Boxing Day in Cairns 2002

To: <>
Subject: Boxing Day in Cairns 2002
From: "Keith & Lindsay Fisher" <>
Date: Thu, 26 Dec 2002 18:24:20 +1000
Hi again,
As usually happens once you see a species for the first time in a while you
then keep seeing it all the time! Whilst out walking this morning (26th) we
flushed a Black Bittern 20m from our house beside the road, then we saw
another along Stoney Creek, less than a km from home to add to the one
yesterday. The 2nd one was found in the opposite direction to which the 1st
bird flew. Stoney Creek is in the rainforest and interestingly we also
flushed a Pacific Black Duck, White-faced Heron and a Nankeen Night Heron
all trying to be rainforest species.
A quick check of some of the wetlands to the north of Cairns in the
afternoon produced some good birds. 1st stop was the Cattana Wetlands at
Smithfield (16 50 07E 145 41 48S), although the water level was low some
water and a few muddy islands produced 8 Red-kneed Dotterels, a species
uncommon on the coast (2 also turned up on the Cairns Esplanade last week),
3 Pink-eared Ducks (also reported from the Esplanade), 3 Marsh Sandpipers
along with a few ducks and some Black-winged Stilts. 2nd stop was another
lagoon (16 50 03E 145 41 57S) in the same area but one which is a lot
deeper, this had 91 Eurasian Coots on it. Again this is another species
which is not common on the coast here, a few Magpie Geese were around the
edge along with many ducks including another Pink-ear and a Green
Pygmy-goose. 3rd stop was the Northern Treatment Works at Smithfield (16 49
38E 145 42 29S), here were 14 Pink-ears, Black Duck, Grey Teal, Hardheads &
Australasian Grebe in breeding plumage. 4th stop was the wetland at the
Skyrail terminal, Smithfield (16 50 56E 145 41 39S), here the same ducks as
seen at the other wetlands + 4 Cotton Pygmy-goose (2 pairs), another unusual
species on the coast in Cairns. They were with 16 Green Pygmy-goose, Little
Black Cormorant, 1 Great Cormorant and another single Glossy Ibis to go with
the ones we saw yesterday. These wetlands are retaining their water and
attracting some unusual species down to the coast and are worth keeping an
eye on.

Keith & Lindsay

Keith & Lindsay Fisher
Cairns, (16°55' 40"S 145° 46' 35"E)
Far North Queensland 4870 Australia

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