From: "Vella, Edwin" <>
Date: Tue, 6 Oct 1998 08:07:17 +1000

Yesterday, a pleasant day was spent birding in the Hawkesbury area which is
north-east of Windsor and only 50 km west of the city of Sydney. Like Tony
Palliser, who was with me for part of the time, we were keen in the search
for new Spring arrivals.

At Mitchell Park at Cattai, one of the resident Black Bitterns was seen
flying upstream of Cattai Creek then perched on a log beside the creek. The
tide was low and it would have been obtaining its breakfast before the tide
rose. The presence of Cicadabirds, Dollarbirds, Leaden Flycatchers,
Olive-backed Orioles, Fan-tailed Cuckoos, Common Koels, White-throated
Warblers and Rufous Whistlers truly made Spring felt. Scarlet Honeyeaters
were every where feeding on the abundant flowering Melaleucas. These
beautiful Honeyeaters are usually quite abundant in Sydney at this time of
year and their beautiful melodical calls create a beautiful Spring
atmosphere. Quite interesting was the arrival of a new Bell Miner colony in
the area beside the creek. The first time I have seen these honeyeaters at
Mitchell Park. 

At Maraylya a Pacific Baza (Crested Hawk) has a new nest (spotted by Tony as
I pointed to the tree where they had been feeding the last time I saw them)
and one of the adults was sitting on it. It was presumably just incubating,
as a few weeks ago I watched the pair attending their older nest only a few
metres away from the new nest. We watched a male Ciacadabird calling here
and a a pair of White-throated Gerygones making final touches to their domed

At Scheyille National Park, a Brush Cuckoo made itself well present with its
loud piercing calls and I watched a male Satin Flycatcher singing and
shinning its beautiful metallic bluish-black plumage in the sun. The very
similar Leaden Flycatchers were also present here. Many Sacred Kingfishers
were about, and some Speckled Warblers seen but no Black-eared Cuckoos which
have turned up here in the last 2 to 3 years.

Edwin Vella 

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