Yesterday I fulfilled a wish to take a trip to the centre of
NSW. There are actually two advertsied centres depending on which map/brochure
you look at. One is Mt Tilga which is a small hill about 8 km north of
Condobolin. The other is a locality which is 38 km north west of Tottenham which
has been determined as the true centre of NSW by geographic digitising. As well
as visiting these sites I was interested to see what birds were around - though
because I was driving the birding was a little rushed.
I began at Condobolin and drove to Mt Tilga. A quick walk
to the top gave excellent views of the surrounding plains. Here on the hill
was a Grey Shrikethrush. Driving north from here there were several Red Capped
Robins, two Splendid Fairywren, Yellow Throated Miners, a Jacky Winter
and several Grey Crowned Babblers. Apostlebirds, Bluebonnets and
Little Ravens were a common feature along most of the trip.
About 50 kms north of Mt Tilga the road becomes unsealed and
there is a right turn towards Nyngan and the Geographic Centre of NSW. At
various points along the roadside I picked up Pied Butcherbirds,
Cockatiels, Eastern Rosellas, Red Rumped Parrots, Yellow and Yellow Rumped
Thornbills and White Plumed Honeyeaters. After about 60 kms I reached the
Geographic Centre of NSW to be greeted by a rock cairn, a picnic table covered
by a shelter and two mating Apostlebirds. Other birds in the surrounding area
included Emus, Mallee Ringnecks, Noisy Miners, Cockatiels, Red Rump Parrots, a
Pied Butcherbird and a Blue Faced Honeyeater.
From here I drove to Tottenham with more of the above birds
sighted. I also heard a Spotted Bowerbird on the outskirts of Tottenham. From
Tottenham I crossed the Bogan River and followed it to Dandaloo. This added
Peaceful Doves to my list of sightings. The final stretch took me from Dandaloo
to Narromine where a Little Eagle flew across the road. About 20 kms out from
Narromine a group of 5 Superb Parrots flew into a roadside tree. In
Narromine itself Galahs were harrassing a Whistling Kite. From here it was a
return drive to Orange to complete an excellent day.