Trip Report from Stawell and Warburton

Subject: Trip Report from Stawell and Warburton
From: "Nicholas Talbot" <>
Date: Wed, 19 Nov 2003 21:40:37 +1100
Here?s my report from my trip around Victoria last weekend. Once again it
was a self-inflicted 48-hour driving marathon going from Melbourne to
Stawell and then down to Warburton before returning to the airport. Thanks
very much to the people who responded to my request for Pilotbird and Red
Browed Treecreeper locations around Healesville.
This trip was another extension of a conference trip. I got away from
Melbourne early enough in the afternoon to get up to Stawell in time for a
decent bird watch in the Illawarra State Forest looking for the elusive
Painted Honeyeater again. It stayed hot til about 8pm, keeping the bird
numbers down but I still saw 19 species but dipped on the Painted Honeyeater
again. The highlights were Purple-crowned and Musk Lorikeets, Crested
Shrike-tit, Dusky Woodswallow and White-winged Chough (including one on a
The next morning I went to the Ironbark State Forest before dawn. I got 32
species and found the bushland was much more extensive and diverse than I
had realised during my previous brief visit. The highlights were
Mistletoebird (including a pair building a nest right where I parked the
car), Yellow-tufted Honeyeater, Fuscous Honeyeater, Collared Sparrowhawk,
Common Bronzewing, Striated Thornbill and Brown-headed Honeyeater.
I then headed back to the Illawarra State Forest, this time covering the
western end and then the section across the highway. And with my total of
hours searching for Painted Honeyeater reaching nine, I still couldn?t tick
it. During all that time I only saw two mistletoe plants with ripe fruit on
them and very few with flowers. I did add 11 birds to my list from the same
forest the day before with the highlights including Pacific Heron,
White-bellied Cuckoo Shrike, Restless Flycatcher, Red-rumped Parrot and
Brown Treecreeper.
With the temperature in the high 30s I set off for the mountains, which I
thought would be cooler but I was dead wrong. After receiving several
suggested locations for Pilotbird and Red-browed Treecreeper I settled on
the Upper Yarra Reservoir near Warburton. I did the full walk from Doctor
Creek twice and most of the way a third time with the first one in
absolutely stifling heat and the second on Sunday morning in really cold
drizzle and wind. The walk is pretty steep so I think I earned my prize of
hearing Pilotbird twice very close (although not seeing it) and my only new
bird of the trip, the Red-browed Treecreeper. The birding in this area was
good despite the awful weather. I got 24 species and heard many more. The
highlights were Bassian Ground-thrush, Lyrebird, Satin Bowerbird, Satin
Flycatcher, Eastern Whipbird, Olive Backed Oriole, Gang Gang Cockatoo,
Rufous Whistler, Sacred Kingfisher and Eastern Yellow Robin. I also got
Flame Robin and Bassian Ground-thrush at the Rainforest Gallery on Mount
Donna Buano (I think that?s how you spell it). I also ran into some feral
deer in the scrub.

Hot chart ringtones and polyphonics. Go to

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