Ostrich twitch

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Ostrich twitch
From: <>
Date: Sun, 17 May 2009 13:03:25 +1000
It was disappointing to hear that we are no longer able to visit Mt Arden 
station to see the Ostriches there, & this presented a challenge to add this 
bird to my list. So I came up with a cunning plan. After much searching, I 
found a small plane operator to fly me over the area. Tania Ireton & Ken Baker 
accompanied me, & about 9am on 15th May, we took off from a small private 
airstrip. We began a transect at about 500 feet, a height which did not disturb 
the livestock below us, but we could easily identify the animals below us - 
sheep, goats, red & eastern grey kangaroos. We saw flocks of Corellas & Galahs, 
a few Ravens & Magpies & a pair of Emus before, after about an hour of flying, 
Tania called "Ostrich". We looped around & saw a fine pair with 9 chicks, maybe 
a month old. As we dipped lower for a better look, the adults raised their 
wings in aggressive display, but soon seemed to accept we weren't an immediate 
threat & we had great views. Although Ostriches are considered "plastics", they 
are indeed impressive birds, & to see them in this way was particularly 
exciting. The cost was surprisingly reasonable, & our pilot was keen to help us 
achieve our goal, & imparted a great deal of knowledge on the history of the 
local area.
            Other birds of interest seen during our brief visit to South 
Australia were a pair of Redthroats near Pichi Richi Pass & Mallefowl, Rock 
Parrot, Osprey, Southern Scrub-Robin, Purple-gaped Honeyeater at Innes NP.
                                Brian Johnston

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