Friday, 26 January 2018

A stroll in Queanbeyan

Having a few minutes to spare in Queanbeyan yesterday I went for a birding walk around the loop around the Weir.

What I thought was the usual flock of Pacific Black Ducks (PBDs - green ticks below)  were mucking around in QE2 Park.  However on looking more closely about half  (yellow lines in the image below) of them were "something else".
They were definitely hybrids of some sort but I'm not sure what.   They didn't have the curly tail feathers of  Mallard hybrids so my guess is that Muscovy Duck is involved, but I don't know if they can hybridise with PBDs.  Whatever: I think it would be good if they soon got cosy with some Orange Sauce.

Moving along a bit towards the suspension bridge I came across a flock of Sulphur-crested Cockatoos dining on the ground.  Some of them flew up into a tree where I snapped this one.  I have a long-standing quest to get a photo of one with the crest erect but I have failed again.
 Less pleasantly one of them had a bad case of beak and feather disease.  My estimate is that it was missing about 60% of its body feathers - but could still fly OK.  I don't think they'd eat well, but it would seem good to prevent spread of the disease if someone shot this poor bird (although i don't think it will last long in winter).

A small flock of Little Corellas flew over and earned themselves a tick as bird of the day.

I don't often seen larger reptiles along this track so a modest sized (perhaps 30cm nose to rail) Water Dragon was a pleasant bonus.
 Getting backto QE2 Park some of the Crepe Myrtles were well well in flower.

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