Townsville March 17 to 21

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Townsville March 17 to 21
From: jenny spry <>
Date: Sat, 24 Mar 2012 15:08:34 +1100
Hi all,

Returning from our week on Norfolk I flew to Townsville last Saturday for a
few days to stay with Ian. I wanted to see Rufous Owl, Pale-vented Bush-hen
and Zitting Cisticola, three quick and easy birds (smile). I had done my
homework and had some contacts so I was ready to start on Sunday. The rain
started on Saturday as we flew in so on Sunday I drove down to Giru and
after 2 or 3 hours some Zitting Cisticola started doing display flights and
calling so I finally saw them, rather than just hearing them out in the
tall grass.

By now it was 1500 and the road was very wet with an inch or two of water
over the bitumen in one place. When I arrived I could also get about 500
beyond a windmill, but when I left the road up as far as the windmill was
under water. On Monday the Town Common was closed due to flooding. On
Monday night a storm wrecked part of Townsville and Giru was isolated with
all roads in closed. On Tuesday the Palmetum was closed by storm damage.The
golf course was under water and the bunker at the 18th was full to the
brim. The average rain fall while I was there was 200 mm per day and some
areas got close to 400 in a day. Suffice to say I did not see either the
owl or the bush-hen.

I flew out Wednesday morning BUT, the visit was still a real success. I
have never experienced a wet season storm in Australia – nearly a metre of
rain in 4 days! Melbourne maybe wet, but not like that. I will put it down
as one more experience of extreme birding.



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