Peaceful Dove, heathwrens at Kuringai NP

To: Birding-Aus aus <>, Bruce Cox <>
Subject: Peaceful Dove, heathwrens at Kuringai NP
From: Ricki Coughlan <>
Date: Sat, 30 Dec 2006 15:59:44 +1100
G'day bird lovers

An interesting morning indeed on the Waratah Track at Kuringai National Park (Sydney).

I haven't walked this trail since the end of August and, as is to be expected, the change in season has totally altered the bird list for this trail. Many regulars are gone and fewer species about overall. However, the abundance was still very good and a couple of excellent sightings made the walk a very worthy one indeed.

I began the walk with my most easterly observation of a Peaceful Dove about 100 metres along the track. There's been at least one other sighting of this species in the park before but it would have to be quite a rarity there. The abundance of Pheasant Coucals was remarkable, with at least 7 birds showing or calling along the way.

Plenty of heath and dry sclerophyll faves (the trail runs through an ecotone) but finished the walk off very nicely with long, crippling views of a couple of Chestnut-rumped Heathwren. I've visited this track 8 times and have only dipped on heathwrens on one occasion. It's got to be the best place for viewing this species that I've yet encountered. My total for today was four of them. My record for this track is seven individuals on one day and I generally only walk about 3kms out and 3 back.

This track is also pretty good for button-quail, Brush Bronzewing and the occasional Bar-shouldered Dove, if you can beat the mountain bikes through (you usually get a couple of them so an early start is required).

Adding plenty of colour and interest were the large numbers of Jewel Beetles which are currently breeding along the track. I can't get an ID to species level, so have to settle for Buprestidae, Jewel Beetle. If anyone has suggestions, I'd appreciate it. I've put images online at

Common butterflies were Blotched Dusky Blue, Spotted Brown and Brown Ringlet.

Here's the list, for what it's worth:

Peaceful Dove
Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo
Fan-tailed Cuckoo
Pheasant Coucal
Laughing Kookaburra
Variegated Fairy-wren
White-browed Scrubwren
Chestnut-rumped Heathwren
Brown Thornbill
Little Wattlebird
Yellow-faced Honeyeater
White-eared Honeyeater
New Holland Honeyeater
White-cheeked Honeyeater
Eastern Spinebill
Eastern Yellow Robin
Eastern Whipbird
Rufous Whistler
Grey Shrike-thrush
Grey Fantail
Pied Currawong
Australian Raven
Welcome Swallow

Ricki Coughlan
Belrose, Sydney

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