Effect of Vic. rains

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Effect of Vic. rains
From: "Bob & Sadhana Cook" <>
Date: Thu, 2 Nov 2000 20:23:35 +1100
We here in Central Vic., about 35kms south of Bendigo, have been having our wettest Spring for many years - 250 mm or 10 inches in the last two months.  That's half our annual average.  Apart from having full tanks, blooming garden and green everywhere, we have had our medium sized farm dam spreading and overflowing for the first time in 6 years.  This has created a small marshy "wetland" and a larger than usual dam surface area.
After more than two months of these conditions, results include:
  • two successive breeding efforts by the local Masked Lapwing group, first successful, second effort still sitting.
  • two sets of Grey Teal breeding pairs, total of 13 ducklings
  • 8 Latham's Snipe flushed today - first sighting in 5 years
  • First sightings on our dam of White-necked Heron, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Australasian Shoveller and Hardhead.
At one time recently on the dam and the adjacent 20 metres, we had:
Grey Teal
Black Duck
Wood Duck
Aust. Shoveller
Aust. Grebe
White-faced Heron
Great Cormorant
Black-fronted Dotterel
Masked Lapwing
Welcome Swallow
Magpie Lark
Little Raven
Also, we have just returned from our first visit to Gluepot.  What a treasure this place is!!  We were full of admiration for the volunteer work being done and amazed and thankful for the saving of this place from what might have been its fate if BA had not stepped in.  We were only there for a bit over 48 hours, but recorded 76 species, including the Black-eared Miner, Gilbert's and Red-lored Whistler, Southern Scrub-robin, Black-eared Cuckoo, Purple-gaped Honeyeater and Major Mitchell's Cockatoo.  Weather was great and camping in the "remote", pristine Mallee scrub was bliss.
We only really covered a bit over half of the accessible area and even then too quickly, so we will be back.
PS:  I think Russell's recent note has set the Birding-aus rules and guidelines just right!!!
Bob & Sadhana Cook
Elphinstone (105 kms NW Melbourne)
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