Bamaga Bird Week

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Bamaga Bird Week
From: "Crispin Marsh" <>
Date: Sun, 30 Jan 2005 14:21:20 +1100
Dear Birders,

I had the pleasure of attending Bamaga Bird Week, at the tip of Cape York, from the 5th to the 12th January 2005. This trip was organised by Klaus Unlenhut and he was ably assisted in running the trip by Lloyd Nielsen and Susie Anderson.

17 birders flew in to meet Klaus and his colleagues at Bamaga airport and be transported to Bamaga Resort, a comfortable motel with the luxury of air-conditioned rooms and, as we were all pleased to find, excellent food.

Mornings started with breakfast at 5:30 for a 6:00 am start, returning at around 11:30 for lunch at 12:00.Morning trips ranged quite widely including trips to Lockerbie Scrub for rainforest birds, a trip to Cowal Creek and the Jardine River for woodland birds, a trip to the tip of Cape York for waders and a trip to the Woody Islands for a number of specialties found there. Afternoons typically involved a siesta until 3:30 or 4:00 and birding until 6:00. Afternoon trips were typically in the reasonably close surrounds of Bamaga and sought a range of birds from surrounding habitats. An evening spotlighting trip to Lockerbie Scrub produced a number of owls.

Highlights for me were a Pied Heron swooping down to alight on the edge of the pond behind the resort; a Red-bellied Pitta emerging from the depths of the vine scrub and virtually bumping into a Noisy Pitta going in the other direction; wonderfull views of a Superb Fruit-dove miracculously spotted by Lloyd in the depths of  bush; the Mangrove Robins brought in by a mournfull downward whistle; regular sightings of the spectacular Palm Cockatoo; the Buff-breasted Paradise-kingfisher and the Yellow-billed Kingfisher; and last but not least brief views of the Northern Scrub Robin and of the Magnificent Riflebird (Oh, but there was so much more - the Yellow-breasted Boatbill, the Lovely Fairy-wren, the Fawn-breasted Bowerbird, the Trumpet Manucade etc.,etc.,).

A great birding outing well lead by experienced guides, a wide variety of environments and lots of birds- what more can one want? I cannot report on this trip without thanking Trevor Waller for selflessly sharing his  scope with others of us less quick in picking up the birds.

The birds I say during the week were (The total list seen by all on the trip is larger than this):-

Orange-footed Scrubfowl
Australian Brush-turkey
Great Frigatebird
Lesser Frigatebird
Little Pied Cormorant
Pacific Black Duck
Pied Heron
Great Egret
Intermediate Egret
Little Egret
Eastern Reef Egret
Striated Heron
Royal Spoonbill
Eastern Curlew
Grey-tailed Tattler
Common Sandpiper
Great Knot
Red-necked Stint
Beach Stone-curlew
Masked Lapwing
Pacific Golden Plover
Lesser Sand Plover
Greater Sand Plover
Silver Gull
Caspian Tern
Crested Tern
Whistling Kite
White-bellied Sea-Eagle
Grey Goshawk (both phases)
Peregrine Falcon
Brown Falcon
Superb Fruit-Dove
Wompoo Fruit-Dove
Pied  Imperial-Pigeon
Brown Cuckoo-Dove
Peaceful Dove
Bar-shouldered Dove
Palm Cockatoo
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
Rainbow Lorikeet
Red-winged Parrot
Pale-headed Rosella
Brush Cuckoo
Chestnut-breasted CuckooShining Bronze-Cuckoo
Little Bronze-Cuckoo
Gould's Bronze-Cuckoo
Pheasant Coucal
Rufous Owl
Barking Owl
Papuan Frogmouth
Marbled Frogmouth
Azure Kingfisher
Laughing Kookaburra
Blue-winged Kookaburra
Forest Kingfisher
Yellow Billed Kingfisher
Buff-breasted Paradise-Kingfisher
Red-bellied Pitta
Noisy Pitta
Lovely Fairy-wren
Red-backed Fairy-wren
Tropical Scrubwren
Fairy Gerygone
Helmeted Friarbird
Tawny-breasted Honeyeater
Yellow-spotted Honeyeater
Graceful Honeyeater
White-throated Honeyeater
White-streaked Honeyeater
Brown Honeyeater
Brown-backed Honeyeater
Dusky Honeyeater
Red-headed Honeyeater
Grey-crowned Babbler
Mangrove Robin
Yellow-legged Flycatcher
Lemon-bellied Flycatcher
Northern Scrub-robin
White-faced RobinLittle Shrike-thrush
Mangrove Golden Whistler
Grey Whistler
Rufous Whistler
Leaden Flycatcher
Shining Flycatcher
Yellow-breasted Boatbill
Spectacled Monarch
Frilled Monarch
Spangled Drongo
Yellow Oriole
Magnificent Riflebird
Trumpet Manucode
Great Bowerbird
Fawn-breasted Bowerbird
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike
Varied Triller
White-breasted Woodswallow
Black Butcherbird
Black-backed Butcherbird
Torresian Crow
Golden-headed Cisticola
Red-browed Firetail
Nutmeg Mannikin
Chestnut-breasted Mannikin
Yellow-bellied Sunbird
Pale White-eye
Metallic Starling.
Peter Marsh

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