"Andrew Patrick" <>
Sat, 4 Jul 1998 17:10:49 +1000
Today, July 4, at Bicentennial Park, Homebush I sighted 40+ White-naped
Honeyeaters and 20+ Yellow-faced Honeyeaters.
I first saw four White-naped on June 8 - this was the first record for the
park. Sheila Witt saw 10 birds three days later and since then their numbers
have built up. The Yellow-faced were seen in April but only as they past
through heading north but now they're back. And the White-plumed Honeyeaters
which are present in the general area all year round have also built up
their numbers in the park.
Why? Flowering tea-trees, that's why. The rains from April onwards have
stimulated the trees to flower and many other sorts of trees in the park
have new growth on them too. There is a large planting of the tea-trees at
the back of Lake Belvedere, within ear-shot of the Olympic construction and
this is where most of the birds are seen although some can be seen near the
admin building. It just goes to show that planting native trees (even on an
old tip site) will pay dividends eventually.
The feeding strategies were interesting to watch. The Yellow-faced spread
themselves amongst the trees, so there was one bird here, two over there,
constantly flitting about. The White-naped on the other hand travelled from
tree to tree as a flock. One tree would be shaking with all the birds
investigating the flowers and looking for insects under the bark. Then they
would gently migrate to the tree next door. Then at a signal they would all
fly off 10 metres or so to another tree. I was so close at times that the
binoculars were useless. It was quite a sight.
Incidentally there were 8 Bar-tailed Godwits at Rodd Point in Iron Cove
today, down from 13 there at the beginning of June, and 50+ Little Black
Cormorants, until a dog chased them away.
Cumberland Bird Observers' Club
(02) 8338 8888
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