Western Sydney

Subject: Western Sydney
From: "Peter Ewin" <>
Date: Mon, 01 Jul 2002 12:30:47 +1000
As I hadn't seen them since 1999 and the weather was so nice in Sydney yesterday headed to the other end of the Cumberland Plain and look for Swift Parots. Stoped first at Shaws Creek on the Springwood Road, and after deciding that motor bike riders also like sunny days, went to the western side of the road amongst the Yellow Bloodwood (you were correct Darryl). Whilst amongst the Bell Miners, saw very briefly the tail end of two parrots, that looked about the right size, but didn't hear the call to be 100% positive. Other lerp feeders present were Yellow-faced and White-naped Honeyeaters. Then went to Terrace Road and briefly listened at the roadside ironbark, though the traffic was heavy and the Miners loud, so no calls were heard. This remnant shows that heavily disturbed (weed smothered) blocks can still be important for threatened species. Finally went down to Pit Town Lagoon to re-aquaint myself with Freckled Ducks. Two were quite close in and as usual it amazed me how distinctive their profiles are. As I was investigating some White-plumed Honeyeaters in the tree plantings, a movement in the corner of my eye attracted me to the western edge of the lagoon. Initially I thought it was a very low Swamp Harrier, but as it landed the distinctive heron profile as it disappeared into the reeds was obvious. Sneaking up as quietly as possible, it flushed again and I had finally tracked down an Australaisan Bittern. Got about 20 seconds of flight before it dropped down into reeds on the other side of the lagoon, which a lack of gum boots prevented from trying to get a view on the ground.
A great day, with the added bonus of a new species.

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