Saturday, 26 November 2011

Grey-crowned Babbler

This is a video of the Grey-crowned Babbler, with Crested Pigeon and Rainbow Lorikeet that can be found in our yard as well. The Babbler is an interesting and entertaining bird to watch with its'antics.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Grey-crowned Babbler

Now that the weather is warming up, and the Noisy Miner seem to have moved on, the Grey-crowned Babbler have come back to our yard and have been very active in the garden. It looks like all the trouble we went to mulching the garden is paying off, as the Babblers look for food and gather material for their play nest which they are building in a tree across the road. We have counted at least 8 birds in this group so far at one time.
Click on photos to enlarge.

Grey-crowned Babbler (Pomatostomus temporalis)

It is possible that this is a young one, as I saw it being fed by another bird.

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Wader Count

During our last Wader Count in September we counted 13 species with a total of 248 birds.
We were hoping the numbers would be a lot bigger than what they were as the waders tend to come back in early September, but not this year.We have had reports that the waders are now back, so the count this month should be interesting.

Eastern Curlew (Numenius madagascariensis)

It was interesting to see this Jellyfish at the wader roost site, as they don't often enter the estuary, staying more out in the bay.

Blue Blubber Jellyfish (Castostylus mosaicus)

The photos below show the other side of the Wader Roost Site that we can only access on a very low high tide or by kayak on a very high tide. This particular day the high tide was low enough for us to walk across and check out the birds that were hiding on that side of the roost. Not long ago a fire in the area burnt down to the edge of the site. Better to have it burnt before the Waders returned than when they first come back I guess.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Patchwork of Birds of Patchwork Cottage

One of the little towns in the Mary Valley is called Imbil, and here we stayed at a B&B called Patchwork Cottage to undertake the next survey of birds in the area. We managed to get 61 species over 2 days.

Patchwork Cottage backs on to Forestry, and the birds seen provided a Patchwork of Colours against the green of the surrounding forest.

Just how many shades of green are in the bird world I would not like to even guess at, with the Green of the Catbird, King Parrot and Emerald Dove as well as the Satin Bowerbird female.

There was the Black and Gold of the Regent Bowerbird male, Pink and Grey of the Galah, Black and White of the White-headed Pigeon.

Brown of the Brown Cuckoo-Dove and Tawny Grassbird.

Black crown, Chestnut throat, White breast and Cinnamon buff underparts of the Eastern Spinebill, and all the colours of the Rainbow Bee-eater.

Green Catbird (Ailuroedus crassirostris)

Australian King Parrot (Female) (Alisterus scapularis)

Satin Bowerbird (Female) (Ptilonorhynchus violaceus)

This is not a very good picture, but I have included it to see if any one has noticed any barring on a female Satin Bowerbird before.

Tawny Grassbird (Megalurus timoriensis)

Yabba Creek

Just a short walk down the road from Patchwork Cottage you come to Yabba Creek.

Black-striped Wallaby (Macropus dorsalas) Scrub Wallaby

Some of the locals.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Mary Valley

Australasian Grebe can be found throughout the Mary Valley on farm dams. Not all dams have easy access to them, this one was right beside the road with enough room to pull over and have a good look at what was on there. Mainly Australasian Grebe and not much else.

Australasian Grebe (Tachybaptus novaehollandiae)

Duwirri (Brooloo Bluff)

Every time we go to the Mary Valley I would say I must stop and take a photo of Brooloo Bluff but we always had to be somewhere at a set time. This time though I just had to take some photos. The last time we were up this way it was raining.

Monday, 1 August 2011

Birds of Brooloo Park

We are conducting a series of regular bird surveys through the Mary Valley with the aim of establishing a bird trail. The first place we visited was Brooloo Park Eco Retreat & Equine Resort. On this first visit we recorded 65 species over the 2 days we were there. A pretty good count considering it's Winter. (click on photos to enlarge)

Jacky Winter (Microeca fascinans)

We don't get to see too many Jacky Winter around our area anymore, so we were very happy to see at least 2 pair on the property.

Forgot to get the name of the horse, but the 2 spoonbills caught my eye as it was unusual to have one of each species together. They flew in together, were feeding together, and flew off together.

Royal Spoonbill (Platalea regia) (Front)
Yellow-billed Spoonbill (Platalea flavipes) (Rear)

Azure Kingfisher (Alcedo azurea)

The Azure Kingfisher is one of the hardest to get a photo of, because most of the time all you see is a bird flying really fast along a creek. At one of the camping spots on the property where we were having lunch, we noticed this one just sitting on a branch in the deep shade by Coonoongibber Creek. You would think with the colours in this bird it would be easy to see, but as I walked down to the creek to take photos, I was surprised to find it sitting just on the other side.

Brooloo Park

Coonoongibber Creek

Monday, 25 July 2011

Pale-headed Rosella

It was a very foggy start to the morning when I was told "quick there is a Pale-headed Rosella on the wires leading to our next door neighbors house". Lucky for me it flew into our Mango tree near the backdoor where the fog was not so thick, and not looking into the sun as it came up.

Pale-headed Rosella (Platycercus adscitus)

If I duck my head down they might not see me

Looks like it did not work, I'll just have to leave.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Wader Count Time Again

July Winter Wader Count time again. Count numbers were well down even for this time of the year. Where are the usual overwintering birds hiding? 8 species for the total of 36 birds. In May we had 15 species with a total of 369 birds. July 2010 10 species 137 birds. May 2010 10 species 133 birds.

Mullen's Wader Roost July 2011

Red-capped Plover (Charadrius ruficapillus)

Gull-billed Tern (Gelochelidon nilotica)

As we entered the wader flats, this Mistletoebird sat still long enough for a couple of photos.

Mistletoebird (Dicaeum hirundinaceum) (Male)


The remains of an aboriginal midden made up of discarded mollusc shells.

The water has now cleared after all the rain, though a bit cold while standing in it counting the birds.

Friday, 8 July 2011

Looking for Birds

At long last we have managed to go birdwatching. The weather was perfect for a change with a clear blue sky and not a drop of rain to be seen.

Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio)

These Purple Swamphen were among a flock of 40 we saw on a wetland area during a trip down the Mary Valley. Cannot remember seeing such a big flock of Swamphen's before.

Variegated Fairy-wren (Malurus lamberti)
(Spot the Bird)

At our lunch spot we went for a walk along a forest track. We came across a large group of Fairy-wren's which kept us company as we walked along. There were Variegated and Red-backed, mostly female with the odd male.

Thanks Mick for the great day out and we look forward to your next post on the day.

Monday, 2 May 2011

Early Morning Wader Count

A beautiful morning for our latest wader count, unlike last month when the count was cut short by heavy rain.

All eyes on the flock of waders that were disturbed by a Whistling Kite.

A surprise for us was a pair of Black-fronted Dotterel (Charadrius melanops), first time recorded at Mullen's

Rufous Whistler (male) (Pachycephala rufiventris)

Samphire throwing early morning shadow on the flats.

Mangroves at Mullen's.

Though most of the waders have migrated at this time of year we still managed to get 15 species with a total of 369 birds. Very noticeable were 14 Intermediate Egret looking all white against the green background of the mangroves. Also of note was a Swamp Harrier and the local Whistling Kite which frequently disturbed the waders while we were there.