Just got back from a great few hours at
Apart from a brief visit last spring I haven't
been since I arrived in Australia a few months ago.
The first pleasant surprise was intercepting a
flock of about 30 lorikeets not far down the South Road. They were almost
all Littles but careful searching revealed 2 or three of both Musk and to
my satisfaction, Purple-crowned. This is a species I have never really
looked for but assumed that I would stumble across by just being out
birding around Melbourne.
Other highlights on the lagoons included enormous
numbers of Pink-eared Ducks and a stooping young Peregrine that missed three
Chestnut Teal through sheer juvenile incompetence - either that
or wishful thinking!
I haven't been down since the hide has been built
on the shore front. What a great location. The only disappointment being that I
wasn't at the site for the near-to-full tide as I imagine that this could
be quite exciting. There were thousands of Red-necked Stints, a few Knots,
White-winged Black Terns etc. A rather distant and alarmingly pale and
frosty plover occupied my attention for a while. I was having thoughts of
Kentish Plover but was concerned about size mainly. It turns out that this bird
may be a regular returning pale Double-banded Plover. I had a quick chat with
Mike Carter who provided me with this useful information and when it moved
closer sure enough the Double-banded hypothesis was confirmed. Probably worthy
of a mental note for visitors to the site as it stands out as by far the palest
plover on the shoreline.
Now I have finally got my permit sorted out I will
be planning to go again this winter. Another rather more localised parrot
species is also missing from my 'list'. No prizes guessing which one that may
Simon Mustoe - Principal
AES Applied Ecology Solutions Pty Ltd.