Kerang lakes and that Dowitcher

To: "Birding Aus Mailing List" <>
Subject: Kerang lakes and that Dowitcher
From: "Simon and Alex Starr" <>
Date: Fri, 14 Nov 2014 19:11:34 +1100
Hi Birding Aus, 
Here is a copy of a message I just posted on the Victorian Birders facebook
page. Perhaps it should go on the Australian Twitchers facebook page also,
but I'm time poor at the moment, I'm guessing people will work it out. 

"I've received a few emails from tickers and dippers this week!. The bird
does not seem to have been seen since Tuesday evening despite a small army
looking for it on Wed etc. Here is a quick update on the state of the other
lakes in the area as best as I can work out for anypne heading up that
way.... Lake Murphy has recently been filled and has lots of duck and Glossy
Ibis but apparently no waders as yet, probably too full. Lake Elizabeth may
be interesting as it is being kept at a level after the reintroduction of
Murray Hardyhead. If its anything like Round Lake then it does attract a few
waders, but not big numbers.
Fosters swamp near Kerang can be good. It is probably quite dry now, I
haven't been there for some time but perhaps worth checking out. Access used
to be through the poo ponds just on the east side of town. Gates may be
locked now, but you can still get there from Kerang back streets. 

But perhaps the best option may be HIRDS swamp. Recently it had dried up
considerably and there were quite good numbers of Sharpies, Marsh Sand, Lots
of Red-kneed Dotterel and a couple of Wood Sandpiper ( not to mention Glossy
Ibis, Brolga, Australasian Bittern, White-bellied Sea-Eagle and numerous
Spotted Crakes etc). Since then I believe they have added some top up water,
but it tends to take a while to fill and the levels were very low so there
could well still be plenty of muddy edges. Only real viewing now is down the
east side, access from near the Pyramid Creek bridge on the Leitchville
Finally there is McDonald swamp near Cohuna. It has been good for Wood
Sandpiper in the past, plus Dotterels etc. Haven't been there recently but
it should have water in it also. If you are in the area, check out Majors
road.....there are heaps of Plumed Whistling Duck still apparently

Anyone heading up that way this weekend is sure of some interesting birding,
Dowitcher or no Dowitcher !!  And when you are fuelling up, or buying food
etc, let the locals know you are there to look at the birds. Kerang is very
pro hunting as many duck hunters go there, but it wont hurt for them to
realise there are other reasons for visiting :)

Simon Starr

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