Little Journeys: A Morning at The Plant

Now that Melbourne has emerged from its fifth covid lockdown its time for the Doona Hermit to shed his old worn doona and venture out in to the real, (no definitions please) world.

#kneetoo and I had a little local journey planned, with a stop off along the way to look at a pair of Black-shouldered Kites and their young(?)

But as I pulled back said doona and checked the weather app, it looked like a beaut, clear, cold morning.
We had planned to do our quick visit and then be home by mid-morning for a relaxing morning tea, so I was not planning to load Earl of Grey into the thermos or grab a bikkie or two for the journey.
But.

On a whim, we decided that a morning driving around part of the Werribee Treatment Plant birding area would make the most of the weather, and who knows when if, ever, we’d have such a chance.  Fix snacxks, load cameras, dress warmly and we were on the way.

As it turned out much of the area where we visited was pretty bereft of birds, but what we lacked in quantity we made up for in birds we’d not had the pleasure of seeing for quite awhile

Here’s a small selection.

The dancing fisherman.
The Little Egrets make such delicate moves as they follow the fish through the water
Where did that fish go?
Napping out of the wind. PIed Oystercatcher
A Swamp Harrier on patrol
Crested Tern rolling over for a fishing plunge
Swamp Harrier on a turn
A beaut find, Blue-winged Parrots feeding in the saltbush. We probably saw 15 or more
Blue-winged Parrot. One of the most delightful little parrots we photograph
Pied Oystercacther powering past
One of a number of white chested Brown Falcons we found during the morning/
This one was in no hurry to move and in the end, a Whistling Kite approaching finally put it to air.
When I first came across this bird, it didn’t seem to be in a hurry to leave. At first I thought it was working out the moves for its next meal. Closer inspection shows it must have only recently eaten and was resting for digestion.

Werribee in the evening

The forecast looked good. There should be open sky through to sundown.  I like the evening light on the Treatment Plant as it’s interesting direcitonal light across the ponds.  On a good night with plenty of birds it gives that lovely crispness that we struggle for.

Along The Spit area, the terns were resting on the outgoing tidal flats and in some places, it is possible to get reasonably close.

Image

There is always a Black-shouldered Kite or two to be found and this evening was no exception.  This is one of those images, that has only been cropped.  No clever manipulation, as shot. Love the deep red glowing eye.

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As the sun dropped toward the horizon, it left a soft haze that draped itself over the You Yangs and made a lovely light grey and then an orange curtain against which the birds, although backlit, became intriguing silhouettes.

ImageWTP

All in all a magic evening.