Strzeleki trip report

Subject: Strzeleki trip report
From: <>
Date: Sun, 3 Aug 2008 18:05:46 +1000
Just back from a quick trip up the Strzeleki Track. First stop from Melbourne 
was a 
detour 60km into Murray Sunset NP to look for Red-lored Whistler. I found one 
after a 
couple of hours searching, but I was lucky to see this bird, as he did not 
call. Next 
morning off to north Adelaide for Slender-billed Thornbill. Lots of rain on the 
Slender-bills present at Pt Gawler Rd & Middle Beach Rd in windy conditions. 
at Pt Wakefield, & more heavy rain in the morning to Pt Augusta, easing off as 
approached Hawker. I began to wonder if the roads in the Flinders Ranges would 
be open, 
but fortunately little rain fell here. A brisk 8' at Stokes Hill Lookout. It 
take long to get good views of a Short-tailed Grasswren as it made it's way 
down the 
hill. There were at least two other birds calling. Lunch at Brachina Gorge, 
with nice 
views of a Redthroat. On to Mt Lyndhurst Station for the night. I checked the 
"2 gate" 
site on the way, but saw nothing here. The shearers quarters at Mt Lyndhurst 
are basic 
but good value, & handy for the "wrecked car" site. Even brisker 4' next 
morning as I 
searched for Chestnut-breasted Whiteface. At least 8 pairs of Thick-billed 
here, Chirruping Wedgebills, White-winged & Variegated Fairy-wrens, Rufous 
Fieldwrens & 
a pair of Cinnamon Quail-thrush. After 4.5 hrs I finally picked up a pair of 
A brief, good look, then they were off & not seen again. On the way to 
bore I checked most of the dry creeks for Letterwing Kite - no luck though, the 
birds of interest were 3 Mulga Parrots. There were a few White-backed Swallows 
the way, & 1 Inland Dotterel about 30km east of the bore. I arrived at 
just before dusk. As I was setting up camp I heard wren-like calls coming from 
a nearby 
bush. I was amazed to see a pair of Eyrean Grasswrens run across less than 15 
away. I followed them for about 50mtrs, with great views as they ran between 
the sand 
hummocks. Unbelievable. Next morning (1') I had a very brief glimpse of a EGW 
before I 
continued on up the Track to a spot where there were a lot of dead trees (S28 
E140 07.626). 3 Red-browed Pardalotes here, & a few Southern Whiteface, but no 
Letterwings. About 20km further on (S28 49.638 E140 07.583) I saw 1 Banded 
Whiteface - 
that's all 3 species of Whiteface seen on the Track. I think Orange Chats maybe 
breeding here, as a female I flushed did a 'broken wing" routine. Cinnamon 
seen here also.  Not much seen the rest of the way to Innaminka. Very few 
anywhere on the Track. Pied Honeyeaters were common around Innaminka. After 
camping at 
the Dig Tree, I continued east ( a balmy 4' this morning). There were 2 Bourkes 
about 130km from Innaminka. Budgerigars & Cinnamon Quail-thrush here too. I 
arrived at 
the Coopers Creek Crossing Grasswren site around mid-morning, & began searching 
lignum. Many good birds here, including more raptors seen anywhere on the trip 
- Back & 
Whistling Kites, Little & Wedge-teiled Eagle, Brown Goshawk &  pair of Spotted 
Harriers. After 4 hours of searching I heard Grasswrens. My patience was 
rewarded with 
fantastic views of a group of at least 4 Grey Grasswrens for many minutes. They 
completely ignored me as they playfully hopped & jumped & ran as they foraged. 
wonderful end to a great trip. 
My thanks to all who have posted information on these sites.
                                              Brian Johnston

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