A Southern Boobook welcomed us to the rainforest at
After an hours sleep we awoke to the dawn chorus,
mainly Yellow Robin, Black-faced Monarch and
Fan-tailed Cuckoo. The hill at Allyn River (north of
Gresford in the Hunter Valley) must be one of the best
rainforest sights in NSW. Spectacled Monarch,
Lyrebird, Bassian Thrush, Pitta, Cuckoo-dove, Shining
Bronze, Rose Robin, Rufous Fantail, Catbird,
Yellow-throated Scrubwren, Satin and Regent Bowerbird
and Wompoo Fruit-dove were all seen or heard.
Heading over to Barrington House we addded Brush
Turkey, Bell Miner, Striated Thornbill, Cicadabird,
Yellow-faced Honeyeater, Brush Cuckoo and our last
bird for the rainforest, a Wonga Pigeon on the road.
Channel-billed Cuckoo and Torresian Crow crossed the
road as we headed south. Musk Lorikeet screeched past,
Scarlet Honeyeater and Bar-shouldered Dove called, and
Rainbow Lorikeets fed in the front yards of Clarance
At Seaham we ticked the common waterbirds as well as
Yellow-billed Spoonbill (phew!), Blue-faced Honeyeater
and Little Lorikeet.
White-naped Honeyeater and Variegated Fairy-wren were
heard at Green Wattle Creek and Zebra Finch was
finally added at Bolwarra. Looking suspicious as we
drove the streets of Lorn (suburb of Maitland) paid
off with Goldfinch and Blackbird heard.
Walka Water Works (Maitland's best birding spot and
under a bit of pressure at the moment) had the usual
suspects, Great-crested Grebe, Musk Duck and
Hoary-headed Grebe. White-bellied Sea-eagle and Marsh
Harrier circled over head.
Next stop was Lenaghan's Drive, Minmi (western suburb
of Newcastle). Glossy Ibis, Whiskered Tern,
White-necked Heron and Whistling Kite were scoped from
a far. We welcomed Chestnut-breasted Munia,
Golden-headed Cisticola, Little Grassbird, Latham's
Snipe, and Brown Quail to the list.
Across the road at Pambalong we finally got onto
Red-browed Finch! and Brown Goshawk.
Ash Island was unusually great!! Intermediate Egret,
Bar and Black-tailed Godwit, Marsh, Sharp-tailed and
Curlew Sandpiper, Greenshank, Stint, Red-capped
Plover, Mangrove Gerygone and White-fronted Chat.
After the embarrassing stop at Warrabrook for Mallard
we hit Stockton at its best. Eastern Curlew,
Red-necked Avocet, Red and Great Knot, Pied
Oystercatcher and Gull-billed Tern, and at Fern Bay,
Common and Terek Sandpiper, Tattler and Whimbrel.
Time wasn't on our side so we dashed into Newcastle
(last place you wanna be on a warm spring afternoon)
and saw Wedge-tailed and Fluttering Shearwaters,
Common Tern and after 4 years of trying the Drongos
finally saw a Sooty Oystercatcher!
We stopped for Darter at the Newie Wetlands Reserve
then ducked across the road to the Wetlands Centre
where we cleaned up on Magpie Geese, Wandering
Whistling-duck, White-cheeked Honeyeater,
Scaly-breasted Lorikeet, Nankeen Night Heron and the
last bird for the day, Little Wattlebird.
The teams gathered to count their totals and hear the
results and we were very pleased with our tally of 219
species! Of course we're still well behind the winners
and well done to the Hunter Home Brewers on their
Until next year...........
P.S. Where were the Long-billed Corellas and Tawny
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