One of the newer pursuits we’ve been involved with is the Werribee Wagtails group’s Bird Surveys at a number of sites. One of those is Mt Rothwell Bio-Diversity Centre.
This area is set aside, privately funded, as a nature reserve. Details can be found in the website here.
Astute readers will recall a blog back in December 2013, when said blogger became separated from the counting group and was “lost” for over an hour or more. Now depending on who tells, the story, I was not “lost”, nor “Misplaced.”, simply a long long long way behind the leader. Nuf said.
This time, under pain of something dreadful, and probably unpleasant, I was allowed to join, but had to ensure that:
A. I did not have a camera. And
B. Would stay on the Tracks, no wandering off.
So, as the Banjo says, We went.
Pleasing day, great company and plenty of birds to see.
We stopped for lunch at the worksite kitchen area and one of the local inhabitants, an Eastern Quoll came out to see what has going on in “his patch”. These delightful little creatures once roamed the grasslands of Victoria and were so plentiful that the government placed a bounty on them at one time. Sadly there is only a handful of them left, and by 1970 or so they were considered ‘extinct’ in Victoria.
This one and its mate amused us over the lunch break by their antics and their almost complete lack of fear. Wandering around under the tables and through the forest of feet. One even accepted some offered food, but in the end just spat it out. No accounting for taste.
We then took an afternoon walk to the top of the hill and watched enthralled as Little Eagles, Whistling Kites, Spotted Harriers and Brown Falcons entertained us as they swept over the plains below.
It was also possible to see down into an old movie set of “Glenrowan” used for the Mick Jagger movie, “Ned Kelly”. The old set is in pretty bad repair, infact no repair at all. It probably speaks more to the skills of the set builders than most else. So it was interesting to wander among the buildings and see what they had recreated of the past.
Then it was time to travel home. And as we proceeded along, it was obvious that the boys had their really big toys out, and were resurfacing the road. “Expect Delays”. Ok, that can’t be too bad, but after all we were the only car on this road, and they were really big toys taking up lots of space, it was going to be a longer than Expected Delay. A kind bloke with a “STOP” sign in his hand wandered over and said, “Its going to be at least 15 minutes, mate. Do you know the way on the backroad over there.” Pointing his sign at the small road off to the right.
“Yes”, said I. Not because I knew the road, nor its destination, but rather because it was a new place to explore, and figured that any road not marked, “No Through Road” must go somewhere. So, as the Banjo says, We went.
First we turned right, then left, then right and right again then left, a bit of a bend to the left, and then right, and right again. After travelling for about 3 kms, we were about 500 meters straight line from where we started!. Great road. Then we came over a rise, and there was a great big dip in the road, and a sign post marked for the depth of the water. 9 Metres it topped at. Wow. Note to self. Remind me not to come this way in the wet.
And just when we thought it couldn’t get any better two Brown Falcons exploded from the side of the road and sat in a nearby tree. Super.
All in all a great road, and well worth re-exploring methinks.
2 thoughts on “Counting Birds at Mt Rothwell”
Love the series of shots of the Quolls. Good you managed to smuggle a camera in with you after all!
Hi Eleanor, I did, just didn’t carry it about ‘conspicuously’ until after lunch.