Central West NSW Trip Report

To: Birding-aus <>
Subject: Central West NSW Trip Report
From: Michael Todd <>
Date: Sat, 23 Jun 2001 17:47:35 +1000
Hello all,

I've just returned from a short trip out to the Central West of NSW. I had a job interview out at Griffith on Tuesday, so I decided to combine it with a quick visit to Round Hill NR, north of Lake Cargelligo. As the list can sometimes become clogged up with enormously detailed trip reports especially of places that most people know of I'll just detail a few of the highlights. I recommend that those interested in how to get to Round Hill etc check out the Birding-Aus archives- there's quite a bit of info on Round Hill.

I had a few quick searches for Tree Sparrows and Greenfinches as I passed through towns between Bathurst and Griffith. In particular, I spent an hour or two with Chris Dwyer of Orange, thanks Chris. Unfortunately we didn't have much luck with either species. However, I am reliably informed that Greenfinches are in Orange, Tree Sparrows possibly aren't. I came across Greenfinches in Bathurst directly outside the Bathurst Gaol. I risked arrest and interrogation by the gaol staff to observe them through binoculars. Honest, I wasn't the getaway car! At all other towns I stopped at were House Sparrows, no Tree Sparrows. That's not to say that the Tree Sparrows aren't there- just that I didn't see them during my quick informal searches.

Adjacent to Weddin Mts NP. Hooded Robins, Speckled Warblers, Brown Treecreepers, Striped Honeyeaters and Emu. The Speckled Warblers were wonderfully vocal.

10 km S. West Wyalong. Shy Heathwrens were calling well and quite easy to see.

A small flock of ~10 Diamond Firetail.

Hooded Robin

They had a day or two of rain last week and there was a lot of water lying about with quite a few puddles on the tracks that would worry a 2wd car. I camped two nights which were very cold. Shy Heathwrens and Southern Scrub-robins both located without too much trouble. Both species were calling well during the first hour after dawn. I spent most time along the "wheat paddock" road. There seems to be some confusion with regards to this area. The true "wheat paddock" is about 15 km in from the Lake Cargelligo road. Its now starting to grow over with shrubs and is adjacent to an area of relatively tall woodland. Old farming equipment remains in the area. Mind you this area didn't seem to be as productive bird-wise as within a couple of km of the Lake Cargelligo road. Honeyeaters were sparse with the only flowering being occasional eucalypts. Grey-fronteds and White-eareds the most common near the LC road. The only Yellow-plumeds that I found were about 7 km in from the LC road. I saw single White-fronteds at two spots. I was disappointed not to see or hear any Chestnut Quail-thrush.
One pair of Pink Cockatoos at the Whoey Tank site.
There were no Chats at the Chat "swamp" that is often referred to in Round Hill reports.

Between Forbes and Orange. I spent a chilly and wet half hour before dark sitting underneath some huge River Red Gums watching a male Glossy Black-cockatoo feeding a begging a female. As there were numerous large hollows in the trees thereabouts I was thinking that the female would be about to fly to a nest hollow. Unfortunately I had no such reward! Just as it went dark both birds flew off over the road and out of sight. It may have been little more than courtship behaviour.

I had intended taking a look at a few spots that were recommended to me by Carol Proberts, thanks Carol. Unfortunately I passed over the mountains at midday on the way out and on the way back with time limited so I wasn't able to do them justice. I spent a pleasant few minutes watching and photographing Bassian Thrushes pulling earthworms out of lawn at Mt Wilson. A dark phase Little Eagle flew overhead while I was at the Waterfall Reserve at Mt Wilson. Is this unusual for the area Carol?

I took a quick squizz at where the Turquoise Parrots have been of late by Edwin Vella and others. Alas, my luck was out.

Other points of note. No Superb Parrots or Mulga Parrots. Numerous Bluebonnets between Griffith, Mt Hope and Forbes, excepting the Round Hill and Nombinnie Nature Reserves themselves. Anyone wondering when to visit Round Hill in- I'd recommend leaving it for a while until there is more flowering, especially if honeyeaters are a target.


Mick Todd

Michael Todd
Toronto, NSW, Australia

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