Hattah Kulkyne trip - Baillon's Crake

To: "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Hattah Kulkyne trip - Baillon's Crake
From: "Bob&Sadhana" <>
Date: Mon, 8 Oct 2001 21:08:07 +1000
Just back from 4 days spent in Hattah Kulkyne NP (NW Victoria).  Springtime is wonderful in this area, although weather provided some wind and showers.  Many trees in flower and many, many wildflowers out.  82 species in total, 41 species in 500m atlas around Lake Hattah.
Failed on 2 key species, Mallee Emu-Wren and Striated Grasswren despite several hours in several likely locations.  Had fun trying to follow Michael Hunter's directions - tried 9.6 km from a couple of locations at least twice each.  Believe his spot is close to Thomas & Thomas "beesite 8" location where we also searched but missed out.  Ticked Shy Hylacola, immediately opposite entrance to H-K NP road on the Hattah-Robinvale road.
Other interesting observations:
Hundreds (at least 300, probably more than 500) Black-tailed Native Hen around Lake Hattah (KFC would be stocked for weeks!!!)
Many, many (perhaps 200 - 300 in total) Woodswallows at a number of locations around the Park - Dusky, Masked and White-Browed
Yellow-plumed HE all over the place - few other HE's - Striped, Spiny-cheeked, Blue-faced, Red Wattlebird and White-plumed
Peregrine Falcon over the Murray River at the Eastern edge of the Park
Splendid, Variegated and Superb Fairy-wrens - all in full colour
Many sightings of Regent Parrots in groups from 2 to 10.  Beautiful, elegant bird!
Several sightings of Mulga Parrots and Mallee Ringnecks
Great-crested Grebe and Pink-eared Ducks on Lake Hattah
Apostlebirds and WW Choughs both tame (hand-feeding) in Lake Hattah campground. Choughs with 3 chicks in nest above our heads.
Few Raptors - 1 Sea Eagle over Lake Hattah, Whistling Kites only over Murray River, single Peregrine F, no Black Kites, no WT Eagles, only one Kestrel sighting and 2 BS Kite sightings
A few days earlier, we checked out a small park on the main Adelaide - Sydney Highway in the town of Buronga (just over the Murray from Mildura).  This park has a small, reed-covered & fringed lake.  Spotted a single Baillon's Crake which obliged by wandering in and out of the sunlight for a good 10 minutes only 15 metres from where we sat.  B-doubles rumbling past the whole time!!.
Bob & Sadhana Cook
NW Victoria
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