Australia part II

Subject: Australia part II
Date: Sun, 15 Oct 2006 00:22:57 -0400
Hi all,

Here is part II of a trip made by me and girlfriend (and still ongoing until 1 
december). Main aim was to see my missing Australian species. My last mail 
dated from 17 september.

18 September

Today we took a stroll with towards the Coorong (South of Adelaide near 
Goolwa). The first stop was at Mt Compass and over here I quickly went to the 
boardwalk opposite the school. Here I quickly found my target the Mt Lofty 
subspecies of the Southern Emu-wren. Also here and in the surrounding while 
driving Peregrine, Goldfinch, Silvereye and some Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos. 
At the Coorong and Hindmarsh Island we recorded during the day 100-s of Cape 
Barren Geese, Purple-gaped Honeyeater, Grey Shrike-thrush, Red-capped Plover, 
Whiskered Terns, Red Wattlebirds, Great Crested Grebe, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, 
Red-necked Stint and many more commoner species. A Blue-tongue Lizard was a 
nice reptile to find while here. 

20 September

Today we headed to the south from Adelaide and I had a quick stop at Monarto 
NP. During a short stroll I recorded * Yellow-rumped Pardalote (1) and two * 
Southern Scrub-robins. Other nice birds where several Shy Heathwrens, 
Tawny-crowned Honeyeaters, Hooded Robins, Silvereye and Chestnut-crowned 
Babblers. A stop then in the southern part of the Coorong at Salt Creek 
Crossing produced soon *Rufous Bristlebird (2+) and an unexpected *Beautiful 
Firetail. Other birds here included a nice Spotless Crake, Buff-rumped 
Thornbill, Brown-headed Honeyeater, Splendid Fairy-wren, White-browed Babbler, 
Superb Fairy-wren, Collared Sparrowhawk and Black-fronted Plover. An afternoon 
sea-watch off Robe produced a nice Little Shearwater (1), *Southern Giant 
Petrel (1), Short-tailed Shearwater, Black-browed & Yellow-nosed Albatross, 
Rufous Bristlebird (10+), Australian Gannet, Black-faced Cormorant, Buff-rumped 

21 September

An early morning sea-watch (like yesterday at the lighthouse) produced nearly 
the same like yesterday. I recorded Wandering Albatross (1), Fluttering 
Shearwater, White-bellied Sea-eagle as extra species. And at the several walks 
around the lighthouse Rufous Bristlebird is easy to hear but hard to see. On 
our way to Port Fairy I noticed several *Forest Raven, Crimson Rosella at near 
Mt Gambier large flocks of Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos. At Port Fairy around 
Griffiths Island and a sea-watch produced Fluttering Shearwater, Short-tailed 
Shearwater, Shy Albatross, Black-browed Albatross (both melanophrys and 
impavida), Southern Giant Petrel (3 including a complete white morph), Ruddy 
Turnstone, Pied and Variable Oystercatcher, White-fronted Chat, Red-necked 
Stint, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper and Pacific Gull (2). At the camping in Port 
fairy there was an Australian Hobby, Goldfinch and Horsfield’s Bronze Cuckoo. 

22 September

Again an early morning sea-watch off Griffiths Island produced many Shy 
Albatross (cauta)(50+) and nearly 100+ of both races of Black-browed Albatross, 
Fluttering Shearwater (1), Southern Giant petrel (5), Pacific Gull (2), 
Red-necked Stint, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Chestnut Teal and many more commoner 
species. The next stop was at Towerhill Reserve just west of Warrambool. Here 
we recorded no less then 20+ Koalas, Red-browed Firetail, Golden Whistler and 
Brown Falcon. Several stops along the Great Ocean Route produced at Lorch Arch 
10+ Rufous Bristlebirds, Superb Fairywren, at London Bridge Black-browed 
Albatross, *Striated Heathwren at The Grotto and at the Bay of Islands two Shy 
Albatrosses. During driving we recorded Cattle Egret, Bell Miner, Glossy Ibis 
and Peregrine. 

23 September

At Aireys Inlet around the lighthouse we recorded several Black-browed 
Albatrosses, Rufous Bristlebirds and two Blue-winged Parrots. 
With Albert Vrielink who lives in Melbourne and his girlfriend Anke we saw 
somewhere around their house at Eltham 2 Koala’s and several Red-rumped Parrots 
and Yellow-faced Honeyeaters.  

25 September

Birding in the early hours with Albert at King lake gave a nice male Superb 
Lyrebird, King Parrot, Crested Shrike Tit, Scarlet Robin, Eastern Yellow Robin, 
Grey Fantail, Eastern Spinebill, Spotted Pardalote and Grey Butcherbird away. 
Also stunning was a Short-beaked Echidna. A search around Yellingbo State 
Forest for Helmeted Honeyeater sadly failed (as in 2002 I saw it easily here). 
Despite the miss we recorded a good variety on other birds like Rufous and 
Golden Whistler, White-faced Heron, Eastern Yellow Robin, White-throated 
Treecreeper, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, White-eared Honeyeater, White-plumed 
Honeyeater, White-naped Honeyeater, Grey and Pied Butcherbird and Grey 
Currawong. Stunning was the second Short-beaked Echidna for the day.

26 September

A long day of driving with several Long-billed Corella along the route north of 
Carlton, also some Blue Bonnets here. A stop at the Pink lakes at Murray Sunset 
NP brought us Major Mitchell Cockatoo (1), Black Falcon (1), Blue Bonnet, 
Crested Bellbird and Emu (8).

27 September

As part of a round-trip though Australia, I went out on several days with Peter 
Waanders who lives in Waikerie and runs Southern Birding Services. On 27 
September I did some general birding in the surroundings off Waikerie, by tips 
from Peter and previous experiences. In a surrounding private property we 
located quickly the local Malleefowl at they active mount. The mount has 
changed locations in the past years, as it is the case with other Malleefowl, 
so up to date information is required to see a Malleefowl. Also in the private 
sanctuary we recorded a Barn Owl (scared of it’s possible nest), some 
displaying Varied Sitella’s and several more common species like Rainbow 
Bee-eater, Hooded Robin, Grey Fantail, Weebill, Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, 
Inland Thornbill and White-fronted Honeyeater. Afterwards we headed towards 
Hart’s Lagoon in the outskirts of Waikerie and the Ramco Lagoon. The search for 
the elusive Freckled Duck sadly failed, although they should be around here. 
Also we missed out on Banded Stilt that I recorded on several previous visits. 
But despite that the birding was successful and brought us nice birds like 
Hoary-headed Grebe, White-faced Heron, Purple Gallinule, Caspian Tern, 
Whiskered Tern, both Royal and Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Wood Sandpiper, Swamp 
Harrier, Zebra Finch, Australian Shelduck, Grey Teal, Australian Shoveler, 
Hardhead, Red-necked Avocet, Red-rumped Parrot, Australian Reed-warbler, 
Variegated Fairy-wren, Southern White-face and White-fronted Chat. At dusk we 
went out spotlighting and soon we found our first target unexpected of a nice 
Short-beaked Echidna, a species now high on the whish list of Danitsja. Also at 
the bridge of Blancetown where we saw this nice mammal we recorded loads of 
waterbirds, like Australian pelicans and various cormorants. We also saw here 
Whistling Kites and Black Kites. On a spot nearby we quickly located the severe 
suffered Southern Hairy-nosed Wombats, as the most where wiped out by diseases. 
We recorded in total five wombats, and several had symptoms of the disease 
(mange). Also we recorded few Western Grey Kangaroo’s and Red Kangaroo’s 
(including young one’s). Around Waikerie during the day we recorded Grey 
Shrike-thrush, Collared Sparrowhawk, Crimson Rosella and Spotted Turtle Dove.

28 September

We woke up early and set our car in the direction for Gluepot. As Peter is well 
known we soon located the best birding spots here. As my main target was the 
search for Scarlet-chested Parrot (Not seen for several weeks ore maybe months 
reliable a hard chace) and to see Black-eared Miner. The other specialities at 
Gleupot like Red-lored Whistler, Gilbert’s Whistler and so on I already 
recorded in previous visits. We searched for a long time at several spots, but 
despite our efforts we where not rewarded. Anyway the birds where good and we 
recorded at least 20+ Striated Grasswrens (seems like every suitable patch of 
Spinifex holds some birds), two pure Black-eared Miners and several hybrids, 
Shy Heathwren (1), Southern Scrub Robin (2), Chestnut Quail-Thrush (5) and many 
more common birds like Hooded Robin, Mulga Parrot, Crested Bellbird, 
Horsfield’s Bronze Cuckoo, White-fronted Honeyeater, Mallee Ringneck, 
Chestnut-crowned and White-browed Babbler, Brown Treecreeper, Brown-headed 
Honeyeater, Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Southern Whiteface, Apostlebird and 
Australian Raven. As mammals we recorded Euro, Red Kangaroo and Western Grey 

29 September

In the morning we located around Waikerie a singing male Gilbert's Whistler and 
few Purple-crowned Lorikeets.

30 september

In the early morning the Gilbert's Whistler was singing again. We went up to 
the Flinder's Ranges and within 5 minutes after arrival we already saw few 
Short-tailed Grasswrens flipping thru the spinifex. Many more commoner species 
where encountered like Elegant Parrot, Sacred Kingfisher and so on. Nice 
mammals included 3 Yellow-footed Rock Wallaby and Euro's.

1 Oktober

And early morning search 26 kms north of Lyndhurst produced in 1,5 hours all 
targets including two groups of Chestnut-breasted Whitefaces (10+4), 
Thick-billed Grasswren (4), Cinnamon Quail-thrush (1) and many Rufous 
Heathwrens. During driving we also encountered Pied Honeyeater, Gibberbird (4), 
Chirruping Wedgebill and few more common species. At Montecollina Bore I 
recorded 3 Eyrean Grasswren within 45 minutes, later we even saw one crossing 
the track beyond Merty Merty station. While driving to Tibooburra we came 
across a flock of 22 Inland Dotterels.

2 oktober

In the early morning we where on our way to Adelaide Gate, and soon when we 
entered suitable habitat we found at least two Grey Grasswrens. Also here 
Orange Chat and some other birds. At a waterbore at Tibooburra we found 
Bourke's Parrots, Chrimsons Chats, Red-backed Kingfisher. 

4 oktober

At Adelaide in Black Hill reserve I found Chestnut-rumped Heathwren. At the 
drive back several Regent parrots could be found.

5 oktober

Few Regent parrots and a single Musk Duck at Banrock Station.

6 Oktober

At The arid botanical gardens in Port Augusta few Chirruping Wedgebills. During 
several stops to Coober pedy few Chinnamon Quail Thrushes could be found.

7 Oktober

A early stop around Coober pedy produced a few Chestnut-breasted Whitefaces. On 
the way to Erldunda I found a single Banded Whiteface. North of Erldunda I 
found two Banded Whitefaces.

8 oktober

On the way to Ayers Rock I found Chimming Wedgebill. At Ayers Rock and 
surroundings I recorded Straited Grasswren. At the Olgas a male Black 
Honyeeater was present. 

9 oktober

Visited Standleys Chasm (nothing here) and Simson's Gap. At the last twice a 
Painted Finch. Further several new trip species, that makes te total on 291 
now! A afternoon visit for a couple of hours, at Kunoth Bore produced a Grey 
Honeyeater, Ground Cuckoo Shrike and Slaty-backed and Chestnut-rumped 

10 oktober

A stop at the Ochre Pits produced opposite the vieuwing platform a calling 
Rufous-crowned Emu-wren. Two walks (blue Gum and Pool Walk) at Orminston Gorge 
gave a Dusky Grasswren, no less then 60+ Painted Finches, Black Honeyeater 
(male) and 2 Western Bowerbirds away. At the entrance from the main road to 
Orminston Gorge a female Rufous-crowned Emu-wren was present. A visit later to 
the Pink Botanical gardens gave no les sthen 5 Western Bowerbirds in full vieuw.

11 Oktober

Along the Stuart Highway at several spots Spinfexbirds could be found, as at 
Mary Ann Dam north of Tennant Creek.

12 Oktober

A search around Mataranka gave a nest of Red Goshawks (with 2 almost fledged 
young) and better was a Northern Shrike Tit south of Mataranka. 

13 oktober

Still the Red Goshawk where at their place as on 14 oktober.

14 oktober

At lee Point Road at Darwin a flock of 41 Little Curlews was present, and at 
dusk 2 Chestnut Rails where running around the boatramp at Buffaloo Creek.

Up to now 349 species seen this trip! And logged my 609th Ozie species with 
Chestnut Rail.

All the best,

Justin Jansen

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