Just back from a far too brief visit to Gundabooka NP (National Park),
Currawinya NP, Wanaring, Bourke, Tibooburra, Sturt NP and the Macquarie
Marshes, north-west NSW, with Cindy Ryan and Ian and Jeanie Hackworthy.
Country around Bourke was lush with waving green grasses, yellow flowering
cassia and eramophila just coming into flower ( in full flower in
Currawinya) and carpets of flowers on the woodland floor. Out past
Wanaring it became dried up but because of the height of the dry plants, it
was very difficult to see such birds as Gibberchats (4 just north of
Tibooburra) although Aust.Pratincoles were easy enough, sitting in the
middle of the dirt roads and swooping off at the last minute.
Interesting sightings were 6 Flock Pigeons, 4 Aust. Spotted Crakes, 50+
Native Black-tailed Hens, 15 Pink-eared Ducks and a Great Crested Grebe
(carrying a large fish (for it) to a small patch of reeds - to feed the
female on the eggs?) at South Myers Tank (29.16'43 - 141.59'19), between
5.45 pm aand 7 pm, just north of Tibbooburra, and an immature and an adult
Black-breasted Buzzard just east of the Bulloo Overflow on Wed 20th Sept.
(another Black-breasted Buzzard at the south end of Currawinya NP from the
pub in Hungerford - at breakfast time - no alcohol!).
10 Little Eagles and 1 Black Falcon were sighted together at 28.58'3 -
142.15'29 - on the way to Wompah Gate, north of Tibooburra.
A road-kill Spotted Nightjar was found on the road leaving Tibooburra 22.9.00.
There was not much variety in honeyeater species. Only Little Friarbirds,
White-plumed, Singing, Spiny-cheeked and Striped Honeyeaters and
White-rumped Miners were seen frequently, possibly due to the almost total
lack of flowering eucalypts. A few Noisy Friarbirds and Blue-faced were
seen in the Bourke/Macquarie Marshes areas and a smal flock of Brown-headed
at Gundabooka NP.
At least 6 Magpie Geese were near Monkeygar Creek in the Macquarie Marshes
22 and 23 Sept.
Superb Parrots were seen at Warren and in Gundabook NP.
Regarding the comments earlier in the year about low numbers of Emus, we
kept a record and saw large numbers between Tibooburra and Bourke, and even
more driving south from Bourke to the Macquarie Marshes - 60 plus being
the greatest number at one time approx. 190 km north of Nyngan, and 67
between Coolibah and Willie Retreat on Friday 22 September, not counting
babies of various ages.
Atlas sheets will be submitted eventually.
Penny Drake-Brockman, Examination Recitals Co-ordinator, Sydney
Conservatorium of Music.
Tel: 02 9351 1254.
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