Yesterday was a fantastic warm, clear, sunny day in southern Victoria,
with a gentle sea breeze to keep the temperature about perfect (about
24-25 C). I spent a few hours birding at a favourite wet forest &
coastal woodland site inland from Kennett River, west of Lorne, in the
Otway Ranges of SW Victoria. The Grey River road heads inland off the
Great Ocean Road, into the western part of the Angahook-Lorne Forest
Park. On the way down, a Rufous Bristlebird ambled across the road,
giving a geat view, just near Cinema Point (between Airey's Inlet and
Lorne) - a good omen.
Heading out from Kennett River, you come to Picnic Area Number 1 and
Picnic Area Number 2, before reaching the main picnic area at the Grey
River itself. Don't be put off by the unimaginitive facility naming, the
birding is good.
At PA#1, an old logging tramway, now minus the tracks, heads west around
the hill. The habitats include relatively open woodland of Blue Gum (Euc.
globulus), and wet forest of Blue Gum, Mountain Grey Gum (Euc.
cypellocarpa) and Messmate (Euc. obliqua). This is a good birding spot,
and the highlights yesterday were good views of Rufous/Golden/Olive
Whistlers, Rufous/Grey Fantails, Rose/Flame Robins, Bassian Thrush,
Gang-gang Cockatoo, Crescent Honeyeater. Also of interest were:
Short-beaked Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), Koala (Phascolarctos
cinereus), Red-necked Wallaby (Macopus rufogriseus), and very healthy
looking Common Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus) and White-lipped Snake
(Drysdalia coronoides), as well as Victorian Froglet (Geocrinia
victoriana) and Brown Tree Frog (Litoria ewingii).
At Grey River itself, the habitat is a mixed wet forest of Mountain Ash
(Euc. regnans), Manna Gum (Euc. viminalis), Messmate, Mountain Grey Gum
and Blackwood (Acacia melanoxylon). The highlights here included a fully
resplendant male Satin Bowerbird, a pair of Azure Kingfishers, Australian
King-Parrots, Forest Raven, Varied Sittella & Mistletoebird (hard to see
in tall trees!), a young Grey Currawong in a nest over the picnic area,
and most of the birds seen at PA#1.
Yellow-faced HE, White-naped HE, Brown Thornbill, Grey Shrike-thrush,
Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Eastern Spinebill, New Holland HE, White-throated
Treecreeper, Red Wattlebird, Little Wattlebird, White-browed Scrubwren,
Spotted Pardalote, Superb Fairy-wren, Crimson Rosella, Silvereye,
Brown-headed HE, Eastern Yellow Robin, Common Blackbird, Striated
Thornbill, Pied Currawong, Red-browed Finch, Striated Pardalote, Laughing
Add Grey River to your Otways itinerary next time you're down that way
(SW Victoria, between Geelong and Port Campbell; major towns include
Lorne & Apollo Bay).
Geelong, Victoria, Australia