Doing bird counts as part of citizen science has been a feature of the Werribee Wagtails group for many years. No longer formally affiliated the members still, however, get together for a monthly outing and also for bird counts every quarter at two locations.
Pinkerton and Mulla Mulla Grasslands (aka Bush’s Paddock) and Eynesbury Grey Box forest were the sites for our recent count.
It is interesting to go back over an area over the seasons and see the changes in habitat as well as the variety of bird life. The early winter walk is always interesting at Mulla Mulla Grasslands as the Flame Robins return there each year. Sometimes the numbers are quite small, this season they are certainly looking very healthy and in good numbers. They feed in the open paddocks of the farmland adjacent to the forest area and use the forest fenceline as a secure base to rest.
In the afternoon, we also count at Eynesbury Grey Box. This trip we found 2 pairs of Jacky Winter. Jacky is quite the citizen of Grey Box, both male and female are midtone greys and subtle brown variations. They can also be quite accomodating, and while everyone else moved along the track I sat for a few minutes with one that was feeding and in the end it came in quite close. I might have stayed all afternoon, but duty pressed us on.
And just as well as we also spotted the jewel in the crown of Eynesbury Grey Box. The Diamond Firetail. The Diamond Firetail is also the signature bird for the area, so always good to locate them.
Time for some shots from the day. The gallery is best viewed by double clicking on an image to go to the larger size.
It has been a little over a month since the first of the Flame Robins began appearing at Point Cook. As usual they come down in a largish travelling party and then slowly disperse into smaller family groups about the park
Often the older females will stay together and the males will move to other parts of the park. We have been working with one smaller group that has 5-6 females, 2 males and several juveniles. The one that appears to be the Matriarch is still trying to persuade the males to move on a bit further down the field.
Now that they have settled in, it makes finding them, and photography a little easier. The Parks people have inadvertently helped by cutting a 10m or so firebreak around the fence lines so the birds are able to successfully hunt in the shorter grasses.
Sadly for photography there is not a lot of suitable perches and the fencelines offer them the best views of the area, if not the best poses for photography. But its been good to catchup with them and we now have more photos of the Robins from this season than for the entire previous two seasons that were constantly cut short by limiting lockdowns
So in no particular order here are some from the last couple of visits.
Sounds like stating the obvious really. The sky is blue, the sun has set. Grass grows. He goes on to say, that as you come to the end of one cycle, a new one will begin. Fulfilling a cycle means completion. Yet new horizons are always there, with each turn of the wheel you go further. With each turn of the wheel comes continuation. Celebrate every turning, And perservere with joy.
As an aside there is a Qigong sequence called, “Turning the Big Wheel”, first to the left then to the right. Some things can be instructive beyond their normal course.
Just as the three young Black-shouldered Kites have reached the end of their training and are moving on to make their own lives, we watched them go, a bit like parents whose children have left home for the first time. And with a feeling of completion of that chapter. My photo library says that over the past three months we’ve made some 26 trips to work with them.
We had spent the morning searching the tree-line and the open paddocks for a glimpe, but they are now independant of the male feeding them, and he has not been around with handouts for nearly a week. He might still flyover but they knew that he was no longer on Uber service.
Finally we spotted one far away across the highway and perched. Then watched as it hunted and successfully carried its prize back to a tree. It was time for us to move on too.
I blogged about this time last year of the arrival of the Flame Robins at Point Cook Park, and we decided to continue on down there and as we hadn’t been in the area for many weeks, wondering what might have changed.
It was very quiet. Last season was a disaster, just like the one before, as covid restrictions for most of the time kept us house-bound for the season(s)
We waked down to see Cassia, of Cinnamon, but she wasn’t too keen on visitors and took off across the paddock avoiding a squadron of agile magpies.
Then, a Red Flash. And Another!
They were indeed back. A quite large family of Flame Robins. Eventually we spotted three males and several females and at least two juvenile males. So they have had a good season. The year before they arrived looking a bit exhausted after their summer season. But this time each of them seemed resplendant in their winter dress and highly active. It is interesting to see them working in the forest, but out in the open fields like Point Cook, they behave a little differently. Having flown over 100km to get here, 500m down the paddock is nothing really, and they are constantly on the move. However like in the forest settings they seem to follow a set pattern, and while it takes a few sessions to learn the cycle, getting ahead of them and waiting is still our preferred method. It is a case of, if we sit they should come.
So as our season with the Kites ends, it looks like a rich season with the Robins might be opening up.
If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough. Attributed to Albert Einstein
Writers rely on keeping a notebook. It gets filled with story or article ideas, and scraps of ideas. Artists keep a notebook filled with small detail sketches, ideas for design and musings. Musicians also have a book in which words for songs, riffs and other musical factoids wait to be turned into the next great composition.
Photographers that I trained with keep, “Day Books”. A detailed set of instructions of how to light a subject, names and addresses, snippets of an idea for the next shoot, calculations of various lens/aperture combos.
I used to have, (somehow lost in all the transitions) the last day book of one of my mentors, (Probably one of the best Black and White printers of his day—Well at least I thought so).
All sorts of goodies were in there, here’s one “Bellows Extension Factors” :-). How much chemical to put in a certain developing solution. Bring home 2 bananas, a loaf of bread and a jar of plum jam, etc. You get the drift.
We also take a photo, move angle, subject, lighting, come back another day, all part of the collecting of visual notes. Sifting through those ideas surely has helped to prepare for the right moment.
A photographer who published 15 years of his day books is Edward Weston. Too expensive to own, and I’ve only ever seen one volume, in a library. Here is a site that shows some of his work. Caution there are some quite explicit images among them. Edward Weston Gallery
These days as a blogger, I keep notes all over the place. Some electronic, clipped from web pages, snapped out of books, handwritten in a note app. Also still use the old standard, Moleskine A5 book, and somewhere a Spirax wire bound student book. And the odd stickit note or two.
Here’s a couple that struck me the past week or so.
Vision: As photographers we are image seekers, and taking that view, life becomes one great romance, an amazing opportunity and journey to see marvellous things all the time.
Expectation: I go out expecting to see greater things, find new opportunities for visuals and experience fortuitous moments. It should bring a freshness and zest to my times behind the camera.
And so it was that #kneetoo and I found ourselves in the sunshine with a family of recently arrived Flame Robins at the Point Cook Coastal Park.
This busy young lady was hunting off the fence line. The birds at Point Cook, as at the Office, use the fence lines as there is little available perching space otherwise. This is open grasslands. Shrubs and bushes are non-existent. And the good people of Parks Vic have kindly mown the grassy verges around the fences providing an ideal hunting area for the robins. Not wonder they love it.
She jumped onto the post, and it struck me to move a little further along the fence and use a distant pine tree as a rich dark backdrop, and then I spotted the highlight of sky between the branches.
Looking for such visual occurrences, is indeed a great romance.
Today is ANZAC Day, 2020. Normally, at least, there would be assemblies of people around the country, honouring the memory of our fallen defense forces.
A dawn service at 6:00am is a tradition that came to the day because of its military heritage. Not unusual for whole families, grandies to grandkids, and great greats, to be gathered together in the quiet of pre-dawn. One day a year. The clink of medals well earned, the comrades in arms catching up a few ‘hellos’ in hushed words. The ringing of Laurence Binyon’s immortal words. “They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old; Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning. We will remember them.”
Then the trumpet call to “Reveille” and “The Last Post”. A minute of Silence.
Next, in most locations a march through the city of those that remain. More greetings, more community gatherings and more shared stories.
Twoup games, and Football.
This year, we found ourselves at the end of the driveway, in the cool of the morning, candles, and lights along the street, people hushed and reverent, and the Last Post rolling down the street from various sound systems.
I like first light. Some might be wary of it, but to me it has always been a comforting, protective time. Enveloped in the darkness, I watch as the first glimmers of light rolls up the day.
A new phase. Deng Ming-Tao, writes, “As we enter a new phase of our lives, the parameters change. We need to revamp ourselves according to our situations. The continuing act of creativity keeps us going.
Learning is the fountain of youth,
No matter how old you are,
You mustn’t stop growing.”
I’d picked this image to follow the one of Mr. Mighty last week. I wonder if you picked why?
It’s a visual thing. The branch this lass is perched on, is the same one Mr. Mighty was made on last week.
I think she might be the matriarch of the travelling party that season. It’s only anecdotal, but it seems to me that a female kept the group focused and moving. A few calls from her and the main group would move on to the next location. The males play little part in it, as they are quiet until its time to return back to the high country and take up summer territories.
The year I took this, (2011), she was looking after a flock of around 15-20. 4 males, 5-6 females and 10 or so young birds, in various stages of moulting into their new dress.
To all my fellow stay-at-homers, I hope all is well, you’re still creative, and still finding new ways of learning and acting.
Tis true to say that EE and I haven’t been down to the Western Treatment Plant for quite a number of weeks. The weather, health things, family events and perhaps a touch of sloth just seems to have gotten in the way.
My photo mate Neil, sent me a note about his last weekend trip, and we decided if the weather opened up a bit, we’d at least drive down 29 Mile Road for a looksee.
So this morning after a couple of Tai Chi class sessions, we loaded up with lunch, a cuppa or two of Earl of Grey and of course the essential cameras and headed out in the warm sunshine, (and to tell all the story, the rather crisp wind as well).
Before we reached Beach Road junction, we spied some Flame Robins, but they wanted to work far out in a paddock, and we could only get glimpses.
Further on down, and a trio of Black-shouldered Kites were keeping the mice on their toes.
And as we sat with lunch at the first corner on the 29 Mile Road, a Spotted Harrier wafted by making some very nervous Swamphens. As we entered the T Section area, we were looking for Brolga as Neil had sighted them here at the weekend, but we lucked out.
Next we found a single Flame Robin female that was working around a puddle of water on the roadway.
Looking up, I heard the familiar call of a Black-shouldered Kite with a mouse, and as we looked a Black Falcon swept in from no where and after a little evasion from the Kite, the Falcon secured the prize and took off with the erstwhile and very angry kite in hot pursuit, but to no avail. The Black is just that good in the air.
As we drove back out, lo, the very Brolga had turned up in the first pond and were busy preening, we shared the last of the Earl of Grey and enjoyed their unconcerned wardrobe adjustments.
So for a first day back at the farm, it was a most enjoyable and profitable time.
For EE and I it was time for our annual pilgrimage across town for an evening with friends.
As we pondered the going, there was a moment’s pause while we contemplated “It will be Thursday Evening before the Easter Holiday break, and by about 4:00pm the roads are going to clog up with holiday traffic and the RIng-road will be at a standstill, moan, moan, complain.”
Ah, says she, with a smile, and always full of bright ideas, why don’t we leave after lunch, take a picnic snack, and go early to visit Woodlands Historic Park and look for Robins, then we’ll only have a short drive to our evening destination.
We did, and arrived at the Werroona Carpark in plenty of time. Then “Dolly” got ready for her maiden trip into the Bandicoot Hilton, also known locally as “The Backpaddock”.
Poor old Grey Box forest is showing the signs of no rain for several months. Not such a big deal to the venerable Grey Box themselves, they are quite adept at surviving in hostile environments. But the understory, and particularly the moss beds that the Robins depend on over winter are simply dry dust.
As we walked down toward the Backpaddock gate, we mused about the lack of birds, and how in past seasons, there would have been Red-capped Robin activity visible from the roadway. At the height of the best seasons several years ago, we had 15-20 pair of Red-capped Robin territories mapped. The pair we named “Lockey and Primrose” were always ready to pop out along the road near the cemetery to watch our progress past. There are quite a few posts on the blog of our interaction with this gracious pair.
When I first started photographing out in the backpaddock, my friend Ray, who taught me so much about the area, and the birds out there, would often stop and chat with me inside the gate. A male Red-capped Robin, would usually come by, sit on a branch nearby and listen to our conversations.
These days not one of those territories exists. In a strange turn of events since the introduction of the Eastern Bandicoot programme in the backpaddock, the number of Red-caps has been decimated. I’m not suggesting a link, just a co-incidence.
We walked the usual (old) kangaroo pads, through the forest, but did not see or hear any robin activity. More walking, and then Dolly took a swerve off the path, and we headed into the forest proper. Dolly is not 4WD, so it was not going to be a long journey. When just in front of me I saw a splash of red on a stump. Heart races, point camera, yes, indeed.
It’s a Flame Robin male.
We were able to work with him for about 20 minutes, hoping all the while that his clan would turn up, but as the light began to fade and our departure for the evening was closing in, it was time to go.
But, we did have a feel that there is life in the old Grey Box forest yet.
After yesterday’s relatively quiet day, we had planned a day at home as those weather prognosticators were falling over themselves combing their various thesauri for even more gigantic, huge, colossal, mammoth, immense, tremendous, immeasurable, Brobdingnagian(Ye of Gulliver’s Travels will understand), humongous, astronomic, ginormous words to describe what was to be a weather of mass destruction, headed our way, so we had decided that it would be a doonah day, and we’d sleep through it all. The patter of rain on the roof and window shutters seemed for once to confirm their cosmic, epic, giant, stupendous, mega predictions.
However as I peeked out from under the protective, shielding, defensive, safety, preventive, insulating, warmth of the doonah, what was it I spied coming in under the window shutters.
Gasp, horror, elation, joy, disbelief. Was that sunshine.
No prizes Sherlock. It was sunshine.
In quick succession t’was breakfast, pack cameras, (I think there should be a get dressed in there somewhere) pack a thermos of Green Tea, (I’m off the Grey of Earl at present), tuck in the Drizabone Jacket, and head to the Office. Also we beat the Mother’s School run, so the roads were fairly, rather, a little, slightly, comparatively, after a fashion, reasonably, kind of, sort of ish, quiet.
But the wind across the carpark sang a different tune. Large gusts, of huge, colossal, mammoth, immense, tremendous…. you get the picture… winds that made even the Drizabone Jacket feel a bit challenged.
Ahh, dear reader. Bet you didn’t expect so soon an update 🙂
Chatting, as I usually do with my current mentor, and it was suggested, that the challenge of writing a full page blog with scintillating patter that is both cogent and helpful may only be causing the blog, well, to blog down. Err bog down.
So welcome to a new addition to the world of blogging at Birds as Poetry. Snapshots
Snapshots will be a quick collection of shots from a given event or location. Not a lot of pretty patter, but rather just the images to do the talking. After all that is what I really do best.
That leaves, Postcards to be a bit more in-depth on either an event, or more likely an encounter with one or two birds.
Then Studiowerkz will carry on doing the in-depth photographic detail from a shoot. Kind of the ‘Day Book’ of photography of yore. Interestingly enough we concluded that a photo might get a boost in Snapshots, the pop up in Postcards, and finally make an appearance in Studiowerks with info on the whole studio-like encounter.
Then there will be those times when verbal virtuosity takes hold of me and the muse connects with the spirit of the universe and the words literally write themselves and I can wax lyrical about happenings of all sorts of birding activity. Expect to see Sea-eagle pics in that one.
Well we’ll see.
So here is Snapshots.
And an important one it is.
EE and I did a trip to “The Office” this afternoon. Had a particular Australasian Darter and a probable nest site as our goal.
But when we arrived in the carpark, the first thing we noted were Flame Robins!
I suppose it was not to be unexpected that after finding some Flame Robins at The Office last week, that we would have to venture further afield.
A rare find of a Rose Robin at Woodlands Historic Park, must have got the inquisitive out and about, as every person we met today asked, “Have you seen the Rose Robin?” Sadly we had to respond “No”. We did manage to get an indication that some Flame Robins had been seen down near the hospital dam, and so like the Banjo suggests, “We went”.
But no luck. Did you remember to pack the bird karma, she asked.
At this time of the year I always expect the Bandicoot Hilton, Backpaddock to be firmly locked from mere mortals, but today it was open and so we ventured in.
It’s a bit humbling to have been able to contribute to a most wonderful publication.
The Hume City Council have published a lovely 20 page Bird Guide to the area. A great creative collaboration by a number of locals and some excellent work by the Evironmental Dept of the Council has resulted in a such a cool little handbook for anyone with even a passing interest in the area.
My Flickr Mate Andew H was among the many of the working group and at one stage asked if I might have some photos of birds they were missing. And off course, I was all too ready for them to use the images.
After living in the area for nigh on 40 years, it was a great way to respond back to the community and to provide a bit of a “thank you” to the birds that have been such a large part of my photographic endevours over the years. My family has walked and laughed and picnicked and even married in the park, so we do have more than just a passing connection.
It’s also no surprise to you long term reader(s), that I have a real affinity for the small birds of the Grey Box forest area in the park. Over the years many of the missives here have been about their lives and their surrounds. So much so that many have become in someways quite familiar. I’ve for a long time taken to giving each of the robins, names. It helps to id them, to come to an understanding of their location and sometimes their interactions. Jon Young, my mentor of the book, “What the Robin Knows”, shows how its possible to build tiny connections to individual creatures that become large ropes that bind the bird and viewer.
Of all the birds I photograph, the small bush birds seem to hold the special place in my heart. I love the boldness of the raptors, the kites, falcons and eagles. I am constantly in awe of the migratory skills of the small waders and shorebirds that visit us each summer, and I can spend hours with the shoreline birds along the beaches, the terns, herons, gulls and cormorants. But, put me in a stretch of Grey Box, and my blood fair purrs. And the small birds fascinate me, not only by their lives, but by the challenge of bringing that portrait moment to life on screen.
Over the years, I ‘ve talked of the lives of Mr. Mighty, (he, who got a front cover on a national magazine), Henny and Penny and their clutches of young. Peter, the Prince, Lockey, and of recent times, Petite, the smallest Red-capped Robin. And of course my very dear friend, Primrose. A female Red-capped Robin that was happy to come and sit with me on a log in the sunshine whenever I was in the area.
Andrew H talked today a little about our experiences and his own involement with the robins, and at one stage likened it to a ‘spiritiual’ moment. And to have a bird such as Primrose so delicately and yet deliberately come in contact, and in some way accept the presence of the big klutz of a photographer, with a turn on the head and a lowered wing flap is something that still keeps us going out to make those connections. How else do you describe a bird that you can see coming through the trees, just to perch less than a metre away and chatter away as if was really important.
And so in the presence of over a hundred or more folk, the Mayor of Hume Council, Cr Helen Patsikatheodorou, talked of the work of the production group, the grandness of the birds in the area and officially launched the booklet for the benefit of all those who love the birds. We also had the chance to do a small walk around Woodlands Homestead and Andrew talked of some of the better birding areas at the park.
If you are in the area, do pick up a copy of the publication. Or contact Hume Council.
I thought I’d re-quoute Jon Young on the Sans Bushman “If one day I see a small bird and recognise it, a thin thread will form between me and that bird. If i just see it but don’t recognise it, there is no thin thread. If I go out tomorrow and see and really recognise that same individual small bird again, the thread will thicken and strengthen just a little. Every time I see and recognise that bird, the thread strengthens just a little. Every time I see and recognise that bird, the thread strengthens. Eventually it will grow into a string and then a cord, and finally a rope. This is what it means to be a Bushman. We make ropes with all aspects of the creation in this way” —What the Robin Knows, p 180—.
So well done Hume, well done team, a supreme effort and hopefully it will help people build more than a thread to so many of the wonderful birds in our area.
I’m just overwhelmed to have been able to have such a small part in the process. Thanks again to all.
In the morning before the launch EE and I had travelled up in the brilliant light and touch of frost on the ground for a short visit to see the birds. The sunshine should have told us it would be a good day, but within about five minutes along the track, Petite, the Smallest Red-capped Robin had popped out on to the roadway, followed by Peter the Prince. Together they fed and played for us before we moved on to the backpaddock. And there we were delighted to remake acquaintance again with a new Male Red-capped Robin, and finally find a small flock of FLmae Robins, including the Three Brothers, working the moss beds in the sunshine.
Seemed a great treat to go with the rest of the day.
Gallery: Click to see full size.
Petite, the Smallest Red-capped Robin. This tiny bird met us on the roadway as we walked in. Totally unconcerned by our presence. A real thread bulding moment.
Peter, the Prince. Its been awhile since I’ve seen him on the fence line.
Such a delight to find. Pink Robin, female. Now if only she would bring her partner down for winter.
Female Scarlet Robin
One of our new discoveries. This female is still supporting one of her last season young
Who is putting ‘footie prints’ all over my forest? Scarlet came by to see what I was up to.
Wedge-tailed Eagle taking its pet Whistling Kites for an early morning flight.
Female Flame Robin
Flame Robin Male
EE Enjoys Denonshire Tea at the launch at Woodlands Historic Homestead.
What a difference to mood a bit of sunshine makes.
We were looking for a day out at the Point Cook Coastal Park with Graham Harkom and the Meetup Bird Photography Group, and as usual Graham managed to put on a picture perfect day.
We arrived in good time to find the park gates still locked, and so we stood around discussing the day’s activities and soon enough the gate was open. Just as well we were a little late starting as a few late-comers thought they’d arrived on time.
Within a few moments of getting out of the car, EE had discovered “Brown” the resident Brown Falcon, and he seemed quite happy to sit in the sunshine. Then, for reasons falcon, he took to the air and patrolled along the treeline by the carpark. Much of course to the chagrin of every magpie in the area. So we started with some good views of Brown in being harassed by first one, then another magpie.
Through the gate and along the track out to the Monument, we also managed some Flame Robins, White-fronted Chats and a particularly good view of several Striated Fieldwrens.
From there we wended out way back along the beach-line and found a small flock of Blue-winged Parrots sunning themselves on the fence-line. And we managed to get some pretty good shots for the photographers. Then one of our more alert spotted a flash of red, and a Flame Robin males spent the next ten minutes entertaining us flying from fence to track to feed. He seemed the least concerned by our presence and again it was a photo opportunity.
Add a couple of Whistling Kites, and several Black Kites that seemed quite taken by our presence and made low passes to get a good look at us. Perhaps they were doing a “People Count” or a “Camera Type Count”. Whichever it was nice to see the sunshine glinting on those rich deep brown wings.
By the time we’d made it to the Homestead area, the tide was well in, several Australasian Gannets were working in the waters further out, EE managed some White-faced Herons, and Pacific Gulls while she had waited for us to turn up.
A large flock, (300+) Little Black and Pied Cormorants were working on a fish shoal out beyond the reef, and every-time the shoal moved a large black mass ascended to the air to catch up with. Very impressive.
A walk back to the car through the farmland revealed some more Flame Robins, several White-browed Scrubwrens and a loud-voiced Singing Honeyeater.
After lunch a few of the group continued round to the RAAF Lake Lookout and spent some time at a pond with circling Welcome Swallows. Where are you Rodger Scott!!
Graham then spotted first one, then a second Little Eagle at work over the Lake, and we were discussing the presence (or lack of) Goshawks, when over the treeline a bullet shape with longish tail appeared and at first I’d picked it for a Goshawk, and we were both amused we’d been discussing the same. Then as the bird drew closer, it pulled up its wings in a most ungoshawk manner and revealed itself as a Peregrine Falcon, and it was most intent on making the Little Eagle’s life just a bit miserable. Several close stoops had the Eagle moving on thank you.
Thanks to Graham for organising the day, and to all the grand folk who turned up to add such a delightful companionship to a glorious sunny day. Really, after the past week or so, the weather just seemed to make the air sing.
Brown Falcon, being seen off by an Australian Magpie
Brown Falcon, being seen off by an Australian Magpie
BirdLife runs a number of Beginners days throughout the year, and Hazel and Alan do a super job of finding the right places to explore and go out of their way to make sure that beginners get the best looks at the various birds found on each day out.
So when the Woodlands Historic Park Beginners day came along we were very happy to go along and catch up with friends and to share just a little of our experiences in the park. It’s also a wonderful opportunity to see the park through a different set of eyes. And some 40 pairs of eyes is always going to see so much more than just my poor old eyesight straining through the bushes.
As the weather has been anything but predictable of late, we were also pleased to see some open blue sky as we drove out toward the park, and as the day went on, the warmth came on well. Our flickr friend, Eleanor turned up and that made the day a little bit special.
The first part of the day featured a walk around the upper ends of the Moonee Ponds Creek, which was actually carrying a flow of water following the recent rains. The creek here suffers from losing input water because of the large reservoir at Greenvale, but none the less it still drains from a long way up toward the north. It also is an especially steep fall from the north side of the park to the more southern areas, so the creek dries out through the park very quickly.
A number of small weirs and dams have been used across the creek over the years, and the Chaffey Brothers, built a substantial weir and bridge near the homestead at one stage. But, on a heavy flood year, the foundations gave way and the weir was never repaired.
At first our outward journey seemed a little slow for birds, but eventually things began to pickup, with a Crested Shriktite being a major find, some thornbills, and Galahs and a pair of Eastern Rosellas which let the photographers gain some excellent portraits. A Brown Falcon took to the air on our approach into the open farmland areas, and the usual Sulphur-crested Cockatoos continued to screech at our presence.
We walked around the homestead and then headed back on a middle track above the river, and some spotted a Scarlet Robin. And after much investigation we were able to get quite close to the female and she gave lovely views for those who might not often have the acquaintance of such a fine looking lady.
Lunch time, and bird count and we had 37 species to our list.
On to the BackPaddock area. Mostly to look for Robins.
A trip around the dam area didn’t do much for the enthusiasm, and I managed to add some Brown-headed Honeyeaters, and more Shriketits. A Whistling Kite and a Wedgetailed Eagle made up for small numbers else where. Despite EE and I looking in some of the places that have been quite profitable of late, the robins were not in a cooperative mood.
The group moved toward the BackPaddock, and I spotted a male Red-capped Robin on the inside of the fence, and the group moved to have a look. Eventually we found him, and his lady, and also a few Flame Robins. The male Red-capped Robin performed so wonderfully close to many of the group and hunted quite close to us on the ground. Nice way to end the day.
Thanks to Alan and Hazel and their helpers for such a good day out, and lovely warm weather to add to the warmth of the company.