WTP - Seven at a time

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: WTP - Seven at a time
From: jenny spry <>
Date: Wed, 21 Sep 2011 14:53:58 +1000
Hi all,

Well the old story about the tailor and flies goes something like that
anyway, but at WTP on Monday we had the wonderful site of a pair of swans
and their seven fluffy-white swanlets. They were on pond 4 at the “T”
section with the crakes. There are still at least three Baillon’s and three
Australian Spotted in the reed-beds and they were easy to watch, even with
the wind blowing in excess of 50 kph.

The wind made wader watching very hard as it had to be done from inside the
car. I have a monopod for the scope so with the lee side window open it was
not too bad – except when we got a back draft. Yuck, poopond dust
everywhere. As soon as I got home the binoculars went into the kitchen sink
for a wash, my clothes hit the laundry floor and I headed straight for the

The wind was hard on the birds too with many flying backwards until they
changed their travel plans and stopped trying to fly into it. One swan at
the “T” section would have made a very easy photo as it was flying hard
without moving, until it gave up and landed back in the pond.

Many of the Red-necked Stints are still carrying colour and make a nice
change from the usual winter grey we normally see. The other coloured wader,
the Golden Plover, has now been confirmed 100% as a Pacific after some
confusing plumage elements were cleared up but on Monday it was nowhere to
be seen.

There were very few ducks around but some rafts of Coots were practicing
surfing the waves on the ponds and bay and Avocets, Black-wing and Banded
Stilts are still in big numbers. To add to the egrets and herons that are
normally seen there were also three White-necked Herons down at the Western

Non-birding event of the day was watching a very beautiful tiger snake on
one of the dry mud edges to the track. It moved steadily along the bank
sticking its head into every crack and small hole it could find as it
checked for a feed. It was fascinating to watch.

The wind made the day so unpleasant that we didn't try for every species but
I still had a total of 72 when I entered the sightings onto my computer. It
will also be interesting to hear what all that north wind blew down to
Victoria when people start reporting in.

There is also an empty black and tan camera/binocular case in the bird hide
too, if anyone has lost one.



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