Bruny Island (Tassie) news

Subject: Bruny Island (Tassie) news
From: Dr Tonia Cochran <>
Date: Tue, 25 Nov 1997 18:20:26
Hi there everyone,

        Firstly, I would like to thank Tony Pallise and Alexandra Appleman for
their helpful tips in response to my query about accommodation in Sydney. I
have only joined birding-aus recently and have been watching quietly from
the sidelines. Very impressed with the way the info flows around the
country (and most other parts of the world!). Thanks everyone for a newsy
info service about what's on in the birding world.

        Some of you may be interested in what's going on in the deep dark south,
so thought I'd give you a quick rundown on the current birding events here
on 'Inala', my 600 acre property on Bruny Island, Tasmania.

        It's been a great season for birds here this year. The pair of Grey
goshawks (white phase) are regularly patrolling the grassy flats for
newly-hatched Tasmanian native hen chicks, and I see at least one of the
pair every day. Swamp (Marsh) harriers are also making the most of the
'bumper' native hen season. The Forty-spotted pardalotes are currently
feeding chicks (they started breeding early this year) in the Eucalyptus
viminalis here-there's an estimated 70 birds in the colony. Black-headed
honeyeaters are often found in association with them and can also be seen
in the canopies of the trees.

        I've also noticed larger than usual numbers of Beautiful firetail 
this year (single birds to groups of up to ten individuals), and they are
calling regularly and performing courtship displays (the old piece of grass
stem in the bill trick-works every time!) The Swift parrots have again
returned to nest in the old-growth Eucalyptus obliqua forest. The first of
them arrived on the property on schedule on the 15th September-they never
vary by more than a few days every year- and make regular feeding trips to
the Bluegum forests (Eucalyptus globulus) nearby, which are currently in
full flower. A pair of Tasmanian scrubwrens and Superb blue wrens also
nested in the undergrowth just outside my back door this year and one has
to tread warily to avoid stepping on the baby scrubwrens in particular.

        The Satin Flycatchers arrived here recently, and I've had good views of
both the male and female (best located by their calls). Other birds calling
regularly at the moment are the cuckoos (Shining bronze, Pallid and
Fantail), whistlers (Golden, Olive as well as Grey Shrike thrushes), robins
(Flame, Scarlet and Dusky), honeyeaters (Yellow-throated, New Holland and
Crescents and Yellow wattlebirds).

So all in all a good season.

        If anyone is interested in 'news bulletins' from down this way, please 
me know and I can send some info either privately or through birding-aus.

        Happy birding everyone, and all the best,  Tonia.

Dr Tonia Cochran
Cloudy Bay Road
Bruny Island, Tasmania 7150
Tel/Fax: 03 62931217 mobile: 0416 124 934 (message bank)

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