Flinders Rangers Trip Report

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Flinders Rangers Trip Report
From: John Reidy <>
Date: Thu, 07 Jun 2001 14:36:31 +1000
Hi All,
I had the opportunity to tag along with my parents Grev and Margie Reidy
to the Flinders Ranges
and Lyndhurst and have just returned.

The aim of the exercise was to see the Short Tailed Grasswren and
Chestnut Breasted Whiteface
plus for me as many of the SA specialities that are possible in this

We stayed at Willow Springs (about 15 kms North of Wilpena Pound) which
has camping and
various levels of accommodation but without the crowds at Wilpena Pound.
We found the Short
Tailed Grasswrens frustratingly shy but did see them each time we went
to the areas shown on the
map provided by the caretakers. We saw up to 7 on 25/5/01. As the
weather next day changed
from being very windy to very windy and raining we decided to head off
to Lyndhurst where we
stayed at Copley (in the caravan park). Copley consists of a pub,
caravan park, general store and
the Quondong Cafe plus about 200 residents. As the weather at Copley was
relatively fine but still
windy we proceeded to Mt. Lyndhurst about 29 km up the Strzelecki Track,
located the old car
and small cairn on the left of the road. As we pulled up I saw a
Cinnamon Quail Thrush, within 30
minutes we had seen 12+ Chestnut Breasted Whitefaces (excellent views),
and a Thick Billed
Grasswren which ran in front of the whitefaces. The next day (27/5/01)
we again headed to the
whiteface spot, saw the above three species again, with a very good view
of a female Thick Billed
Grasswren and as a bonus, a Rufous Fieldwren. We also flushed an
unidentified Neophema which
headed off into the hills and despite searching we were unable to
relocate. Was it a Blue Winged,
Elegant or Scarlet Chested Parrot? As the weather was still very windy
we decided to return the
following day which proved to be a perfect sunny day. Again we saw the
CQT, CBW, but this time
saw a party of 6+ TBGW. We flushed the Neophema in the same spot but
this time it flew only a
short distance and were able to identify it as an Elegant Parrot
(unfortunately). Other birds of note
here were White Backed Swallows, and Chirruping Wedgebills. One
disturbing sighting was of
a "panther" sized feral cat (tabby) which probably explained the remains
of a Crested Pigeon seen
earlier. Having had frustrating views of Short Tailed Grasswrens we went
back to Willow Springs to
see if we could get better views. We tried the area of spinifex opposite
the airfield near the entrance
to Willow Springs and managed one (only) squeak out of one. We again
tried the same locations
and again poor views. The birds were not calling, and didn't respond
visibly to tape or squeaking.
We got two individual squeaks in response in total. The only way we saw
them was by walking
through the spinifex and flushing them. From other birders reports it
would appear that the breeding
season is the time to see them well.

Other birds of interest on the trip were: Superb Lyrebird beside the
road at Bilpin, Ground
Cuckoo Shrike between Wellington and Dubbo, Red Winged Parrots between
Nyngan and
Cobar, dead Grass Owl (in bits) at Dolo Creek east of Broken Hill,
Banded Lapwings and
Elegant Parrots near the airstrip adjacent and in Willow Springs,
Redthroat near the first rest area
approx. 30 kms west of Broken Springs, Spotted Bowerbird at a rest area
between Wilcannia and

Points re access: Willow Springs - Carmel and Brendan Reynolds - 08 8648
                          Mt. Lyndhurst - Frank - 08 8675 7796. I spoke
to Frank re access. He is aware
that birders frequent the CBWF spot but requests that you ask his
permission to either visit or camp
there. He has to inform professional shooters to avoid that area. He is
sympathetic to birders and in
fact said that he has some shearers' quarters that would be available
for accommodation, with
power to the kitchen and hot water. I have no knowledge of the condition
of this accommodation.

Many thanks go to birders that have published their trip reports to
these areas in the past, in
particular to Tony Russell, Dion Hobcroft (and for the mud map), and
Trevor Quested.

Happy Birding
John Reidy
02 9871 4836

Ps. 5 Ticks for me and 1 each for Grev and Margie.

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