Mon, 02 Jun 97 11:59:21 +1000
Hi, this is the first message I have sent to Birding-aus, though I
have been part of the group for a while.
Just a short introduction to myself. My name is Patrick(Pat) Wyllie
and I have been interested and enthralled by birds ever since I was a
kid. I lost a little interest during my schooling years, but I became
more serious about birding about five years ago when a small
red-headed bird seen on Russel Island, Moreton Bay renewed my
curiosity. I had the Reader's Digest Book of Australian Birds back in
Canberra and looked it up when I returned home. I had seen my first
Scarlet Honeyeater and I was hooked.
Living in Canberra there are lots of good places for birds around. My
favourite are Mulligan's Flat and Campbell Park.
Two things prompted me to post to the group.
The first was in response to Trevor Questeds' posting about Regent
Honeyeaters and Swift Parrots. I went to the Capertee Valley on
Saturday 31 May and met Trevor and Annie along with Tom Tarrent.
Trevor was kind enough to point me to the location of the Regent
Honeyeaters. I counted at least a dozen birds on the short stretch of
road we walked. They were feeding in flowering White Box. The Swift
Parrots weren't present while I was there.
The second is a quite unexpected sighting. I spent a couple of hours
on Sunday 1 June at Munghorn Gap. The highlight there was seeing a
male lyrebird. It was on the way back to Mudgee that I had my real
highlight. About 13km east of Mudgee on the Munghorn Gap road I saw
seven Cuckoo-shrikes sitting on a gate of the property "Willanda". I
stopped to look at them thinking they were White-bellied
Cuckoo-shrikes. I was very surprised when I realised that I was
looking at seven Ground Cuckoo-shrikes. I didn't expect them this far
east. When I pulled up they flew from the gate and alighted on the
ground nearby. Unfortunately at this stage a pair of magpies chased
the cuckoo-shrikes off. The most striking features of the birds was
the contrast with their dark wings and pale body, and their call which
was a high pitched two notes. The birds forked tail wasn't as
noticeable in flight as it was on the ground.
Pat Wyllie (Canberra, Australia)
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