Baillon's Crakes - Bendigo

Subject: Baillon's Crakes - Bendigo
Date: Mon, 17 Sep 2001 10:01:39 +1100

G'day folks,

Many of you would be aware, through my postings on this list, that I have been
regularly monitoring birds (nearly every day!) at the Bendigo Sewage Farm over
the past few months.  One particular swamp has been, and continues to be, a
great spot for observing Crakes/Rails.  A Lewin's Rail was present throughout
much of July and there were good numbers of Buff-banded Rail, Australian Spotted
Crake and a Spotless Crake.  It was with great delight that last Thursday
evening (13/9), I saw my first Baillon's Crake for the season.  The following
morning, I saw 8 Baillon's and 1 Australian Spotted.  I reckon it is useful
information to know exactly when these birds turn-up.  The water level in the
swamp is very high at the moment making observation a little more difficult
because the birds can easily blend in with the vegetation.  Occasionally though,
they come out to forage on areas of exposed mud and excellent views can be
obtained.  It is a fantastic birding spot!

Also, I have been keeping an eye on the return of waders to the Woodvale
Evaporation Ponds.  Last Friday morning, I saw my first Whiskered Terns for the
Bendigo district - 6 birds flying low over the settling ponds.  There were also
4 Curlew Sandpiper, and numerous Sharpies, Red-necked Stints, Red-capped Plover,
Red-kneed Dotterel, Black-fronted Plover, Red-necked Avocet and Black-winged

Bye for now and happy birding.

Chris Tzaros

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