Sunday, 10 April 2016

Birding in the inner hinterland

Today I had reason to visit the Cultural Centre (aka Waste Transfer Station) at Bungendore (now known world wide as the Village that Woolworths Rejected).  On the way back I stopped at Trucking Yard Lane to check out the Plumed Whistling Duck situation.

There were 25 Whistlers, 2 Australian Shelduck and numbers of Pacific Black Duck and Grey Teal.
 At one point a bovine, not the innocent-looking one in the image below, parked a load of processed hay in the water. Immediately a bunch of ducks including at least one Plumed Whistling Duck swam over and began dabbling.  While they usually graze, such feeding is not unknown for the PWD.
As the weather is getting cool (3oC at 0630 this morning) it isn't surprising that the Common Starlings have formed into murmurations.

What was a little surprising was that a female Collared Sparrowhawk flew from a perch near the Cockatoos in the upper snap and circled under the murmuration without taking a shot at any members thereof.

Later in the day I and my friend Garry went to look down into Foxlow Lagoon.  This was semi-successful as we could identify
  • a Musk Duck, 
  • a Great Egret, 
  • a couple of Black Swans (as the swans were standing up in the middle of the Lagoon I reckon they were on a mud bank and the water level is getting a bit ordinary); and
  • three species of Cormorant.
We could pick out the size and shape of various other water fowl but the combination of sun glare (both direction and reflection off the water) and water vapour meant we couldn't do anything precisely with identifying numbers x species.  Three Wedge-tailed Eagles flying over the surrounding hills were good to see.

After dropping Garry off I decided to go for a drive down Woolcara Lane.  To my surprise there were no migrating honeyeaters evident here but the highlight was some 7 Diamond Firetails.


Ian Fraser said...

All good, as ever, but at this tense stage of proceedings I don't think you should let a day go by without informing your faithful fans of the New Bird of the Day - at this stage of proceedings they're all going to be interesting!

Flabmeister said...

I should obviously have mentioned that the Collared Sparrowhawk was bird of the Day. The main publicity site for such notifications is the BirdaDay website - scroll down until you find my name. However when I do a post about birding I shall make a point of noting which species is in play for that day.

I'm not sure how exciting the birds will be from now on. It is the nature of the game that the accepted strategy is to keep all the common birds unticked until you have no choice. Thus if you see code 1 appearing in people's lists (and they are on their home turf) you know they are close to finishing. My absolute emergencies tend to be Australian Magpie, Crimson Rosella and Superb Fairy Wren.

Ian Fraser said...

Thanks and good point - I hadn't thought that through carefully enough. I recall you mentioning a forthcoming trip which would make things a bit easier - how long do you have to survive before that kicks off?

Flabmeister said...

If I can get through June I am going to get a good bit further. That is a big "if".