The following are some scratchings about some selected birds seen on a
weekend birding trip. I keep a year list of birds seen in the state of South
Australia every year. In addition to being great fun, it pushes me out to
see birds again. After a few times, I find that I am able to "know" the
birds. This will be the fifth year I've done it, and since this year's total
is the highest I've achieved, I have been trying to add to it. I've been in
the state about 4 months total in 4 trips. Birding is mostly done on
Although there was a total of 15.5 hours of birding on Saturday, I was tired
and only birded 12.5 hours Sunday since I had a 3.5 hour drive home
South East South Australia Trip Report - 12 -13 December 1998
Left motel in Bordertown at 5:15 AM. Arrived at Red-tailed Black Cockatoo
site south of Bangham C P at 5:45. Left at 7:15 with no RTBC.
Birded Bangham C P for about 4 hours. Got good looks at a totally unexpected
Chestnut-rumped Hylacola in the SE corner of the park, but missed
Black-chinned Honeyeater for the umpteenth time.
Saw Magpie Geese at Bool Lagoon, but no egrets were seen at all.
Nothing exciting at Mary Seymour C P.
Only a Grey Currawong at Rennick, no Pied. There are some nice patches of
native trees in the pine forests. One had a lot of bird activity.
Spent two hours or more at Piccaninnie Ponds with no Olive Whistler, but did
see a Striated Calamanthus, not a year bird.
7:45 to 9:15 at Cape Northumberland. Saw two Short-tailed Shearwaters for
two seconds each, both landed on the side of the island away from shore.
5:45 AM Sunday. Left motel at Port MacDonnell.
6:05 to 9:05 again at Piccaninnie Ponds. Again no Olive Whistler.
9:15 to 10:15 at Penambol Conservation Park southeast of Mount Gambier.
While driving on a dirt road that required my attention, briefly got a
almost glimpse of a currawong that seemed to have a complete white tailband.
Didn't see rump. Spent 30 minutes or more looking for it again.
11:30 Millicent. Nothing unusual.
12:00 - 13:45 Beachport C P. Was sitting at water hole when I heard a bird
start calling that had to be an Olive Whistler. Crept up to it a step at a
time, while it continued calling for 10 minutes. I was no more than 15 feet
away, and I could not see it. It stopped calling. I went back to the water
hole. 25 minutes later it started calling again, across the road. I could
tell where it was but again could not see it. In desperation I started
pishing. Nothing. It kept calling.
Then I started doing a horrible imitation of its call. It popped out to look
at me for a minute, and gave a very good look. Got rejuvenated and decided
to try for Red-tailed Black Cockatoo again.
14:15 15:15 Reedy Creek C P. Had two White-bellied Cuckoo Shrikes fly around
about 3 or 4 times. I never got the binoculars on them, but they were
smaller than Black-faced, had very white bellies, and flew high in trees,
seemingly running from me, although I was not close enough to bother them I
thought. Tried for better looks unsuccessfully.
16:00 - 17:00 Penola C P. Nothing unusual. Contains a nicely manicured trail
through a well kept park that probably no one ever visits. Claims to have
snipe in summer, but it had no water that I saw.
17:45 -18:00 South of Bangham C P. Was out of the car scanning for
Red-tailed Black Cockatoos when at 17:57 I saw a bird flying near the dam
that looked like one. It flew down into the dam and three then flew out to
the north. I saw two small red patches on the tail of one, and didn't
actually notice any red on the others although I only saw them for seconds.
I had seen enough Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos at Penola that I was aware
that the yellow really shows up. Decided not to try to go in and bother the
birds to try to see them better.
18:05 - 18:30 Bangham C P and roads near Bangham. Gave a few half hearted
attempts to hear something like Black-chinned Honeyeaters but heard nothing.
18:30 - 21:40 Drove home to Gawler. It rained near Bordertown and was very
foggy crossing the hills.
Weekend total was about 97 species with the real goal being the desired 6
year birds. Still no Black-chinned Honeyeater.
Year total - South Australia 279. If I had gone on a pelagic trip and gotten
12 or so more, I'd stay here until I got 300, but now it's futile.
Adelaide, South Australia