolshed Flat. Around the  campsite
and in the surrounding bush I've seen Emu, Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck,
Blue Bonnet, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, Yellow-plumed and Blue-faced
Honeyeater, Noisy and Little Friarbird, Speckled Warbler, Southern
Whiteface,  Dusky Woodswallow, Restless Flycatcher, Pallid Cuckoo, Rainbow
Bee-eater, White-winged Trilller, Western Gerygone, Restless Flycatcher, and
Rufous Songlark, and thornills such as Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow, and
Yellow-rumped. I've not seen them, but there are occasional sightings of
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo around Woolshed.

At night I've heard Spotted Nightjar, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, Southern
Boobook, and Tawny Frogmouth - the frogmouth here are the central
Australian/dry country ssp. brachypterus.

Fivebough Wetland
A fantastic and very large Ramsar-listed wetland, Fivebough Wetland (400 ha)
is a must visit place when passing through the area. With an impressive one
hundred and eighty species recorded, including eighty waterbird species,
you'd be stupid not to stop! The main car park is about 2 km north-east of
Leeton's town centre on Petersham Rd (-34.535624, 146.420576). It's a
surprisingly small car park for such a large reserve, so don't blink or
you'll miss it. Leeton has a range of accommodation options - but if you're
looking for somewhere interesting to stay, I've found that a particular good
place is the grand Historic Hydro Motor Inn; despite the name, it's actually
a grand old motel. The restaurant at the Inn is called the Freckled Duck -
and no, before you ask, duck wasn't on the menu!

The birding around the car park, and the nearby planted section of gums, is
surprisingly good - I've found Little Friarbird, Yellow-throated Miner,
Singing and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow-rumped
Thornbill, Weebill, Western Gerygone, Striated Pardalote and Zebra Finch.

The 5 km of walking trails begin from the car park, and lead to a number of
viewing mounds and two excellent bird hides. The track first takes you to
along All Weather Walking Trail to the Bittern bird hide. Along the first
section of reeds, I've occasionally seen Brown Quail feeding in the grassy
fringes of the track.

This bird hide overlooks a portion of wetland specifically managed for the
relatively rare Australasian Bittern: in season, their presence may be
revealed by their repeated booming call, heard mainly at night. There is
also a chance of Australian Little Bittern.

From the Bittern bird hide, and the nearby viewing area, you may also see
Glossy Ibis, Magpie Goose, Brolga, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel,
Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and Black-tailed Native-hen. It's
always worth scanning the exposed muddy edges for Baillonís, Australian
Spotted and Spotless Crake.

A range of summer shorebirds visit the wetland, such as Lathamís Snipe,
Black-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Wood, Marsh and Sharp-tailed
Sandpiper, and Red-necked Stint, and look out for Whiskered and White-winged
Black Tern, White throated Needletail and Fork-tailed Swift. Rarities
recorded at the wetland include Little Curlew, Pectoral Sandpiper, Long-toed
Stint and Oriental Pratincole.

The shire councilís sewage ponds - known as Duck Pond - are overlooked by a
bird hide on the eastern side of Fivebough. This is a great spot for
waterfowl such as Musk, Blue-billed, Freckled and Pink-eared Duck, Plumed
Whistling-Duck and Australasian Shoveler.

The Hooey Rd Lookout (-34.523651, 146.440815) is located on the other of
Fivebough Swamp. The Lookout provides a nice vantage point to scan the
wetland, with the best time for viewing at the end of the day, when large
numbers of Glossy Ibis fly in to roost for the night. Numbers vary from year
to year - the highest counts has been a staggering 20,000 in Nov 1995, and
15,000 in Nov 2005.

Tuckerbil Wetlands
Another wetland worth investigating in the area is Tuckerbil Wetland. It's a
large swamp north of Leeton. Situated in crop fields, it can be accessed via
Cantrill Rd 12 km north-west of Leeton. Drive up Cantrill Rd until you find
a picnic area adjacent an old sand quarry in a field.

The quarry has is good a place to see White-backed Swallow, Red-backed
Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater and Striated Pardalote, all which nest in the
quarry. When there is water in the swamp, it contains many of the birds
found at Fivebough. It's also a good place to see Blue Bonnet and Cockatiel.

Campbells Swamp
Aside from Swamp Tuckerbil and Fivebough Wetlands, Campbells Swamp just
north of Griffith (-34.229344, 146.031104) has some interesting birds - it's
a small shallow wetland, and has some nice areas of reeds and open water.
There's a nice bird hide constructed and boardwalk to get to it, and because
of its small size, it's possible to walk all the way around the swamp.
There's a good car park 1 km past the turn-off to Lake Wyangan.

I've not seen them, but when the water levels are right, it is a known site
for Australian Little Bittern and Australasian Bittern - and you might catch
up with Plumed Whistling-Duck, Freckled Duck, Magpie Goose, Baillon's Crake,
Australian Spotted Crake, Spotless Crake, Black-tailed Native-hen, and
Red-kneed Dotterel. Like Fivebough, when the water level is right, thousands
of Glossy Ibis may come to roost in the swamp each evening. And you
occasionally get waders such as Wood, Pectoral and Marsh Sandpiper.

An interesting walk is to cross the western fence of the swamp - or go
around - into the crown land and then head to the old cattle yards. This
minor land depression is edged with a single line of Bimble Box that act as
an ephemeral flood depressions, and can be good for birds.

BTW the Griffith Golf Course is one if the best sites in the region for
Major Mitchell Cockatoo and Blue Bonnet are usually there.

Pulletop Nature Reserve
Pulletop (145 ha) is a really interesting remnant area of the mallee located
north east of Cocoparra, 35 km north of Griffith. It's located just off the
Rankins Springs Road. Turn west when you get to Pulletop Rd, and the reserve
is about 4 km (-33.964751, 146.083791). It is worth noting that Pulletop Rd
is a really just a sandy track - when I was there it was in need of a good
grading, and may be impassable after rain.

The reserve has four species of mallee, White (Eucalyptus dumosa),
Narrow-leaf Red (E. leptophylla), Red Mallee (E. socialis) and Yorrell (E.
gracilis). These species dominate the reserve. There are some patches of
Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata) and Mallee Cypress-pine (Callitris verrucosa)
that are intermixed with Streaked Wattle (Acacia lineata), Sweet Quandong
(Santalum acuminatum), Fringed Heath-myrtle (Micromyrtus ciliata) and
Wedge-leafed Hopbush (Dononea cuneata). There's also a small area of Bimble
Box (E. populnea) woodland in the south-west corner.

Rare plants in the reserve include Club-leafed Phebalium (Phebalium
obcordatum) and Rankins Springs Grevillea (Grevillea rosmarinifolia ssp
glabella), so look out for those. And look for native orchids such as Dwarf
Greenhood (Pterostylis nana) and the even smaller Midget Greenhood (P.
mutica), Blue Fingers (Caladenia caerulea) and Pink Fingers (C. carnea).

Due to this mallee mix, Pulletop is a great place to see parrots such as
Major Mitchellís Cockatoo, Cockatiel, Mallee Ringneck, Mulga Parrot,
Budgerigar and Blue Bonnet. It's also excellent for honeyeaters, such as
Yellow-plumed, White-fronted, Black, Singing, Painted Brown-headed,
Spiny-cheeked, Striped, White-eared and White-plumed Honeyeater,
Yellow-throated Miner and Crimson Chat - now that's not a bad list! You can
also see Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow,
Crested Bellbird, Varied Trilller, Rufous Songlark and Variegated and
Splendid Fairy-wren.

With great misfortunate, however, a few birds have gone missing from
Pulletop. Malleefowl and Red-lored Whistler were last seen in the mid-1980s
and are now considered extinct. The reserve was retained because it was felt
that this was a sufficient area to retain a viable population of these
species, which unfortunately does not seem to be the case. It's a real pity,
for instance Graeme Chapman photographed NSW's first ever record of
Red-lored Whistler here in 1964.

There's an old hut in the reserve. It's been rarely used since the late
1980s when the last Malleefowl disappeared. Malleefowl used to be a regular
attraction for birders and the hut was used for these trips. Harry Frith did
much of his pioneering work on Malleefowl around this hut, and there's still
an intact Malleefowl mound nearby. The hut is therefore an interesting
archaeological birdwatching site, very significant, and worth preserving.

Unfortunately a number of other mallee species have declined and may have
become locally extinct. These include Shy Heathwren (only one record since
the late 1990s), Chestnut Quail-thrush (only a few recent records), Southern
Scrub-robin (last record 1982) and Gilbert's Whistler (last record 1982).
So, when you do visit Pulletop, keep your eyes open, and your fingers
crossed, and hopefully you see these bird species.

Aside from the birds, another good reason for visiting Pulletop is to
immerse yourself in some wonderful mallee habitat - one of my favourite
places to be!

Leeton and Superb Parrot
In spring and summer Leeton is a great place to find Superb Parrot. I've
seen them there at a number of spots: one was in roadside trees along
Irrigation Way (-34.643565, 146.415968) about 11 km from Leeton; another is
in the Yanco Agricultural Institute (-34.617190, 146.423197) that located on
Truck Rd - this was the place where the Australian Birdfair was held.
Crimson Rosella (ĎYellow Rosellaí ssp. flaveolus) is also common around
here.

Note re other spots to see Superb Parrot
Another great place to see Superb Parrot is at Charles Sturt University in
Wagga Wagga, with best times to see them between August to December. Look
for them coming into drink at a small dam near car park 7 (-35.062440,
147.355528), and they also like to feed in a paddock adjoining Nathan Cobb
Drive (-35.056824, 147.354327).

Other places that Superb Parrot occur (mainly between August to December)
include the Berry Jerry section of Murrumbidgee Valley National Park, with a
nice spot to look for them is here -35.046041, 147.037321. Access is via the
roadside pull-in on the Sturt Hwy between Wagga Wagga and Narrandera. I've
also seen them regularly at a couple of sites along the Olympic Hwy, such as
the Wallacetown Roadside Rest Area (-34.959565, 147.447136), and a small
area of bushland here (-35.006376, 147.421253).

Junee Wetland
The Junee Wetland (-34.868043, 147.579299) is a small wetland in the middle
of downtown Junee. It is, however, paradise for crake and rails - so, if you
are passing through it is really worth stopping to have a look. It receives
75% of the town's stormwater runoff, as a consequence, contain water even in
the hotest time of year.

There's an excellent boardwalk, which enables you to get up close and
personal with Australian Spotted, Spotless and Baillon's Crake and
Buff-banded Rail. Another bird I've seen here is Brown Honeyeater, pretty
much the most southern limit for this species. In summer the Junee Wetland
can also be good for migratory waders, particularly Latham's Snipe.

Galore Hill Nature Reserve
Galore Hill is 80 km south-east of Leeton. It's a new site for me. The first
time I've visited was just a couple of week ago (June 2014), however I was
so impressed by the place that I wanted to write about it, and think it's a
special find! It's an impressive reserve that preserve about 500 ha of
bushland, it accessed via the Narrandera Rd, between Narrandera and
Lockhart. There's a lookout tower on the summit that offer fantastic
panoramic views of the region. Galore Hill probably most famous as being the
place that where bushranger 'Mad Dog' Morgan hid out in the caves in the
park.

The first stop is actually before entering the reserve, at the intersection
of Slocums Lane and Tinamba Lane (-35.115589, 146.759016). This is a good
spot to see Apostlebird and Grey-crowned Babbler, which hang out in the
native pines along the roads here.

Second stop is the arboretum, one of the reasons I was so impressed by
Galore Hill. An arboretum is a botanical garden that's focuses on growing
'special' plants. They can be great places to see birds, attracted to a wide
variety of flowering plants. A good example of this is the arboretum at
Dryandra Forest (south-west WA).

So what if I tell you that the 'special plants' in the Galore Hill arboretum
were Eremophila, Grevillea, Hakea and Acacia! It was like stumbling across
bird heaven. I was blown away by the number of flowering plants, all bird
attracting. As a result Galore Hill has a pretty good bird list, including
the two rare nomads, Black and Pied Honeyeater!

So, second stop is the patch of Eremophila that's located immediately after
you enter the park. I visited in the middle of winter, despite this, almost
half the species of Eremophila were flowering. Look for honeyeaters such as
Brown-headed, Fuscous, White-napped, Spiny-cheeked, White-plumed Honeyeater,
and, if you are lucky, you might find Black and Pied Honeyeater!

After stopping at the Eremophila patch, it's worth driving along both the
Curly Heckendorf Drive and the Summit Track, stopping where ever you see or
hear bird activity.

Along the Summit Track, Grey Box dominant the lower areas, while and Dwyerís
Red Gum, Black Cypress-Pine and Drooping Sheoke occur on the upper slopes
and ridges. In these areas you might see Emu, White-throated and Brown
Treecreeper, Restless Flycatcher, Varied Siytella, Rufous Songlark, Dusky,
White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Variegated Fairy-wren, Diamond Firetail
and Double-barred Finch.

The park's really good for robins; while there I saw Hooded, Red-capped,
Scarlet, Flame and Eastern Yellow Robin and Jacky Winter! In terms of
Thornbills and their allies there are Speckled Warbler, Weebill  Brown,
Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Buff-rumped, Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill,
Western Gerygone, and Southern Whiteface! Parrot recorded at Galore Hill
include Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Superb and Red-rumped
Parrot, Eastern and Crimson Rosella and Swift Parrot have also been
recorded.

Interestingly the main reason I visited Galore Hill in the first place was
to look for Glossy Black Cockatoo. Again, like at Cocoparra, unfortunately I
dipped.

Finally, there's a Galore Hill bird list on a notice board in the park. It
includes local bird names. Some are obvious, others not so - here's some
examples:

    Soldier Bird  (Noisy Miner)
    Lousy Jack  (Apostlebird)
    Bowacker  (Grey-crowned Babbler)
    Mopoke  (Southern Boobook)
    Whistling Eagle   (Whistling Kite)
    Ground Lark   (Australian Pipit)
    Brown Field Lark  (Singing Bushlark)
    Laughin Jackass   (Laughing Kookaburra)
    Black Backed Magpie  (Australian Magpie)
    White Backed Magpie   (Australian Magpie)
    Pee Wit   (Magpie Lark)
    Black Magpie   (White-winged Chough)
    Grass Parrot   (Red-rumped Parrot)
    Southern Yellow Robin (Eastern Yellow Robin)
    Brown Flycatcher   (Jacky Winter)
    Scissor Grinder   (Restless Flycatcher)
    Spur-winged Plover  (Masked Lapwing)
    Banded Plover   (Banded Lapwing)
    Bottle Swallow  (Welcome Swallow)
    Diamond Sparrow   (Diamond Firetail)
    Little Quail  (Little Button-quail)
    Rainbow Bird  (Rainbow Bee-eater)

Lists like that are simply priceless!

Tim Dolby







_________________________________





This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information
or be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is
unauthorised. If you have received this email in error, please advise the
sender via return email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria
University does not warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects
and accepts no liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects.

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org 


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Borneo Part One
From: "Geoffrey Allan Jones" <gjo48414 AT bigpond.net.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 19:05:05 +1000
Evening Everyone I have just finished part one of my trip to Borneo
http://www.barraimaging.com.au/Trips/Borneo-Part-One-June-2014/ Glad to see
we all still love Bird Photographers! Regards Geoff

 



---
This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection 
is active. 

http://www.avast.com
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: NSW Riverina Trip Report - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill
From: Tim Dolby <Tim.Dolby AT vu.edu.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 05:12:17 +0000
Hi everyone, for something to do I've written up a trip/bird/plant report for 
the Riverina - an area that I've been spending quite a bit of time in recently. 
The full report with some images is also on my website at 
http://tim-dolby.blogspot.com.au. If you do get around to reading it, I hope 
you like it! 


Cheers,

Tim Dolby
_______________________

Birding the Riverina - Cocoparra, Fivebough, Pulletop and Galore Hill

The following report covers some birdwatching locations in the Riverina, 
including Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest, Fivebough Wetland, 
Leeton and Tuckerbil Wetland, Pulletop Nature Reserve and Galore Hill Nature 
Reserve. I've visited most of these sites about half a dozen times, so this 
report is a bit of a rundown of those experiences, plus a bit of background 
knowledge thrown in. 


In 1817 John Oxley, the first Europeans to visit the region, wrote in his 
journal "the weather as usual fine and clear, which is the greatest comfort we 
enjoy in these deserts, abandoned as they seem to be by every living creature 
capable of getting out of them." How wrong he was - from a birdwatching and 
wildlife point of view, the Riverina is a seriously under-estimated birding 
destination. By contrast with Oxley views, when early settler Henry Osborne 
climbed to the top of Galore Hill in 1847 he shouted "There's land enough and 
galore for me". Galore is an Irish word that means plenty. This was perhaps a 
bad omen in terms of the clearing of native vegetation, however it does show 
that the Riverina is an area of contrasts, certainly in terms of its habitats, 
and it appeals to different people. 


One reason Iíve written this report is because a lot of Australian birders 
travel to northern Victoria, visiting places such as Chiltern-Mt Pilot National 
Park and Barmah National Park but seem to stop at the Murray River. This may be 
because there's relatively little information about bird sites just north of 
the Murray, so hereís my own personal rundown of these places. 


For a while the Riverina was a popular destination for birdwatchers, due mainly 
to the Australian Birdfair, which was held each year in Leeton. Fantastically 
organised by Mike Schultz, unfortunately this event hasnít taken place since 
2011, and a new Australian Bird Fair has started in Sydney's Olympic Park. In 
many ways it's a great shame, I attended the Leeton Birdfair in 2010 (or was it 
2009?) and it was fabulous! There was a great program, it was organised by some 
great people, and it was in a great location. 


The Riverina is a also great stop over site, stop there when you're heading to 
Round Hill Nature Reserve and Lake Cargelligo, stop there if you're heading 
from Melbourne to Brisbane (and beyond) or vice versa, and stop there if you're 
heading from Sydney to Adelaide or vice versa. 


Cocoparra National Park and Binya State Forest
The main site I want to concentrate on is Cocoparra National Park (8358 ha) and 
the adjacent Binya State Forest (4170 ha), mainly because they are both a rare 
woodland remnant, and they are a bit of a jewel in the Riverina crown. I've 
visited these parks a number of times; there's some dramatic scenery, rocky 
outcrops and, in places, the rich red soils contrast wonderfully with the 
greens of the trees, particularly the native pines. 


First gazetted as a national park in 1969, Cocoparra National Park is located 
20 km east of Griffith on the Burley Griffin Way. When I've visited I've 
pitched a tent at the excellent Woolshed Flat camp ground, or visited from 
Leeton. As with most national parks bush camping is also permitted away from 
roads and facilities. The Cocoparra Range is part of the traditional lands of 
the Wiradjuri nation, and there are ~60 known Aboriginal sites, mainly open 
campsites and scarred trees. 


Wattle Drive - note my parking style! Lesson 1: car parking technique for 
birdwatchers, follow these steps. See what you think is an unusual bird, stop 
quickly in the middle of the track and leave your car door wide open (this is 
important), and then walk off aimlessly looking for the mystery bird. 
Ultimately you want to repeat these steps as much as is respectfully possible. 


Cocoparra's plants
Before talking about the birds, I thought I spend sometime writing about the 
great plants at Cocoparra and Binya. With over 450 species recorded, these are 
linked to different habitat types, each species varying according to soil type. 


On the Ridges
Cocoparra is a series of ranges, with exposed rough exposed rocks. On the high 
ridges you'll find Black Cypress-pine (Callitris endlicheri), Dwyerís Mallee 
Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri), Currawang (Acacia sparsiflora), Green Tea-Tree 
(Leptospermum trivalve), and there's some heathland dominated by Broombush 
(Melaleuca uncinata), areas where it's worth looking for Shy Heathwren. 


The Slopes
In the dry sclerophyll forest on the rising foot and midslopes you find native 
pines such as Black (Callitris endlicheri) and White Cypress-pine (C. 
glaucophylla) and Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Eucalypts here 
include Dwyer's Mallee Gum (Eucalyptus Dwyeri), Mugga Ironbark (E. 
sideroxylon), Red Stringybark (E. macrorhyncha), Grey Box (E. microcarpa) and 
the wonderful Bimble Box (E. ucalyptus populnea), with it's glossy and rounded 
dark green leaves. This particular habitat mix is considered to be regionally 
endangered Ė with less than 10% remaining of its original extent - and is also 
the habitat type that supports locally endangered Glossy Black-Cockatoo 
(discussed below). 


Wattles on the slopes includes Currawong (Acacia doratoxylon), Yarran (A. 
homalophylla), Currawang (A. sparsiflora), Deane's Wattle (A. deanei) and Boree 
(A. pendula), while other trees here include Kurrajong (Brachychiton 
populneum), Rosewood (Heterodendrum oleifolium) and Cherry Ballart (Exocarpos 
cupressiformis). 


When I visited Cocoparra just a few weeks ago the slopes were covered in Wonga 
Vine (Pandorea pandorana). A spectacular climber with large white-light red 
tube flowers about 15mm long, it's a close relative of the Bower Vine (Pandorea 
jasmanoides) grown as a garden plant.. These flowers cascaded from the tops of 
shrubs and trees along the Mt Brogden walk. Pandorea pandorana seems to be a 
highly variable species, for instance in other places that I've seen them 
they've flowered in Spring. However, here at Cocoparra this year they were 
flowering profusely mid-winter. 


The Woodlands
In the open grassy woodlands, and along the parks rocky creek lines and 
sheltered gullies, you can find Blakely's Red Gum (Eucalyptus blakelyi), Yellow 
Box (E. melliodora) Dwyer's Mallee Gum (E. Dwyeri), Red Stringybark (E. 
macrorhyncha), Bimble Box (E. populnea) and 


Shrubs and Herbs Ground cover is normally sparse but after rain all the grasses 
and herbs come to life - look for Oval-leaf or Purple Mintbush (Prostanthera 
ovalifolia), Curry Bush (Cassinia laevis), Sticky Everlasting (Xerochrysum 
viscosum), Rusty Spider-Flower (Grevillea floribunda), Common Fringe-myrtle 
(Calytrix tetragona), Grey Guinea Flower (Hibbertia obtusifolia), Nodding Blue 
Lily (Stypandra glauca), Smooth Flax Lily (Dianella laevis), Urn Heath 
(Melichrus urceolatus), Australian Bluebell (Wahlenbergia stricta) and Sandhill 
Goodenia (Goodenia willisiana). Native daisies include Cut-leaved Daisy 
(Brachyscome multifida), Variable Daisy (B. ciliaris) and Showy Daisy (B. 
ciliocarpa), while the tussock grasses are Spear Grass (Austrostipa nodosa), 
Variable Spear Grass (Stipa variabilis) and Wallaby Grass (Danthonia linkii). 


There are a few rare plants occurring in the park. This includes Cocoparra 
Pomaderris (Pomaderris cocoparrana), which is confined to rocky higher 
altitudes areas in the Cocoparra Ranges - it's easily recognised by its ovate 
leaves with a green upper surface and velvety, grey under surface, and a bright 
yellow flowers in spring. It was once thought to be the more widespread 
Pomaderris andromedifolia, until it was revealed to be distinct separate 
species. Other rare plants include Club-leafed or Dainty Phebalium (Phebalium 
obcordatum) and Irongrass (Lomandra patens). 


Cocoparra's mammals and reptiles
In terms of native mammals in the park, Cocoparra is a bit of refuge. I've seen 
Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), both Eastern (Macropus giganteus) and Western 
Grey Kangaroo (M. fuliginosus), Red Kangaroo (M. rufus), Black (Swamp) Wallaby 
(Wallabia bicolor), while Red-necked Wallaby (M. rufrogriseus) have been 
recorded near Cocoparra but not in the park itself - probably the most westerly 
population for this species in the NSW. 


Smaller mammals in the park remain largely elusive. There are Brushtail Possum 
(Trichosurus vulpecula) and the diurnal Yellow-footed Antechinus (Antechinus 
flavipes), both relatively common. Most other small mammals are known only by 
their remains identified in owl pellets, such as Rattus sp., i.e. Bush Rat 
(Rattus fuscipes), Bandicoot (Isoodon sp.) and native mice (Pseudomys sp.). 
Eight species of bat have been recorded, the most common being the 
White-striped Mastiff bat (Tadarida australis) as well as the vulnerable 
Eastern Long-eared Bat (Nyctophilus timoriensis). Feral animals in the park 
include Cat, Fox, Goat (quite common, estimated numbers to be ~2000, Iíve seen 
them on virtually every walks Iíve done), Rabbit and Iíve seen signs of wild 
Pig. 


There is a variety of reptiles in the park, notably the Nobbi Dragon 
(Amphibolurus nobbi) and the Tree Crevice-skink or Tree Skink (Egernia 
striolata). Both occur in the rocky areas along the Mt Brogden walk. The Nobbi 
Dragon is similar to a Jacky Lizard (A. muricatus), but has a distinctive 
stripe along its backs which is often pale-coloured or even yellow, while the 
best place to look for Tree Skink is on the trunk of a large eucalypt that have 
peeling loose bark and is surrounded by piles of rocks, broken branches, dead 
leaves and some decaying hollow logs. Other reptiles include Bearded Dragon 
(Pogona barbatus), Lace Monitor (Varanus varius), Wood Gecko (Diplodactylus 
vittatus) and Mulga Snake (Pseudechis australis). 


The birds and bird sites
Cocoparra and Binya were classified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife 
International, mainly because it supports a relatively large populations of the 
near threatened Painted Honeyeater (the highest number of birds recorded at one 
site at one time was 22) and contains Diamond Firetail. While it always great 
to see these two species, Cocoparra has many other birding attractions. For 
instance you can target birds such as Glossy Black-Cockatoo, White-browed 
Treecreeper, Bar-shouldered Dove, Black-eared Cuckoo, Striped Honeyeater, 
Turquoise Parrot as well as the wonderful mallee parrots such as Australian 
Ringneck, Mulga Parrot and Blue Bonnet - here it's the yellow-vented ssp. 
haematogaster. In "good years" Cocoparra attracts birds such as Cockatiel, 
Budgerigar, Major Mitchell's Cockatoo, Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater. It's 
also always nice to see Splendid and Variegated Fairy-wren, nice raptors in the 
area include Spotted Harrier and Black and Peregrine Falcon and, at night, I've 
heard Spotted Nightjar. 


The roadside native pines along Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route Rd 
is a good place to look for White-browed Treecreeper. They are quite active 
while foraging on the rough trunks of Belah, Buloke and native pines - listen 
for their trilled, cricket-like chirrup call, especially during the breeding 
season. Along the Burley Griffith Way and Whitton Stock Route Road there are 
also scattered area of Bimble Box (Eucalyptus populnea) which tend to be 
covered in Dropping Mistletoe (Amyema pendula). In late spring and summer this 
is the place to look here for Painted Honeyeater - like the White-browed 
Treecreeper, there call is distinctive, a loud georgi - georgi. I've also seen 
Spotted Harrier alongside the Whitton Stock Route Road. 


Forestry Hut
The Forestry Hut is one of the least known birding site in Binya. It's located 
on the southern side of the Burley Griffin Way, approx 200m east of the Whitton 
Stock Route intersection (-34.242500, 146.237778). Access is via Pine Drive - 
it may be impassable in wet conditions, but you can easily walk in. This is 
another good spot to look for White-browed Treecreeper, and it can be a great 
birding spot generally, especially during spring flowering. This is the only 
area that I've see Crimson Chat and Black Honeyeater, and here I've also seen 
Hooded Robin, White-browed and Masked Woodswallow, Mulga Parrot, Blue Bonnet, 
and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren. 


Wattle Dam and Moss Dam
Cocoparra and Binya hold NSW's most westerly populations of Turquoise Parrot. A 
good spot to look for them is around Wattle Dam and Moss Dam, particularly in 
the mornings. Both located off Barry Scenic Drive (an excellent 2WD road). 
Aside from the Turqs, around these dams you can also see Australian Ringneck, 
Mulga Parrot, Rainbow Bee-eater, Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren, 
Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeater, Inland, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow 
Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella, Apostlebird and Bar-shouldered 
Dove - the south-western-most population for this species. 


Spring Hill and Falcon Falls
The Spring Hill Picnic Area can be teeming with birds, particularly when there 
are mixed-species flocks about. Here there's a chance of seeing Turquoise 
Parrot, as well as Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Brown Treecreeper, 
Grey-crowned Babbler, Striped and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Speckled Warbler, 
Yellow and Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Western Gerygone, Jacky Winter, Hooded 
Robin, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch. 


From the picnic area take the walk to Falcon Falls, where the scenery is 
spectacular. These falls are appropriately named after Peregrine Falcon, which 
breed on the cliffs in the area. Here there are also occasional sightings of 
Glossy Black-Cockatoo. 


Binya Forest Drive
The habitat along the Binya Forest Drive is dominated by native pines - it's 
worth stopping where ever you see birdlife. It's particularly good for parrots 
such as Australian Ringneck, Blue Bonnet, and Turquoise, Mulga and Red-rumped 
Parrot. Along this drive I've also seen Striped Honeyeater, Speckled Warbler, 
Crested Bellbird, Splendid Fairy-wren, Brown and White-browed Treecreeper, 
Bar-shouldered Dove, and also heard Painted Honeyeater. This area is probably 
the best spot to look for Gilbertís Whistler. 


Note: that the Binya Forest Drive may be impassable in wet conditions. Also 
note that the the Parakeet Drive connects the Binya Forest Drive and Barry 
Scenic Drive. 


Mt Brogden and Glossy Black-Cockatoo
One of the best places to look for Glossy Black-Cockatoo is along the Mt 
Brogden walking track. This is the endangered Riverina population of Glossy 
Black-Cockatoo, birds that are largely restricted to hills and low ridges with 
areas of Drooping She-Oak (Allocasuarina verticillata). Glossy Black-Cockatoo 
then need suitable large hollows in Grey Box (Eucalyptus microcarpa) or Dwyer's 
Gum (Eucalyptus dwyeri). Unfortunately much of this type of habitat has been 
cleared and is fragmented. 


The social and conservation context of the Glossy Black-Cockatoo in the 
Riverina intrigues me. As a population they are disjunct from other Glossy 
Black-Cockatoo in NSW, and it now seems that the genetic link to the nearest 
easterly NSW birds is uncertain. Indeed there is some evidence that the 
Riverina birds are more closely related to the Kangaroo Island subspecies 
halmaturinus - only a mere 1000 km away - which is remarkable! The fact that 
the Riverina Glossy Black-Cockatoo are isolated and that they may be linked to 
the Kangaroo Island birds indicates that this population has a very significant 
conservation value. 


[Note: If you don't see Glossy Black-Cockatoo in Cocoparra National Park, 
they've also been recorded in the Narrandera Range, Brobenah Hills, McPhersons 
Range, Galore Hill, Lachlan Range, Naradhan Range, Jimberoo State Forest and 
Gap Dam State Forest.] 


Mt Brogden is also one of the few spots in Cocoparra where Chestnut 
Quail-thrush have been recorded, which may be present in the park in small 
numbers - aside from that, the nearest population of Chestnut Quail-thrush is 
said to be Loughnan Nature Reserve near Hillston and the bird at Round Hill and 
Nombinnie. 


Store Creek and Jack Creek Walking Tracks
The Store Creek walking track begins at the picnic area and walks you through a 
nice section of Cypress Pine and Bimble Box. It ends at stunning natural 
amphitheatre formed by the junction of two creeks. It's a good track to look 
for Crested Bellbird, Red-capped Robin, Speckled Warbler, Striped and 
Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow and Inland Thornbill, 
Splendid Fairy-wren, Double-barred Finch and Diamond Firetail. In spring, I've 
seen Black-eared Cuckoo, Masked and White-browed Woodswallow and Western 
Gerygone here. 


I've seen similar birds along the equally spectacular Jack Creek walking track 
- it a vast gorge, walk through some gullies and exposed ridges to three 
lookouts that provide views of the gorge. One of the features of the Jack Creek 
picnic area is that White-winged Chough nest above the picnic tables. 


Woolshed Flat
There's a very pleasant camping area at Woolshed Flat. Around the campsite and 
in the surrounding bush I've seen Emu, Mulga Parrot, Mallee Ringneck, Blue 
Bonnet, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, Yellow-plumed and Blue-faced Honeyeater, Noisy 
and Little Friarbird, Speckled Warbler, Southern Whiteface, Dusky Woodswallow, 
Restless Flycatcher, Pallid Cuckoo, Rainbow Bee-eater, White-winged Trilller, 
Western Gerygone, Restless Flycatcher, and Rufous Songlark, and thornills such 
as Inland, Chestnut-rumped, Yellow, and Yellow-rumped. I've not seen them, but 
there are occasional sightings of Major Mitchell's Cockatoo around Woolshed. 


At night I've heard Spotted Nightjar, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, Southern 
Boobook, and Tawny Frogmouth - the frogmouth here are the central 
Australian/dry country ssp. brachypterus. 


Fivebough Wetland
A fantastic and very large Ramsar-listed wetland, Fivebough Wetland (400 ha) is 
a must visit place when passing through the area. With an impressive one 
hundred and eighty species recorded, including eighty waterbird species, you'd 
be stupid not to stop! The main car park is about 2 km north-east of Leeton's 
town centre on Petersham Rd (-34.535624, 146.420576). It's a surprisingly small 
car park for such a large reserve, so don't blink or you'll miss it. Leeton has 
a range of accommodation options - but if you're looking for somewhere 
interesting to stay, I've found that a particular good place is the grand 
Historic Hydro Motor Inn; despite the name, it's actually a grand old motel. 
The restaurant at the Inn is called the Freckled Duck - and no, before you ask, 
duck wasn't on the menu! 


The birding around the car park, and the nearby planted section of gums, is 
surprisingly good - I've found Little Friarbird, Yellow-throated Miner, Singing 
and Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped and Yellow-rumped Thornbill, 
Weebill, Western Gerygone, Striated Pardalote and Zebra Finch. 


The 5 km of walking trails begin from the car park, and lead to a number of 
viewing mounds and two excellent bird hides. The track first takes you to along 
All Weather Walking Trail to the Bittern bird hide. Along the first section of 
reeds, I've occasionally seen Brown Quail feeding in the grassy fringes of the 
track. 


This bird hide overlooks a portion of wetland specifically managed for the 
relatively rare Australasian Bittern: in season, their presence may be revealed 
by their repeated booming call, heard mainly at night. There is also a chance 
of Australian Little Bittern. 


From the Bittern bird hide, and the nearby viewing area, you may also see 
Glossy Ibis, Magpie Goose, Brolga, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel, 
Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and Black-tailed Native-hen. It's always 
worth scanning the exposed muddy edges for Baillonís, Australian Spotted and 
Spotless Crake. 


A range of summer shorebirds visit the wetland, such as Lathamís Snipe, 
Black-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Wood, Marsh and Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, 
and Red-necked Stint, and look out for Whiskered and White-winged Black Tern, 
White throated Needletail and Fork-tailed Swift. Rarities recorded at the 
wetland include Little Curlew, Pectoral Sandpiper, Long-toed Stint and Oriental 
Pratincole. 


The shire councilís sewage ponds - known as Duck Pond - are overlooked by a 
bird hide on the eastern side of Fivebough. This is a great spot for waterfowl 
such as Musk, Blue-billed, Freckled and Pink-eared Duck, Plumed Whistling-Duck 
and Australasian Shoveler. 


The Hooey Rd Lookout (-34.523651, 146.440815) is located on the other of 
Fivebough Swamp. The Lookout provides a nice vantage point to scan the wetland, 
with the best time for viewing at the end of the day, when large numbers of 
Glossy Ibis fly in to roost for the night. Numbers vary from year to year - the 
highest counts has been a staggering 20,000 in Nov 1995, and 15,000 in Nov 
2005. 


Tuckerbil Wetlands
Another wetland worth investigating in the area is Tuckerbil Wetland. It's a 
large swamp north of Leeton. Situated in crop fields, it can be accessed via 
Cantrill Rd 12 km north-west of Leeton. Drive up Cantrill Rd until you find a 
picnic area adjacent an old sand quarry in a field. 


The quarry has is good a place to see White-backed Swallow, Red-backed 
Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater and Striated Pardalote, all which nest in the 
quarry. When there is water in the swamp, it contains many of the birds found 
at Fivebough. It's also a good place to see Blue Bonnet and Cockatiel. 


Campbells Swamp
Aside from Swamp Tuckerbil and Fivebough Wetlands, Campbells Swamp just north 
of Griffith (-34.229344, 146.031104) has some interesting birds - it's a small 
shallow wetland, and has some nice areas of reeds and open water. There's a 
nice bird hide constructed and boardwalk to get to it, and because of its small 
size, it's possible to walk all the way around the swamp. There's a good car 
park 1 km past the turn-off to Lake Wyangan. 


I've not seen them, but when the water levels are right, it is a known site for 
Australian Little Bittern and Australasian Bittern - and you might catch up 
with Plumed Whistling-Duck, Freckled Duck, Magpie Goose, Baillon's Crake, 
Australian Spotted Crake, Spotless Crake, Black-tailed Native-hen, and 
Red-kneed Dotterel. Like Fivebough, when the water level is right, thousands of 
Glossy Ibis may come to roost in the swamp each evening. And you occasionally 
get waders such as Wood, Pectoral and Marsh Sandpiper. 


An interesting walk is to cross the western fence of the swamp - or go around - 
into the crown land and then head to the old cattle yards. This minor land 
depression is edged with a single line of Bimble Box that act as an ephemeral 
flood depressions, and can be good for birds. 


BTW the Griffith Golf Course is one if the best sites in the region for Major 
Mitchell Cockatoo and Blue Bonnet are usually there. 


Pulletop Nature Reserve
Pulletop (145 ha) is a really interesting remnant area of the mallee located 
north east of Cocoparra, 35 km north of Griffith. It's located just off the 
Rankins Springs Road. Turn west when you get to Pulletop Rd, and the reserve is 
about 4 km (-33.964751, 146.083791). It is worth noting that Pulletop Rd is a 
really just a sandy track - when I was there it was in need of a good grading, 
and may be impassable after rain. 


The reserve has four species of mallee, White (Eucalyptus dumosa), Narrow-leaf 
Red (E. leptophylla), Red Mallee (E. socialis) and Yorrell (E. gracilis). These 
species dominate the reserve. There are some patches of Broombush (Melaleuca 
uncinata) and Mallee Cypress-pine (Callitris verrucosa) that are intermixed 
with Streaked Wattle (Acacia lineata), Sweet Quandong (Santalum acuminatum), 
Fringed Heath-myrtle (Micromyrtus ciliata) and Wedge-leafed Hopbush (Dononea 
cuneata). There's also a small area of Bimble Box (E. populnea) woodland in the 
south-west corner. 


Rare plants in the reserve include Club-leafed Phebalium (Phebalium obcordatum) 
and Rankins Springs Grevillea (Grevillea rosmarinifolia ssp glabella), so look 
out for those. And look for native orchids such as Dwarf Greenhood (Pterostylis 
nana) and the even smaller Midget Greenhood (P. mutica), Blue Fingers 
(Caladenia caerulea) and Pink Fingers (C. carnea). 


Due to this mallee mix, Pulletop is a great place to see parrots such as Major 
Mitchellís Cockatoo, Cockatiel, Mallee Ringneck, Mulga Parrot, Budgerigar and 
Blue Bonnet. It's also excellent for honeyeaters, such as Yellow-plumed, 
White-fronted, Black, Singing, Painted Brown-headed, Spiny-cheeked, Striped, 
White-eared and White-plumed Honeyeater, Yellow-throated Miner and Crimson Chat 
- now that's not a bad list! You can also see Peaceful Dove, Hooded Robin, 
Masked and White-browed Woodswallow, Crested Bellbird, Varied Trilller, Rufous 
Songlark and Variegated and Splendid Fairy-wren. 


With great misfortunate, however, a few birds have gone missing from Pulletop. 
Malleefowl and Red-lored Whistler were last seen in the mid-1980s and are now 
considered extinct. The reserve was retained because it was felt that this was 
a sufficient area to retain a viable population of these species, which 
unfortunately does not seem to be the case. It's a real pity, for instance 
Graeme Chapman photographed NSW's first ever record of Red-lored Whistler here 
in 1964. 


There's an old hut in the reserve. It's been rarely used since the late 1980s 
when the last Malleefowl disappeared. Malleefowl used to be a regular 
attraction for birders and the hut was used for these trips. Harry Frith did 
much of his pioneering work on Malleefowl around this hut, and there's still an 
intact Malleefowl mound nearby. The hut is therefore an interesting 
archaeological birdwatching site, very significant, and worth preserving. 


Unfortunately a number of other mallee species have declined and may have 
become locally extinct. These include Shy Heathwren (only one record since the 
late 1990s), Chestnut Quail-thrush (only a few recent records), Southern 
Scrub-robin (last record 1982) and Gilbert's Whistler (last record 1982). So, 
when you do visit Pulletop, keep your eyes open, and your fingers crossed, and 
hopefully you see these bird species. 


Aside from the birds, another good reason for visiting Pulletop is to immerse 
yourself in some wonderful mallee habitat - one of my favourite places to be! 


Leeton and Superb Parrot
In spring and summer Leeton is a great place to find Superb Parrot. I've seen 
them there at a number of spots: one was in roadside trees along Irrigation Way 
(-34.643565, 146.415968) about 11 km from Leeton; another is in the Yanco 
Agricultural Institute (-34.617190, 146.423197) that located on Truck Rd - this 
was the place where the Australian Birdfair was held. Crimson Rosella (ĎYellow 
Rosellaí ssp. flaveolus) is also common around here. 


Note re other spots to see Superb Parrot
Another great place to see Superb Parrot is at Charles Sturt University in 
Wagga Wagga, with best times to see them between August to December. Look for 
them coming into drink at a small dam near car park 7 (-35.062440, 147.355528), 
and they also like to feed in a paddock adjoining Nathan Cobb Drive 
(-35.056824, 147.354327). 


Other places that Superb Parrot occur (mainly between August to December) 
include the Berry Jerry section of Murrumbidgee Valley National Park, with a 
nice spot to look for them is here -35.046041, 147.037321. Access is via the 
roadside pull-in on the Sturt Hwy between Wagga Wagga and Narrandera. I've also 
seen them regularly at a couple of sites along the Olympic Hwy, such as the 
Wallacetown Roadside Rest Area (-34.959565, 147.447136), and a small area of 
bushland here (-35.006376, 147.421253). 


Junee Wetland
The Junee Wetland (-34.868043, 147.579299) is a small wetland in the middle of 
downtown Junee. It is, however, paradise for crake and rails - so, if you are 
passing through it is really worth stopping to have a look. It receives 75% of 
the town's stormwater runoff, as a consequence, contain water even in the 
hotest time of year. 


There's an excellent boardwalk, which enables you to get up close and personal 
with Australian Spotted, Spotless and Baillon's Crake and Buff-banded Rail. 
Another bird I've seen here is Brown Honeyeater, pretty much the most southern 
limit for this species. In summer the Junee Wetland can also be good for 
migratory waders, particularly Latham's Snipe. 


Galore Hill Nature Reserve
Galore Hill is 80 km south-east of Leeton. It's a new site for me. The first 
time I've visited was just a couple of week ago (June 2014), however I was so 
impressed by the place that I wanted to write about it, and think it's a 
special find! It's an impressive reserve that preserve about 500 ha of 
bushland, it accessed via the Narrandera Rd, between Narrandera and Lockhart. 
There's a lookout tower on the summit that offer fantastic panoramic views of 
the region. Galore Hill probably most famous as being the place that where 
bushranger 'Mad Dog' Morgan hid out in the caves in the park. 


The first stop is actually before entering the reserve, at the intersection of 
Slocums Lane and Tinamba Lane (-35.115589, 146.759016). This is a good spot to 
see Apostlebird and Grey-crowned Babbler, which hang out in the native pines 
along the roads here. 


Second stop is the arboretum, one of the reasons I was so impressed by Galore 
Hill. An arboretum is a botanical garden that's focuses on growing 'special' 
plants. They can be great places to see birds, attracted to a wide variety of 
flowering plants. A good example of this is the arboretum at Dryandra Forest 
(south-west WA). 


So what if I tell you that the 'special plants' in the Galore Hill arboretum 
were Eremophila, Grevillea, Hakea and Acacia! It was like stumbling across bird 
heaven. I was blown away by the number of flowering plants, all bird 
attracting. As a result Galore Hill has a pretty good bird list, including the 
two rare nomads, Black and Pied Honeyeater! 


So, second stop is the patch of Eremophila that's located immediately after you 
enter the park. I visited in the middle of winter, despite this, almost half 
the species of Eremophila were flowering. Look for honeyeaters such as 
Brown-headed, Fuscous, White-napped, Spiny-cheeked, White-plumed Honeyeater, 
and, if you are lucky, you might find Black and Pied Honeyeater! 


After stopping at the Eremophila patch, it's worth driving along both the Curly 
Heckendorf Drive and the Summit Track, stopping where ever you see or hear bird 
activity. 


Along the Summit Track, Grey Box dominant the lower areas, while and Dwyerís 
Red Gum, Black Cypress-Pine and Drooping Sheoke occur on the upper slopes and 
ridges. In these areas you might see Emu, White-throated and Brown Treecreeper, 
Restless Flycatcher, Varied Siytella, Rufous Songlark, Dusky, White-browed and 
Masked Woodswallow, Variegated Fairy-wren, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred 
Finch. 


The park's really good for robins; while there I saw Hooded, Red-capped, 
Scarlet, Flame and Eastern Yellow Robin and Jacky Winter! In terms of 
Thornbills and their allies there are Speckled Warbler, Weebill Brown, Inland, 
Chestnut-rumped, Buff-rumped, Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill, Western 
Gerygone, and Southern Whiteface! Parrot recorded at Galore Hill include 
Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Superb and Red-rumped Parrot, 
Eastern and Crimson Rosella and Swift Parrot have also been recorded. 


Interestingly the main reason I visited Galore Hill in the first place was to 
look for Glossy Black Cockatoo. Again, like at Cocoparra, unfortunately I 
dipped. 


Finally, there's a Galore Hill bird list on a notice board in the park. It 
includes local bird names. Some are obvious, others not so - here's some 
examples: 


    Soldier Bird  (Noisy Miner)
    Lousy Jack  (Apostlebird)
    Bowacker  (Grey-crowned Babbler)
    Mopoke  (Southern Boobook)
    Whistling Eagle   (Whistling Kite)
    Ground Lark   (Australian Pipit)
    Brown Field Lark  (Singing Bushlark)
    Laughin Jackass   (Laughing Kookaburra)
    Black Backed Magpie  (Australian Magpie)
    White Backed Magpie   (Australian Magpie)
    Pee Wit   (Magpie Lark)
    Black Magpie   (White-winged Chough)
    Grass Parrot   (Red-rumped Parrot)
    Southern Yellow Robin (Eastern Yellow Robin)
    Brown Flycatcher   (Jacky Winter)
    Scissor Grinder   (Restless Flycatcher)
    Spur-winged Plover  (Masked Lapwing)
    Banded Plover   (Banded Lapwing)
    Bottle Swallow  (Welcome Swallow)
    Diamond Sparrow   (Diamond Firetail)
    Little Quail  (Little Button-quail)
    Rainbow Bird  (Rainbow Bee-eater)

Lists like that are simply priceless!

Tim Dolby







_________________________________





This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the 
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information or 
be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended 
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is unauthorised. 
If you have received this email in error, please advise the sender via return 
email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria University does not 
warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects and accepts no 
liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects. 


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Yellow Bittern
From: "Col and Chris Fitzell" <colandchris AT internode.on.net>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 14:36:29 +1000
The Yellow Bittern was showing well this morning at about 9.30 at Wallaroo 
Circuit. The weather was slightly overcast. We also had several short views of 
the Little Bittern, mostly giving the YB a hard time. 

There were several observers at the site and the Bitterns were totally 
undisturbed by our presence 

Colin and Chris Fitzell
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: King Quail
From: "Ross Macfarlane" <rmacfarl AT tpg.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 11:41:58 +1000
James,

I did see one in the Lakes National Park at Easter last year (2013,) just 
off the Lake Reeves Track not far from the jetty to Rotamah Island. I didn't 
submit a report about it although my dad may have submitted the weekend bird 
list to the bird atlas.

Ross Macfarlane

-----Original Message----- 
From: James Mustafa
Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2014 9:14 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] King Quail

Dear all,

I am currently doing a Big Year in Victoria and want to spend some time
searching for the King Quail left in Victoria. I have been given three
spots to try (all three sounding very difficult, if at all possible).
Wilsons Promontory, French Island and the heath lands near Portland. Any
information on King Quail anywhere in Victoria or information on those
three sites in relation to the Kingy's would be enormously appreciated.

If anyone wishes to join me on a King Quail heath bash and search is
welcome to join me!

You can read about my Victorian Big Year attempt here -
http://jamesmustafabirding.blogspot.com.au

All the best,

James Mustafa
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org



_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: (no subject)
From: "Philip Veerman" <pveerman AT pcug.org.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 11:38:39 +1000
Maybe they got lots of ticks     Sorry that is awful.    

And awkward for the bird observer who is innocently going by with binoculars
and maybe cameras.

Yes many of us would have stories like that.
 
-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
david robertson
Sent: Wednesday, 16 July 2014 10:53 AM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] (no subject)


Minnie and I  remember searching the mangroves at the northern end of Cairns
beach and wondered what all the men were doing coming in and out of the
mangroves.  Only later did I realise that it was a meeting point for
homosexuals.

David Robertson

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: (no subject)
From: "david robertson" <drdeath AT picknowl.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 10:23:04 +0930
Minnie and I  remember searching the mangroves at the northern end of Cairns
beach and wondered what all the men were doing coming in and out of the
mangroves.  Only later did I realise that it was a meeting point for
homosexuals.

David Robertson

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: "Stephen Ambrose" <stephen AT ambecol.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 09:19:03 +1000
It can work both ways.

I remember some years ago  a group of us was banding birds in coastal dunes
about 50 km south of Perth.  While we were doing the rounds of the mist nets
a retired couple who had gone for a walk through the dunes came across one
of our temporarily unattended mist nets and found a bird in it.  They
immediately thought that the mist net belonged to a bird smuggler, so freed
the bird and took the mist net away with them as evidence.  Upon arriving at
the location where the mist net had been, we realised that our bird-banding
activities had been disrupted and so we decided to pack up for the day.
Upon arriving back at our cars in a nearby parking area with the
bird-banding gear, the couple who took the mist net enquired in the
strongest terms possible as to what we were doing.  When I explained that we
had been bird-banding as part of a research project, the couple were very
red-faced and apologetic.  They explained that they had assumed we were bird
smugglers, had broken into one of our cars to gather further evidence of
this activity and had called the police.  The police arrived a few minutes
later.  Fortunately, one of the policemen who arrived on the scene was a
friend of my family and was aware of our bird-banding program.  The stolen
incriminating evidence (the mist net and essays) was handed back to me and,
after further brief discussion, everyone headed home.

It was a good thing that this couple was initially concerned about our
activities, concerned enough to call the police. But it was wrong of them to
take the law into their own hands by removing a mist net, and breaking into
someone's car to remove potential items of incrimination (some uni student
essays which I was going to take home and mark overnight!).  Next time we
were banding birds at that location, the couple came along with us out of
interest, which was the best form of education for them. 

Stephen Ambrose
Ryde NSW



-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Green
Sent: Tuesday, 15 July 2014 10:24 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Don't assume

Hi Russell
I heard a perfect saying the other day that fits this thread.

Never assume anything! It makes an "ass" out of "u" and "me".

Bob Green
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: RFI Visiting Darwin and Cairns-Brisbane: Chestnut Rail
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 07:33:09 +0930
You can try Buffalo Creek - donít know how safe it is now, or whether youíd be 
competed with crowds of fishers. 


For myself I prefer Elizabeth River at low tide (morning and afternoon if 
possible), and Stuart Park mangroves. I've several other sites but theyíre 
probably the easiest. Donít get stuck in the mud at Stuart Park as our present 
Administrator did at midnight a few years ago! 


Denise 










On 16 Jul 2014, at 6:03 am, KEN TUCKER  wrote:

> Dear Birding Aussers
> 
> I've been following Birding Aus since before my first visit to Australia in 
1999 and you're always so helpful. I hope somebody might be able to point me in 
the right direction. 

> 
> A few requests for recent information for my trip in July-August - I know you 
get a lot of these, so thank you for reading. I'm doing the standard 
Darwin-Kakadu-Victoria River route, then spending some time near Cairns before 
driving to the Brisbane area with 3 days in Lamington and a wedding at Uki (N 
NSW). I have the 2nd Ed. Thomas & Thomas and the excellent new Dolby & Clarke 
for guidance but would welcome any up to date info on a few particular species. 
If anyone can supply any information, I'd be most grateful. The species are: 

> 
> Darwin area:
> Chestnut Rail - Buffalo Creek and Middle Arm still the best sites near 
Darwin? 

> 
> Brisbane area:
> Powerful Owl - Slaughter Falls still the best near Brisbane? Possible at 
Lamington? 

> Marbled Frogmouth - a good site near Brisbane or should I find them at 
Lamington? 

> Asiatic Dowitcher - at Toorbul, is that the main roosting site commonly known 
as Pelican Point mentioned in Dolby and Clarke? 

> 
> Lewin's Rail - difficult, I know
> 
> Darwin, Cairns or Brisbane:
> Aus Painted Snipe - hahaha yes, I know they're tricky but I have to ask
> 
> Any advice, gratefully received and if I can ever return the favour, do get 
in touch. Thank you for reading this far. 

> Ken
> 
> Ken Tucker
> Portland
> Dorset
> UK
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: birds in Hawai'i
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 07:27:30 +0930
For birders and others interested in Hawaii.  

Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835







Aloha kńĀua,
Because you have expressed interest in our cultural presentations, we thought 
you might like information on this FREE event offered by the Mauna Kea 
Observatories, Mauna Kea Support Services, Office of Mauna Kea Management, and 
the University of Hawai`i Institute for Astronomy. 

Please remember that weather can be cold and changeable at the 9,000 ft 
elevation, so dress appropriately, and fill your gas tank before heading up 
Saddle Road. 

Here is an article on the event: 
http://www.examiner.com/article/birds-of-a-feather-hawaiian-culture-night-program-on-mauna-kea 

The articles have background information on the topic, and travel and safety 
information and links. 

Attached is a flier, and some information you may find useful. Please feel free 
to print it out and post or pass it out! If you know of anyone who may be 
interested, please forward! 

Mahalo no, a me nńĀnńĀ i nńĀ hŇćkŇę,
Leilehua Yuen
Title: Malalo o ka Po Lani ‚Äď "Birds of a Feather"
FaceBook Page: Ma Lalo o ka Po Lani
Presenter: Claudia Ziroli
Date: Saturday, July 19
Time: 6p.m.
Phone: 895-0850
Email: Leilehua AT LeiManu.com
Website: www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis
Location: Visitor Information Station at the 9,300 foot elevation on Mauna Kea
FREE - Seating for this program is first-come first-serve.
Onizuka Center for International Astronomy

Mauna Kea Visitor’s Information Station
Phone: (808) 961-2180 Fax: (808) 969-4892

Malalo o Ka Po Lani
Hawaiian Culture night on Maunakea
Birds of a Feather


Saturday, July 19, 6:00 pm

The Mauna Kea Visitor Information Station’s free monthly program, “Malalo o 
ka Po Lani,‚ÄĚ will be held at the Onizuka Center for International Astronomy 
Visitor Information Station’s presentation room, beginning at 6:00pm. The 
presentation will take place for approximately one hour, with our stargazing 
program following shortly thereafter. 


Explore how feather lei integrate with traditional cultural practices for avian 
resource management when naturalist Claudia Ziroli joins Leilehua Yuen and Manu 
Josiah in Saturday’s Culture Night program. The program fincludes the 
storytelling, chanting, and hula of Leilehua Yuen, and the stories, traditional 
Hawaiian flute music, and guitar music of Manu Josiah. 


Naturalist Claudia Ziroli shares this month on the interrelationship of the 
people, the environment, and traditional Hawaiian culture in this presentation 
on the birds of Mauna Kea. Ziroli hs been a devoted bird watcher throughout her 
life, and developed her interest in Hawaiian birds while working with local 
experts in the field. She has worked as a naturalist on the Island of Hawai`i 
for the past 20 years through the University of Hawai`i at Hilo. 


At one time, vast forests of native mamane trees grew on the slopes of Mauna 
Kea. Ravaged by the over grazing of ungulates, the few remaining trees are the 
primary food source for Hawaii’s native Palila. Mauna Kea’s forested slopes 
are also home to `Apapapne, `Amakihi, `I`iwi, `Elepaio and `Akiapoli`au. 


Hawaiian artists and artisans developed an extensive body of featherworked 
items for apparel and ceremonial display. From skirts to statuary, helmets to 
cloaks, chiefly ceremonial items were intricately feathered. The birds that 
provided these feathers were captured and managed in a variety of ways that 
assured a continuous supply. The kia manu, the bird catcher not only harvested 
the birds, but watched over the health of the bird populations. 


For details, visit: 
www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis
Or phone: 1-808-961-2180
Find us on our FaceBook page, ‚ÄúMa Lalo i ka Po Lani‚ÄĚ

Each month, a different Cultural Practitioner shares perspectives on an aspect 
of Hawaiian culture, history, and or arts relating to the natural history of 
Maunakea. The ‚ÄúMalalo o ka Po Lani‚ÄĚ cultural program is held on the third 
Saturday of every month in the Ellison Onizuka Center for International 
Astronomy Visitor Information Station’s presentation room at the 9,300 ft 
eleveation on Mauna Kea. For more information on programs at the Mauna Kea 
Visitor Information Station please visit our web site: 
www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis or call us at (808) 961-2180. 

Aloha!
After the presentation, join the star party on the lanai of the Ellison Onizuka 
Center for International Astronomy, and enjoy the beauty of the stars from one 
of the world’s premier sites for astronomy. 






_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: RFI Visiting Darwin and Cairns-Brisbane
From: KEN TUCKER <ken.tucker AT btinternet.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 21:33:03 +0100
Dear Birding Aussers

I've been following Birding Aus since before my first visit to Australia in 
1999 and you're always so helpful. I hope somebody might be able to point me in 
the right direction. 


A few requests for recent information for my trip in July-August - I know you 
get a lot of these, so thank you for reading. I'm doing the standard 
Darwin-Kakadu-Victoria River route, then spending some time near Cairns before 
driving to the Brisbane area with 3 days in Lamington and a wedding at Uki (N 
NSW). I have the 2nd Ed. Thomas & Thomas and the excellent new Dolby & Clarke 
for guidance but would welcome any up to date info on a few particular species. 
If anyone can supply any information, I'd be most grateful. The species are: 


Darwin area:
Chestnut Rail - Buffalo Creek and Middle Arm still the best sites near Darwin?

Brisbane area:
Powerful Owl - Slaughter Falls still the best near Brisbane? Possible at 
Lamington? 

Marbled Frogmouth - a good site near Brisbane or should I find them at 
Lamington? 

Asiatic Dowitcher - at Toorbul, is that the main roosting site commonly known 
as Pelican Point mentioned in Dolby and Clarke? 


Lewin's Rail - difficult, I know

Darwin, Cairns or Brisbane:
Aus Painted Snipe - hahaha yes, I know they're tricky but I have to ask

Any advice, gratefully received and if I can ever return the favour, do get in 
touch. Thank you for reading this far. 

Ken

Ken Tucker
Portland
Dorset
UK
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Unusual cockatoo
From: Nikolas Haass <n.haass1 AT uq.edu.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 21:26:46 +0000
Hi Dave,

The switch from yellow to orange pigmentation can also be due to diet
(beta-carotenes).

Nikolas


A/Prof Nikolas Haass | Head, Experimental Melanoma Therapy Group
 
The University of Queensland Diamantina Institute
Level 6 | Translational Research Institute | 37 Kent Street |
Woolloongabba QLD 4102
 
T: +61 (0)7 3443 7087 | M: +61 (0)424 603 579
F: +61 (0)7 3443 6966
E:  n.haass1 AT uq.edu.au | W: www.di.uq.edu.au 
 
 
...Turning scientific discoveries into better treatmentsä
 
CRICOS Code 00025B
 
This email is intended solely for the addressee. It may contain private or
confidential information. If you are not the intended addressee, you must
take no action based on it, nor show a copy to anyone. Kindly notify the
sender by reply email. Opinions and information in this email which do not
relate to the official business of The University of Queensland shall be
understood as neither given nor endorsed by the University






On 16/07/14 7:06 AM, "Dave Torr"  wrote:

>A friend of mine has pictures of a what appears to be a Sulphur-crested
>Cockatoo with an orange crest, taken at Eynesbury (west of Melbourne). She
>is interested to know if this is likely to be a natural mutation or
>whether
>it has been deliberately bred that way and then escaped?
>I can supply a photo if anyone wants to see
>Dave
>_______________________________________________
>Birding-Aus mailing list
>Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
>To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
>http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Unusual cockatoo
From: Dave Torr <davidtorr AT gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 07:06:27 +1000
A friend of mine has pictures of a what appears to be a Sulphur-crested
Cockatoo with an orange crest, taken at Eynesbury (west of Melbourne). She
is interested to know if this is likely to be a natural mutation or whether
it has been deliberately bred that way and then escaped?
I can supply a photo if anyone wants to see
Dave
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 05:08:35 +0930
I like it!

Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835








On 15 Jul 2014, at 9:53 pm, Green  wrote:

> Hi Russell
> I heard a perfect saying the other day that fits this thread.
> 
> Never assume anything! It makes an "ass" out of "u" and "me".
> 
> Bob Green
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Wed, 16 Jul 2014 04:54:28 +0930
In the early 90s Brett Lane and I and a team of field assistants surveyed 
Gouldian Finch in some fairly remote areas. On this occasion we were somewhere 
between Pine Creek and the southern boundary of Kakadu National Park. I knew 
from previous survey work and my contacts that marijhuana was grown in the 
area. Also there were old miners and, I guess one might call them hermits, 
scattered about the place. All were known to take pot shots at strangers. So I 
told the team not to approach any signs of human habitation. 


One day, travelling to a study site from our camp, we came upon a couple of 
tents. I advised the group to skirt widely around them which we did then, and 
on consecutive days. Then one afternoon a couple strode into camp and asked why 
we had been avoiding them. He turned out to be a GEOLOGIST and she his field 
assistant! Very embarrassing. 


Denise







On 15 Jul 2014, at 9:55 pm, Philip Veerman  wrote:

> Yes indeed.
> 
> It also happens the other way. I sent this story to B-A 4 years ago:
> 
> In the early 1980s, I used to bird survey with Graham Leach around Marburg,
> Laidley etc (west of Brisbane). We used to regularly stop on the road
> outside the property, near the gate in view of a nice farm dam, (at about
> the same time on Sunday mornings as Graham followed a regular route). One
> time there was two Australian Hobbies zooming around a large tree and I went
> through the gate to see if maybe they were nesting. Someone came out and
> enquired what were doing. When Graham told them they said they had noticed
> him (or us) several times before and had concluded that we must be "URANIUM
> PROSPECTORS"!
> 
> Philip
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
> Denise Goodfellow
> Sent: Tuesday, 15 July 2014 7:42 PM
> To: Brian Fleming
> Cc: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Don't assume
> 
> 
> Brian, I bet there a many tales like yours, Russell's and mine around.
> Perhaps Birding Aus  should consider running a competition for the funniest
> birding tale!  I'll put up $50 for a prize!
> 
> 
> Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
> PO Box 71
> Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841
> 
> PhD candidate 
> goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au
> 
> Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
> Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
> 043 8650 835
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> On 15 Jul 2014, at 3:11 pm, brian fleming  wrote:
> 
>> Many years ago the devious organizer of a treasure hunt issued the 
>> instruction at the start: Go to XX Park, where you will find a 
>> familiar Ford V8. The password is "Cheese".
>> 
>> At said park a friend found a V8, knocked on the window -"Cheese, 
>> Cheese. Have you got the clues?"You can imagine the reaction!
>> 
>> Brian Fleming (who was innocent)
>> 
>> _______________________________________________
>> Birding-Aus mailing list
>> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
>> To change settings or unsubscribe visit: 
>> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> 

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: "Green" <shriketit AT bigpond.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 21:53:55 +0930
Hi Russell
I heard a perfect saying the other day that fits this thread.

Never assume anything! It makes an "ass" out of "u" and "me".

Bob Green
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Freckled Duck on the Atherton Tablelands + other sightings
From: "Alan Gillanders" <alan AT alanswildlifetours.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 22:00:49 +1000
Greetings,
At least 13 Freckled Duck on Hasties Swamp yesterday. Pink-eared Duck numbers 
are on the increase too. 


Saw a Bustard with an extended neck ruff which is odd for this time of year in 
the north. Cranes often between Atherton, Malanda and Bromfield Swamp. Many 
roosting south of Ball Road which turns off Curtain Fig Road. One Grass Owl 
near this junction. My Barn Owls have three chicks this year and one has left 
the nest a little early. Could not find it this morning but no feathers either 
so hope it is now able to fly. Double-eyed Fig-Parrots in the car park at the 
fig but the fruit is almost finished. 


Reports of Yellow Wagtail at Black Gully, Tinaroo but not there when I looked.
Regards,
Alan

Alan's Wildlife Tours
2 Mather Road
Yungaburra 4884

Phone 07 4095 3784
Mobile 0408 953 786
http://www.alanswildlifetours.com.au/
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: King Quail
From: James Mustafa <jamesmustafamusic AT gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 21:14:56 +1000
Dear all,

I am currently doing a Big Year in Victoria and want to spend some time
searching for the King Quail left in Victoria. I have been given three
spots to try (all three sounding very difficult, if at all possible).
Wilsons Promontory, French Island and the heath lands near Portland. Any
information on King Quail anywhere in Victoria or information on those
three sites in relation to the Kingy's would be enormously appreciated.

If anyone wishes to join me on a King Quail heath bash and search is
welcome to join me!

You can read about my Victorian Big Year attempt here -
http://jamesmustafabirding.blogspot.com.au

All the best,

James Mustafa
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: Allan Richardson <albirdo AT bigpond.net.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 21:44:53 +1000
I have a similar story and although not really that humorous, it does make you 
realise how we assume everyone else is on the same wavelength as us. 


It was 2011, before Mt Lyndhurst was off limits to birders. 

We had driven in from the north past the site to pay our fee for site admission 
at the Lyndhurst pub and had spent a few hours looking round. We saw 
Thick-billed Grasswren throughout the area, but the Chestnut-breasted Whiteface 
were proving more time consuming. 


We walked out to the front of the site and there was a gentleman walking around 
not far from the rusty car - obviously this guy must be here for the birds, so 
I thought it only right that I go over and give him the good oil on what we had 
seen so far. 


Dip doo - when I started dribbling on about Grasswrens all I got was a blank 
look, birds?? I'm here to see the car mate! and with that we parted 
company.......... 


The car was much better than what I had expected it to be, but to go all the 
way out there to see it? He must have been thinking the same thing about the 
birds. All a matter of perspective!! 


As for the Whiteface, I had wasted all this time following up other folk's oil 
and in the end I just went back to birding basics. 


There were well worn tracks across the landscape, so we just followed them 
slowly in the car seeking out mixed passerine foraging groups. We came across a 
flock of Orange Chats and voila the Whitefaces were with them....... 


Allan Richardson
Morisset NSW

On 15/07/2014, at 7:42 PM, Denise Goodfellow wrote:

> Brian, I bet there a many tales like yours, Russellís and mine around. 
Perhaps Birding Aus should consider running a competition for the funniest 
birding tale! Iíll put up $50 for a prize! 

> 
> 
> Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
> PO Box 71
> Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841
> 
> PhD candidate 
> goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au
> 
> Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
> Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
> 043 8650 835
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> On 15 Jul 2014, at 3:11 pm, brian fleming  wrote:
> 
>> Many years ago the devious organizer of a treasure hunt issued the 
instruction at the start: Go to XX Park, where you will find a familiar Ford 
V8. The password is "Cheese". 

>> 
>> At said park a friend found a V8, knocked on the window -"Cheese, Cheese. 
Have you got the clues?"You can imagine the reaction! 

>> 
>> Brian Fleming (who was innocent)
>> 
>> _______________________________________________
>> Birding-Aus mailing list
>> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
>> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
>> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 19:12:28 +0930
Brian, I bet there a many tales like yours, Russellís and mine around. Perhaps 
Birding Aus should consider running a competition for the funniest birding 
tale! Iíll put up $50 for a prize! 



Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835








On 15 Jul 2014, at 3:11 pm, brian fleming  wrote:

> Many years ago the devious organizer of a treasure hunt issued the 
instruction at the start: Go to XX Park, where you will find a familiar Ford 
V8. The password is "Cheese". 

> 
> At said park a friend found a V8, knocked on the window -"Cheese, Cheese. 
Have you got the clues?"You can imagine the reaction! 

> 
> Brian Fleming (who was innocent)
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Southern Cassowary
From: Jude Lattaway <2roaminoz AT gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 17:53:12 +1000
I was over the moon with delight discovering a Southern Cassowary in
Wheatley Road, which connects South Mission Beach to Wongaling Beach.

Jude

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: brian fleming <flambeau AT labyrinth.net.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 15:41:49 +1000
Many years ago the devious organizer of a treasure hunt issued the 
instruction at the start: Go to XX Park, where you will find a familiar 
Ford V8. The password is "Cheese".

At said park a friend found a V8, knocked on the window -"Cheese, 
Cheese. Have you got the clues?"You can imagine the reaction!

Brian Fleming (who was innocent)

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: RFI Pokolbin
From: Youngs FamilyMail <youngsfamilymail AT gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 15:10:36 +1000
Thank you to Mick, Sue and Jill for all your advice.

I wasn't able to get to do too much birding, but I did manage to get a few
hours here and there, albeit only around the hotel grounds and the Hunter
Valley Gardens. I did get to see 2 Babblers that were on the corner of
Broke and McDonald road's on 2 occasions. I also interestingly enough saw 2
female Satin Bowerbirds in the same location.
Unfortunately the only wombat that I saw was 1 that was permanently
sleeping on the side of the road. Maybe next time I'll spot a more active
one. Lots of Eastern Grey's around the place too.
The gardens has some nice bird there, including the world's friendliest
Grey Shrike-thrush. The flowering Eucalyptus (Ironbarks?) in our hotel
grounds had plenty of Lorikeet in them, but not much else.

Thanks again for all the advice,

Regards,
Mark
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Japan: Advice needed
From: "Jenny Stiles" <jstiles AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 14:40:21 +1000
Thanks Helen,
It is encouraging to hear from lots of people who have had good experiences in 
Japan! Thank you for all your suggestions. I think quite a bit of the Imperial 
Palace grounds is out of bounds to the general public, but it sounds like it is 
still worth a visit. 


From Jenny


From: Helen Larson 
Sent: Monday, July 14, 2014 12:39 PM
To: jstiles AT optusnet.com.au ; birding-aus AT birding-aus.org 
Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] Japan: Advice needed

Hello Jenny
 I have visited Japan a number of times but only get to go birding on weekends. 
I agree with Sonja in that the Meiji Shrine park is very good for birds as long 
as you take your time and listen, sometimes there's lots of people. And if the 
Mandarin ducks are still there in the northern pond you may have to battle with 
the photographers. Ueno Park in the middle of the city is the best duck place 
and is also good for other birds as well as people-watching. The moat around 
the Imperial Palace has Spot-billed ducks, pochards and others and they are 
often near the bridge to the main entrance gate. The grounds of the Palace have 
many good birds (robins and shrikes etc) but am not sure if all is open to the 
public (I had visitor access to the Imperial fish collection and grounds). 

 Nara and Nikko are must-sees - the Cryptomeria forest and buildings at Nara 
are just wonderful, raining or not. Also Mount Takao National Park is worth a 
visit for a scenic walking day - it's a longish train trip but you'll know you 
are nearly there when you realise the remaining passengers are all wearing 
various types of hiking gear. It's crowded in fine weather but great walks up 
and around scenic hills and forest with small shrines and small shops selling 
odd refreshments. And there's even birds there. 

 Travelling by trains is easy as long as you know where you want to go as the 
station staff are helpful. Actually everyone is - I once had a lady shut up her 
tiny noodle stall by a train station and take me by the hand to lead me round 
the corner to show me my hotel (she spoke no English but understood the kanji 
version of my hotel name). I always get a station bento box and can of green 
tea from shop or machine before a train ride so am ready for anything. 

 As I usually stay in cheap hotels with tiny rooms in Tokyo (but very clean and 
safe) I cannot advise. A minshuku or ryokan (Japanese inn) is a good way to 
stay - you will get breakfast and dinner (you must let them know if you are 
going to eat dinner elsewhere). Plus you get to live and sleep in tatami rooms. 
Have had some very delicious dinners at these places (outside Tokyo); sometimes 
you go to a dining room but usually your dinner is brought to your room (then 
you get to try to identify everything), very restful way to end a day. 

   Do have fun, and enjoy the vending machines. 
Helen

<')/////==<


> From: sonja.ross7 AT gmail.com
> Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 11:03:43 +1000
> To: jstiles AT optusnet.com.au
> CC: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Japan: Advice needed
> 
> Hi Jenny,
> 
> My husband and I have been to Japan a couple of times and travelled by train 
most of the time. It isn't quite as convenient as having a car with drinks etc 
but the trains run on time and are clean and most have electronic messages near 
the carriage end alternating between Japanese and English which makes it much 
easier than the first time we were there. 

> 
> We were there in February last time, and I found the parks had birds. In 
Tokyo, I found the gardens near the Meiji Shrine to be good, and some birds in 
the Shinjuku Goyen National Garden, both of which have the advantage of not 
being too far from stations. (My lists are on e-Bird). 

> 
> We did go out to see the snow monkeys and it is a bit "unnatural" in that 
they are fed, and their pool has been obviously purpose built. It also takes a 
bit of time to get to it from Nagano (can't remember exactly, but think an hour 
or so). There was snow when we were there which added to it. I didn't see many 
birds there, but it was winter. 

> 
> We enjoyed Nara, and I saw quite a few birds there despite it raining for the 
time we were there. It is probably a bit less commercial than Kyoto, and there 
are deer there. 

> 
> If you end up having time, Nikko is an interesting place to visit, although I 
didn't see a lot of birds there. My husband enjoyed Okayama Castle (and your 
boys might too) and you could go for a walk in the park across the river where 
I saw quite a few species. 

> 
> I hope that helps, but feel free to email me if you want to know more.
> 
> Sonja
> 
> 
> On 14/07/2014, at 10:29 AM, "Jenny Stiles"  wrote:
> 
> > Hi All,
> > I would very much appreciate some advice on travelling to Japan at the end 
of October this year after my youngest son finishes the HSC. Normally I pick 
the holidays and have very definite goal in mind, but this time my "men" have 
chosen but their goals are vague [weird vending machines, cool castles, weird 
people, snow monkeys, Mt Fuji, Hiroshima, Kyoto] 

> > This will be a family holiday, so the only birding will be incidental or to 
a place that everyone will enjoy! Of course I do hope to sneak some [lots?] in 
and would also like to see some of the native mammals!! My sons are 23, 21 [has 
autism] & 18 and are pretty tolerant of birding stops. 

> > So far the rough itinerary is as follows: Tokyo [2 or 3 nights], Nikko [1 
night], Nagano (to see the snow monkeys*) [1 night], Hakone [1 night], Kyoto [3 
nights or maybe 2 & 1 night at Nara], Hiroshima [2 nights], Osaka [1 night] & 
fly home from there. There is still scope to add in a few more stops or extend 
the ones I have selected. 

> > 
> > I have found it all a bit overwhelming actually, especially thinking about 
travelling by train and bus rather than a car [used to just stashing suitcases 
in the hire car, not having them with us!] and I have no idea how to choose 
hotels, so any recommendations would be extremely welcome. I gather there are 
not going to be rooms that sleep 5, so I assume we will need 2 rooms? One for 
my husband and myself & my son with autism & another for my other 2 sons. I 
hope there are rooms that fit 3 people? 

> > 
> > Has anyone been out to see the Snow Monkeys at Jigokudani Yaen-koen? We are 
really keen to see some Japanese Macaques and it sounds like the scenery is 
pretty & I hoped to see some birds too, but there is another monkey park in 
easy reach of Kyoto, so wondered if the Jigokudani Yaen-koen park is worth the 
extra effort. Lonely Planet gives it a terrible review but visitors posting on 
Trip Advisor seems to be very happy on the whole. 

> > 
> > Any advice of where in the various Tokyo parks would have the best chance 
of birds would be good too. I have looked on Eremaea to get the names of likely 
spots, but since I will be dragging non birders about it would be great to have 
some specific instructions! For instance, the moat around the Imperial Palace 
looks pretty big so it would be great to know if there is a section that is 
more likely to have ducks. 

> > 
> > Thank you for taking the time to read my email.
> > 
> > From Jenny Stiles, Sydney
> > 
> > 
> > 
> > _______________________________________________
> > Birding-Aus mailing list
> > Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> > To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> > http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> 
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Japan: Advice needed
From: "Jenny Stiles" <jstiles AT optusnet.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 14:31:55 +1000
Thanks very much Sonja,
Nikko was meant to be on my list! It looks well worth a trip to see the 
intricate temple.

I have taken notes from your and other lists on Eremaea; there are 
surprisingly few though & none at all for lots of regions [Hiroshima for 
instance]. There look to be a few promising parks in Tokyo.

I am sure we will have an interesting time.

From Jenny Stiles




-----Original Message----- 
From: Sonja Ross
Sent: Monday, July 14, 2014 11:03 AM
To: Jenny Stiles
Cc: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Japan: Advice needed

Hi Jenny,

My husband and I have been to Japan a couple of times and travelled by train 
most of the time.  It isn't quite as convenient as having a car with drinks 
etc but the trains run on time and are clean and most have electronic 
messages near the carriage end alternating between Japanese and English 
which makes it much easier than the first time we were there.

We were there in February last time, and I found the parks had birds.   In 
Tokyo, I found the gardens near the Meiji Shrine to be good, and some birds 
in the Shinjuku Goyen National Garden, both of which have the advantage of 
not being too far from stations.  (My lists are on e-Bird).

We did go out to see the snow monkeys and it is a bit "unnatural" in that 
they are fed, and their pool has been obviously purpose built.  It also 
takes a bit of time to get to it from Nagano (can't remember exactly, but 
think an hour or so).   There was snow when we were there which added to it. 
I didn't see many birds there, but it was winter.

We enjoyed Nara, and I saw quite a few birds there despite it raining for 
the time we were there.  It is probably a bit less commercial than Kyoto, 
and there are deer there.

If you end up having time, Nikko is an interesting place to visit, although 
I didn't see a lot of birds there.   My husband enjoyed Okayama Castle (and 
your boys might too) and you could go for a walk in the park across the 
river where I saw quite a few species.

I hope that helps, but feel free to email me if you want to know more.

Sonja


On 14/07/2014, at 10:29 AM, "Jenny Stiles"  wrote:

> Hi All,
> I would very much appreciate some advice on travelling to Japan at the end 
> of October this year after my youngest son finishes the HSC. Normally I 
> pick the holidays and have very definite goal in mind, but this time my 
> "men" have chosen but their goals are vague [weird vending machines, cool 
> castles, weird people, snow monkeys, Mt Fuji, Hiroshima, Kyoto]
> This will be a family holiday, so the only birding will be incidental or 
> to a place that everyone will enjoy! Of course I do hope to sneak some 
> [lots?] in and would also like to see some of the native mammals!! My sons 
> are 23, 21 [has autism] & 18 and are pretty tolerant of birding stops.
> So far the rough itinerary is as follows: Tokyo [2 or 3 nights], Nikko [1 
> night], Nagano (to see the snow monkeys*) [1 night], Hakone [1 night], 
> Kyoto [3 nights or maybe 2 & 1 night at Nara], Hiroshima [2 nights], Osaka 
> [1 night] & fly home from there. There is still scope to add in a few more 
> stops or extend the ones I have selected.
>
> I have found it all a bit overwhelming actually, especially thinking about 
> travelling by train and bus rather than a car [used to just stashing 
> suitcases in the hire car, not having them with us!] and I have no idea 
> how to choose hotels, so any recommendations would be extremely welcome. I 
> gather there are not going to be rooms that sleep 5, so I assume we will 
> need 2 rooms? One for my husband and myself & my son with autism & another 
> for my other 2 sons. I hope there are rooms that fit 3 people?
>
> Has anyone been out to see the Snow Monkeys at Jigokudani Yaen-koen? We 
> are really keen to see some Japanese Macaques and it sounds like the 
> scenery is pretty & I hoped to see some birds too, but there is another 
> monkey park in easy reach of Kyoto, so wondered if the Jigokudani 
> Yaen-koen park is worth the extra effort. Lonely Planet gives it a 
> terrible review but visitors posting on Trip Advisor seems to be very 
> happy on the whole.
>
> Any advice of where in the various Tokyo parks would have the best chance 
> of birds would be good too. I have looked on Eremaea to get the names of 
> likely spots, but since I will be dragging non birders about it would be 
> great to have some specific instructions! For instance, the moat around 
> the Imperial Palace looks pretty big so it would be great to know if there 
> is a section that is more likely to have ducks.
>
> Thank you for taking the time to read my email.
>
> From Jenny Stiles, Sydney
>
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Pacific Black Duck ID
From: "Els and Bill" <elsandbill AT iprimus.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 13:59:32 +1000

Subject: Pacific Black Duck ID

Regarding the previous flurry of emails about hybridising Mallards and Pacific 
Black Ducks, I would like to mention that HANZAB does not mention any orange 
colouring of legs of Pacific Black Duck. 

  
In my experience in Tasmania, the only orange legs occur on Mallards crossed 
with Pacific Black Duck,Chestnut Teal,Grey Teal and Shovelers. 


In fact Tasmanian Local Governments bodies contract professionals to remove 
these hybrids when they build up in large numbers where the public feed them, 
posing a threat to the native ducks. One of the main method used for 
identification of the native Pacific Black Duck is the brown colour of their 
legs. 


Els Wakefield.
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 10:57:31 +0930
It happens! I made a similar request up here of occupants in a car (about 
another bird, of course). They were not happy. Turned out they were plain 
clothes police keeping a house under surveillance! 




Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835








On 15 Jul 2014, at 10:49 am, Russell Woodford  wrote:

> Further to my little lecture on perspective last night, another cautionary 
tale: 

> 
> Don't assume that vehicles parked in a known birding hotspot are looking for 
birds. Stopped at the well-publicized Banded Lapwing spot on Beach Rd at Avalon 
(Vic) this morning and noticed one vehicle was empty - then asked the man and 
woman in the second vehicle if they were looking for the Banded Lapwings (I 
hadn't been able to spot any as I drove out to WTP earlier). They gave me an 
odd look, said "No!" and wound their window back up. I didn't bother hanging 
round to try to spot the lapwings .... 

> 
> 
> 
> Russell Woodford
> Birding-Aus List Owner
> 
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Yellow Bittern at North Lakes as a sociological study; any apologies to Sandra?
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 07:14:26 +0930
As someone whose post grad study is on the sociology of birders (US in this 
case), I admit to finding the responses to Sandraís original email rather 
interesting as well. However, I was also dismayed, a) by the nature of the 
attacks on Sandra, and b), because some Birding Aussers seem unaware that some 
birders and photographers do behave badly. And Iíve not seen any indication 
that those who sailed into the attack, have offered an apology to Sandra. 


Australian society seems ill-equipped to deal with the minority who do behave 
badly, like the birders who trespassed while trying to get a better look at the 
Red Goshawk at Mataranka, and the photographer who attempted to climb its 
nesting tree. The consequences can be out of proportion to the action. Which is 
why, when organising a tourism project with Kunwinjku people in Arnhem Land 
some years ago, elders and I decided to avoid attracting visitors who might 
behave in such a way whatever their interests. 


At least now, if a Yellow Bittern or some other interesting bird turns up here 
at Darwin River, I have a better idea of whom I can safely tell. 


 
Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835








On 14 Jul 2014, at 5:10 pm, Carl Clifford  wrote:

> At least the Yellow Bittern affair has served a purpose. My daughter is 
studying for a degree in sociology. She and her class mates have been studying 
this thread and several other similar threads with quite some interest. Nice to 
know that B-A brouhahas are serving are aiding the world of academe. 

> 
> Carl Clifford
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: "Tony Russell" <pratincole08 AT gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 11:14:20 +0930
Yes, had a similar experience a few years ago in a conservation park north
of Brisbane inland from the Sunshine Coast. Like your case Russ there was
another car parked with someone in it. When we returned from our walk our
hire car had been broken into and some of our gear stolen. One of us should
have stayed with the car and do now.

-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Russell Woodford
Sent: Tuesday, 15 July 2014 10:49 AM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] Don't assume

Further to my little lecture on perspective last night, another cautionary
tale:

Don't assume that vehicles parked in a known birding hotspot are looking for
birds. Stopped at the well-publicized Banded Lapwing spot on Beach Rd at
Avalon (Vic) this morning and noticed one vehicle was empty - then asked the
man and woman in the second vehicle if they were looking for the Banded
Lapwings (I hadn't been able to spot any as I drove out to WTP earlier).
They gave me an odd look, said "No!" and wound their window back up. I
didn't bother hanging round to try to spot the lapwings ....



Russell Woodford
Birding-Aus List Owner


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Don't assume
From: Denise Goodfellow <goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 10:57:31 +0930
It happens! I made a similar request up here of occupants in a car (about 
another bird, of course). They were not happy. Turned out they were plain 
clothes police keeping a house under surveillance! 




Denise Lawungkurr  Goodfellow
PO Box 71
Darwin River, NT, Australia 0841

PhD candidate 
goodfellow AT bigpond.com.au

Founding Member: Ecotourism Australia
Founding Member: Australian Federation of Graduate Women Northern Territory
043 8650 835








On 15 Jul 2014, at 10:49 am, Russell Woodford  wrote:

> Further to my little lecture on perspective last night, another cautionary 
tale: 

> 
> Don't assume that vehicles parked in a known birding hotspot are looking for 
birds. Stopped at the well-publicized Banded Lapwing spot on Beach Rd at Avalon 
(Vic) this morning and noticed one vehicle was empty - then asked the man and 
woman in the second vehicle if they were looking for the Banded Lapwings (I 
hadn't been able to spot any as I drove out to WTP earlier). They gave me an 
odd look, said "No!" and wound their window back up. I didn't bother hanging 
round to try to spot the lapwings .... 

> 
> 
> 
> Russell Woodford
> Birding-Aus List Owner
> 
> 
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org

_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Don't assume
From: Russell Woodford <rdwoodford AT gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 11:19:19 +1000
Further to my little lecture on perspective last night, another cautionary 
tale: 


Don't assume that vehicles parked in a known birding hotspot are looking for 
birds. Stopped at the well-publicized Banded Lapwing spot on Beach Rd at Avalon 
(Vic) this morning and noticed one vehicle was empty - then asked the man and 
woman in the second vehicle if they were looking for the Banded Lapwings (I 
hadn't been able to spot any as I drove out to WTP earlier). They gave me an 
odd look, said "No!" and wound their window back up. I didn't bother hanging 
round to try to spot the lapwings .... 




Russell Woodford
Birding-Aus List Owner


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Ken Simpson
From: "Tony Russell" <pratincole08 AT gmail.com>
Date: Tue, 15 Jul 2014 10:11:53 +0930
The passing of Ken is a sad time for us all. I recall having some contacts
with him many years ago when I pointed out a small discrepancy in one of his
field guides. There was a mix up in beak colours of some northern finches, I
think it involved Long-tailed and/or Masked Finches. Ken responded to my
information by checking his data and amending his next edition and being
gracious enough to mention me in the acknowledgements. 
I also met both him and Nick Day on the boardwalks at the Nobbies whilst
twitching a House Crow on Philip Island. We found it and Nick got some
camera shots. 
His field guides have always been my books of choice in the field, being of
a convenient size for travel. I remain ever grateful for his work in helping
me in my birding endeavours. A great man, kindly remembered.

Tony.



-----Original Message-----
From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf Of
Ceri Pearce
Sent: Monday, 14 July 2014 7:16 PM
To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
Subject: [Birding-Aus] Ken Simpson

Philip, I remember that flyer in 1976. I was a teenager and young member of
BOC. I participated in that bird behavioural study during the eclipse at
Daylesford, Victoria. It was one of those defining bird watching experiences
I will never forget. So both you and Ken Simpson inspired my love of bird
watching. Thank you. Sincere condolences to Kens family, friends and
colleagues. Best wishes, Ceri Pearce
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org


_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Yellow Bittern at North Lakes
From: Russell Woodford <rdwoodford AT gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 22:40:59 +1000
I think it's time we all took a deep breath, and stopped the "he said - she
said" arguments that are in same cases edging close to the grey area around
defamation. We are all essentially on the same side here - as people who
like to look at birds in the wild.

We should save our energies for attacking people who prefer to take birds
out of the wild and trade them illegally; or people who want to destroy
habitat for their own financial gain; or people who want to destroy birds
for 'sport.' There is little sense attacking each other over what might or
might not have been implied, or about what some birders might or might not
have done. Please remember PERSPECTIVE - just like the blind men and the
elephant, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blind_men_and_an_elephant  we all
understand the same incident from slightly different views, so we all see
something different ...
The parable of the Bittern:
Three birders are looking at a Yellow Bittern see it fly away to a nearby
golf course. One noticed a photographer getting quite close for a shot
("the photographer scared it away");  the second birder saw a Little
Bittern charge at the Yellow ("The Little Bittern is breeding and chasing
off the Yellow"); a third birder noticed that the Yellow Bittern flushed
whenever the wind gusted from a certain direction ("The Bittern is spooked
by the wind blowing the reeds!"). OK I made up the last one, and this
really isn't a parable, but I think you understand what I mean. We all
interpret what we see to confirm the things we believe, or the stances we
already hold. We all see the same things slightly differently - and we are
all correct (to ourselves), because we've seen it with our OWN eyes!

So please  - let's stop attacking each other, and instead focus on the
positives. There is a Yellow Bittern at North Lakes. It may have been there
for a while. It may stay around for a while. Many of us may be lucky enough
to see it. At some stage, someone will dip, but they might get to watch a
pair of Little Bitterns instead (I've seen Yellow, but not Little!) or some
other great birds nearby, like that Dowitcher.  There are too many great
bids to see to waste time trying to prove that my perspective is right and
yours is wrong - so let's do some (responsible) birding instead.

Russell Woodford
Birding-Aus List Owner

PS Please don't make me have to ban the term "Yellow Bittern" from
BIrding-Aus!


On 14 July 2014 17:14, cgregory123 .  wrote:

> The moderators of this site should step in to not only put an end to this
> wearisome thread but also to make this point. On no account will they allow
> a post on this forum that names and shames a member of the public, as has
> been suggested by several people. The simple reason is that member of the
> public, so named, has committed no crime. That member of the public "named
> and shamed"  will then have a quite justifiable claim for harassment,
> defamation, libel - you name it - against the poster and maybe the
> moderators themselves, who allowed the post through to a public site. We
> live in a litigious world - tread carefully.
>
> Chris Gregory
>
>
> On 14 July 2014 07:51, Sandra Gallienne  wrote:
>
> > What makes you people think that you have the right to criticise and
> > falsely
> > accuse me on a public forum?  Do I have warts on my nose and a wear a
> > pointy
> > black hat - should I perhaps be burnt at the stake?   I'm actually very
> > glad
> > the bird returned to the original site and put on such a good performance
> > for you all and that you were able to obtain lovely photographs of it.
>  I'm
> > not against photographers nor am I trying to stir up trouble as some of
> you
> > allege, I take photos too, as I'm sure you can see if any of you read the
> > Recent Lists on the ebird website.
> >
> > I VOLUNTEER hours of my time as a Birdline Moderator to publish your
> > reports
> > as quickly as possible to enable you all to go out and see these
> rarities.
> > Then I have to index all your sightings to the birdata atlas - something
> > which takes me literally hours attempting to locate your obscure sites on
> > Whereis or Google Earth - all so that atlas data can be as accurate as
> > possible, all because you people don't give precise information and take
> > for
> > granted the work that goes on behind the scenes to enhance YOUR enjoyment
> > of
> > birding.  I often get requests to help identify photographs of obscure
> > birds
> > which I often have to check out online or in HANZAB, something I
> willingly
> > do, to help newer birders with their passion - ALL AT NO COST TO ANYONE.
> >
> > Now, in answer to some of your accusations, I state the following:
> >
> > I can provide a name of the eyewitness to whom I spoke as well as the
> name
> > of another person who sent an email to me about the trespassing on the
> golf
> > course.   Below is the body of that email:
> >
> > "I have just been up to North Lakes to see "the BIRD". ... When I
> arrived I
> > was told that it was now showing over on the lagoon at the golf course
> just
> > across the road. On walking over that way I saw a number of people
> looking
> > at the bittern from within the golf course boundaries. Stupidly, without
> > thinking I joined the group and had a look at it. We were soon approached
> > by
> > the course ranger and asked to leave and not to come on the course
> without
> > getting permission. And rightly so. There were no golfers around when I
> was
> > there and nor did we attempt to walk near the greens etc, but we should
> not
> > have been there. Not only is it a private course but it can be very
> > dangerous as golf balls strikes have been known to kill people.
> >
> > So I am just wondering if you could get a note out to other birders to
> not
> > encroach on the golf course. I don't want other birders (like our little
> > group) giving birders in general a black mark.
> >
> > Sorry about this but I feel compelled to get the message out as soon as
> > possible."
> >
> > However, at this point I don't believe it would make any difference to
> the
> > current hysteria to name them.
> >
> > The eyewitness to whom I spoke said he didn't know the names of the
> > photographers he alleges he saw chase and flush the bird and to involve
> him
> > at this stage would only have another birder maligned.  I believe also
> that
> > through the chain of events that occurred before I made my birding-aus
> post
> > which involved phone calls with at least 3 people, that I may have
> > misunderstood the initial part of the chain of events explained to me by
> > this witness that involved the moving on of the bird from the original
> site
> > to the golf course.  However, this does not alter the fact that the bird
> > was
> > later flushed from the golf course.
> >
> > I also have some emails from a BQ member calling for calm on this issue
> and
> > confirming my statement that there was an eyewitness who saw what I have
> > claimed.  These are below:
> >
> > First email:
> > "Mike has been to North Lakes this morning and the Yellow Bittern has
> > returned to its original location. (he has just phoned in his report)
> There
> > are plenty of birdos there getting wonderful shots without disturbing the
> > bird at all.  They all seem to be behaving themselves.
> > The story of some "enthusiastic" birdos flushing the bird several times
> > yesterday have been confirmed, but these birdos were not known to a BQ
> > member that was there yesterday.
> >
> > Lindy West"
> >
> > Second email:
> > Calm down children.
> > The latest in the Yellow Bittern saga is that the bird has been reliable
> > reported as leaving the pond at Wallaroo Circuit WITHOUT harassment by
> > birdos.
> > However there is NO doubt that (unknown) photographers followed it onto
> the
> > golf course and their "pushy" actions there caused it to flush at least
> > twice.
> > The bird has now returned to its home (of possibly two years or more
> > according to local residents).
> >
> > Watch this space.
> >
> > Mike West"
> >
> >
> > There is also a claim being made by two people present at the site, Jim
> > Sneddon & Nicolette Thompson, that the bird was not seen at the Wallaroo
> > Circuit site that morning.
> > However, there have been two lists entered onto ebird by two different
> > observers from Friday morning at two different starting times 0800 and
> > 1000,
> > that both record the Yellow Bittern at the lagoon as well as one at 0810
> > that only recorded the Australian Little Bittern so I don't know at what
> > time the bird left the Lagoon and went to the golf course but it appears
> > from these lists that in fact, it was present at the Lagoon despite their
> > claims to the contrary.
> >
> > It seems that my intended message that the bird had left the site and its
> > whereabouts were unknown was unappreciated by you lot.  However, if you'd
> > all attended the site and later found out that the Birdline Moderators
> had
> > known that the bird had left and NOT alerted you to the fact, there would
> > still be sour comments made.  It is your good fortune that the bird has
> > returned.
> >
> > I also point out that I am not, have not and will not be asking for
> anyone
> > to be named and shamed and I hope the above information is enough to
> settle
> > the disgruntlement that you people seem to feel entitled to express and
> > share publicly (also known as bullying) with complete disregard to the
> > humiliation and damage you do to other's reputations.
> >
> > In the words of the wise BQ member above - CALM DOWN CHILDREN.
> >
> > Sandra Gallienne
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Birding-Aus [mailto:birding-aus-bounces AT birding-aus.org] On Behalf
> > Of
> > Colin R
> > Sent: Sunday, 13 July 2014 6:31 PM
> > To: birding-aus AT birding-aus.org
> > Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Yellow Bittern at North Lakes
> >
> > Well said Nicci
> >
> > I wasn't there on Friday but I was on Saturday morning from dawn until
> > 8.30am or thereabouts. I hadn't read Ms Gallienne's 'instruction' at that
> > time, but it was a topic of discussion on site. I later met a birder
> > offsite
> > who had not gone to North Lakes because of her 'directions'!
> >
> > My post of Saturday on Eremaea which described the group of birders on
> site
> > that morning has been removed. I have requested an explanation for that.
> >
> > All in all the birders and photographers who were present on Saturday
> > morning were, as I said in my 'sighting' report "quiet and respectful'
> > and the bird/s completely undisturbed - and, I understand from someone
> who
> > was present on Friday, a similar situation was experienced that morning
> too
> > - as the numerous reports since have also described.
> > I, too, want to know how Ms Gallienne feels she has the authority to
> > instruct birders on their behaviour and, or, whether they should visit a
> > site?
> >
> > The claims of damaged vegetation, disturbed birds and bad behaviour by
> > photographers are causing unnecessary grief and recrimination and
> driving a
> > split in the birding community in SE Qld - even drawing comments from
> > people
> > interstate, for God's sake, who aren't here and don't know the
> individuals
> > concerned!
> >
> > If this is really happening - provide proof. Otherwise stop throwing it
> > around and move on. Life is too short.
> >
> > Colin
> >
> >
> > On Sun, Jul 13, 2014, at 04:23 PM, Nicolette Thompson wrote:
> > > I was one of the birders at North Lakes on Friday.  I saw the email
> > > from Sandra Gallienne when I arrived home last night and immediately
> > > let her know that her account of the day was not based on fact.  I did
> > > this in the hope that she would retract her statement and thus avoid
> > > the usual acrimonious emails.  She has neither done this nor responded
> > > to me.
> > >
> > > On Friday morning the Yellow Bittern was not at the lake where Paul
> > > had seen it.  When I and a friend arrived we met two birders who had
> > > been there since early morning and who had not seen the bird. It was
> > > not FLUSHED by birders or photographers.  It simply was not there.  I
> > > did speak to a few folk who had left the footpaths contrary to Paul's
> > > request. Some moved back immediately and only a couple remained where
> > > they were.  There are always a couple of people in any group to whom
> > > any considerations don't apply, aren't there?  Anyway they didn't
> > > flush or chase the bird as it wasn't there.  The waterfowl were
> > > foraging or loafing in and around the lake and were in no way
> > > perturbed by the dozen or so watchers plus various bikers, walkers and
> > > dog walkers who I guess are regulars in the area.
> > >
> > > Late morning a gentleman came back to the lake to let us know that the
> > > YB was across the road at the Golf Club. There was no great rush
> > > across.  As the message spread folk walked across to the pond to watch
> > > or photograph the bird.  Eventually officials from the Gold Club came
> > > to talk to us because the pond was in the line of fire from the
> > > golfers and it was a safety issue.
> > >
> > > They were very interested once they knew what we were doing.  After a
> > > discussion about safety issues versus our interests they were going to
> > > work on  some management strategies for the following day so that both
> > > could be satisfied.  We left at midday, so I can't comment on anything
> > > that happened after that .
> > >
> > > Sadly, Sandra's email has caused a lot of angst and unnecessary
> > > back-biting on this forum.
> > >
> > > I would also like to know on what grounds Sandra has given herself the
> > > authority to tell us that 'birders are now asked to refrain from
> > > visiting this site'
> > >
> > > Nicci Thompson
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > Birding-Aus mailing list
> > > Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> > > To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> > > http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> >
> >
> > --
> >   Colin Reid
> >   jangles AT fastmail.fm
> > So many birds, so little time......
> >
> > --
> > http://www.fastmail.fm - Same, same, but different...
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Birding-Aus mailing list
> > Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> > To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> > http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Birding-Aus mailing list
> > Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> > To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> > http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
> >
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
>
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
Subject: Re: Cats and Dogs
From: David Clark <meathead.clark5 AT gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2014 22:36:04 +1000
Good points Greg

I think the evidence indicates that eradicating dingoes has a negative
effect on biodiversity (as does eradicating top predators in other
ecosystems).

I saw a program on TV a while back where a sheep producer introduced
Maremma sheep dogs and virtually eliminated dingo predation on his sheep.
The dingoes continued to take cats, foxes, rabbits and marsupials with an
overall improvement in the biodiversity and productivity of the property.

Cheers

David


On Sat, Jul 12, 2014 at 4:06 PM, Greg and Val Clancy 
wrote:

> Before anyone cries out that this is not a bird issue I would remind you
> that the control of 'wild dogs' in particular Dingoes can potentially have
> a very adverse effect on birds by allowing foxes and cats to proliferate.
> Dingoes pose little threat to birds and many studies have shown that
> Dingoes can have a controlling influence over the numbers of foxes and cats
> in many areas.  I know that there is some DPI research in NSW which claims
> that this is not true and that the top order predator is man and not
> Dingoes but the evidence is there.  The problem with 'wild dog' control is
> that it is difficult to distinguish between feral dogs and Dingoes in the
> wild and poisoning and trapping methods do not allow for this.  They are
> grouped under the legislation so forcing landowners to control wild dogs is
> also forcing landowners to control Dingoes, which is likely to be
> counterproductive.  Rather than a blanket killing of wild dogs authorities
> should be concentrating on feral dogs and not Dingoes.  Research has also
> shown that killing the adult female of a Dingo pack, which has a
> matriarchal system, can lead to 'juvenile delinquent' young Dingoes, that
> lack the experience to hunt native prey, attacking stock.   Other measures
> need to be taken such as using Marema dogs, Alpacas or other animals to
> guard flocks of sheep.  It would be interesting to know how much has been
> spent on baits, bullets and traps, as well as on personnel, in an attempt
> to control wild dogs over the years.  I would guess that the cost has been
> very high and for what result?  The wild dog problem is still with us.
>  Maybe we need to think laterally.  Maybe a range of measures including
> compensating graziers for stock losses and taking measures to reduce the
> number of attacks on livestock with guard animals might just be more
> efficient, and economical in the long run.  But this idea won't win votes.
>
> Regards
> Greg
>
> Dr Greg. P. Clancy
> Ecologist and Birding-wildlife Guide
> | PO Box 63 Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
> | 02 6649 3153  | 0429 601 960
> http://www.gregclancyecologistguide.com
> http://gregswildliferamblings.blogspot.com.au/
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message----- From: Alan Gillanders
> Sent: Saturday, July 12, 2014 1:32 PM
> To: Birding_Aus
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] Cats and Dogs
>
>
> Well no actually, just dogs again, http://www.abc.net.au/news/
> 2014-07-12/fines-flagged-for-not-eradicating-wild-dogs/5590996
> Regards,
> Alan
>
> Alan's Wildlife Tours
> 2 Mather Road
> Yungaburra 4884
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Birding-Aus mailing list
> Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
> To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
> http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org
>
_______________________________________________
Birding-Aus mailing list
Birding-Aus AT birding-aus.org
To change settings or unsubscribe visit:
http://birding-aus.org/mailman/listinfo/birding-aus_birding-aus.org