Trip report from Melbourne to Gluepot

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Subject: Trip report from Melbourne to Gluepot
From: "Alex Farias" <>
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 2002 20:20:57 +1100
Last week Paul Hacket and I went for a 4 day trip to Gluepot. On the way up we stopped at Hattay NP, where it did not take us long to find several Mallee Emu-wrens. The secret is to go a little further in to the grass then stand there waiting for the almost not notable high pitched song, a single "zit" every 2 or 3 minutes. We had pretty good views of the Mallee emu-wren which is one of the most impressive birds I ever saw, I'm pretty sure it is my favorite bird (all the Emu-wrens).
Arriving in Glue pot our first bird was a couple of Blue Bonnets followed by 2 Mulga Parrots, Chestnut Quail Thrush, inland Thornbill, White-fronted HE, Yellow-plumed HE, chestnut-rumped thornbill, Crested-bellbird, Superb and Variegated Fairy-wren, Ringneck, Black-eared Myna (hybrid), Bee-eater, White-browed and Chestnut-crowned Bubblers, Red-caped and hoodeds, Jacky, Weebill, Pardalotes (both) and others, plus after a search we were able to find the Striated Grasswren, not really good views but good enough to tell what it was. In the next day the highlights were 2 Southern Scrub Robins (one almost stepped on my toe). Both birds had rings on both legs, the rings were white purple and blue, (I'm wondering what the purple and blue stand for, maybe female and male). We also were able to see a Fuscous and a Brown headed HE, Southern White Faces and others.
Another highlight was on the way back to Waikere when we spotted right in the middle of the road, just a few meters away from us, a Spotted Nightjar. It stayed still for a few minutes then flew to the bushes revealing its white band in the wings. If that isn't enough we also saw a Frogmouth in a tree on the side of the road. The next day we went back along the same road (just before the second Gate outside Gluepot Reserve) and we saw not one but 2 Spotted Nightjars. It is the first time that I saw this bird.
We also found what I believe to be a White-browed Treecreeper, however I can't be sure. Paul did take a few photos of the bird and I can send it to anyone that will be able to help us with the id, if you reckon you can identify it please let me know.
Back in Victoria, just after Mildurra following the train line in Murray Sunset National Park, Paul Hacket Spotted a Kingfisher, that turned out to be a Red Backed Kingfisher. Just crossing the Highway I was able to find 2 White Backed-Swallow flying low enough to see details of it face. We stopped again in Hattay NP in the same place but this time there weren't any Emu-wrens around ( I guess we just didn't have the time to find it) but it didn't take to long to find several Striated Grasswrens (with good views this time) and also my first Victorian Variegated Fairywren. Hattay NP is a great place for birders, especially during the weekdays. Gluepot is a excellent place to visit, the Ranger told us the most of the birds have disappeared since  the rains arrived in NSW, still with the "lack" of local birds (we weren't able to find any apostle birds or gray currawong for example) we saw more than 84 birds in Gluepot and Waikere.
Looking forward to next week where I am trying for a Ground parrot in Barren Grounds (I have 4 failed attempts there) and other rainforest birds in Wollongong. If any birder from Wollongong can help me with some target birds (especially the Brush Turkey) I will be very happy.
Other "interesting" records on the highway.
Ringneck (4) before way before Oyen.
Black Kite total of 23.
Whistling Kites
Brown Falcon (7)
17 Black-tailed Native Han (Wichproof)
5 whiskered Terns in the Murray at Mildurra
3 Caspian Terns also in the Murray
100 + Little Corellas (Wichproof)
3 Wedged-tail eagle
Kind Regards
Alex Farias
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