Western Treatment Plant rarities

To: <>
Subject: Western Treatment Plant rarities
From: "Ingwersen, Dean" <>
Date: Thu, 5 Jan 2006 17:11:17 +1100
Hi all,

Geoff Walker, Frank Pierce, Roy ? and myself spent today around WTP trying to 
track down some more of the rarities which have been seen, especially the 
Broad-billed Sandpiper.  I saw the Freckled Ducks on Lake Borrie where they had 
been reported earlier in the week first thing in the morning - a good start 
(also saw several later).  A quick stop at Walsh's Lagoon yielded Red-necked 
Phalarope, then it was on to the conservation lagoons.  Frank and Geoff were 
already there and had found the Long-toed Stints (2) on the eastern lagoon, 
exactly where Chris Lester had described them (thanks Chris, directions were 
spot on).  We also turned up a Wood Sandpiper here.  Nothing exciting on the 
western lagoon.  Headed back towards Walsh's, and on the way found 6 Wood 
Sandpipers in the first lagoon east of the Little River ford on 280S road.  
When we stopped the cars they flushed, and flew down into Little River where 
they perched on some rocks about 50 metres south of the ford - excellent views! 
A quick stop at Walsh's Lagoon saw the Phalarope still foraging.

Had lunch up at the mouth of Little River, where further searching yielded a 
Red Knot and a Common Tern, and a Red-necked Phalarope loafing on a spit just 
out from the mouth of the river!  A quick trip back to Walsh's Lagoon and the 
first Phalarope was gone - we suspect it was the same bird, and this spot might 
be worthy of a check if it's not seen elsewhere.

Checked Summer 2 lagoon off Austin Rd for Broad-billed Sandpiper (as well as 
extensive searching of all the previous sites mentioned), but alas it was the 
'dip of the day!'.  Finally, we decided to follow up on reports of Lathams 
Snipe and Pratincole at Ryan's Swamp.  Quickly flushed a Snipe, and a lap of 
the swamp yielded 2, possibly 3, more.  The swamp also contained at least 500 
sharpies, and an Oriental Pratincole which was flying with them.  We flushed it 
3 or 4 times on our lap, and it eventually flew off with a flock of sharpies in 
the direction of Walsh's Lagoon.  No sign of the Australian Pratincole seen 
earlier in the week.  A nice wrap up was watching a hunting Peregrine Falcon 
having a crack at a few birds over the swamp.

Cheers, Dean
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