Camping at Bittangabee Bay in S. Ben Boyd NP near Eden
before the cold came in (i.e. Tue-Thurs) just like the wave of Easter migrants
I passed on the way home to Canberra (why is it people with horse floats must choose
the afternoon/evening to wind their way slowly down the King’s Highway?).
Most of the usual suspects, ornithologically that is. A few highlights, mostly
on a walk to Green Cape and back:
parrot flushed twice in succession along Light to Light trail in the heathland
between Pulpit Rock and the GC Lighthouse. Fleeting, green and unexpected.
calls of Southern Emu Wrens only rewarded a couple of times with the tan colour
being the main memory.
Welcome Swallows combing same heathland sweeping down to sea, surprised by
rushing wind over feathers sound as Forktail Swift scythed by just a few metres
away. Stood and experienced several do this, noise almost preceding bird,
as they hurtled towards the sea.
have been a good breeding season for Fantail Cuckoos amongst the Little Wattlebirds
as several juveniles in varying plumage seen in tea tree/banksia areas of
the forest between Bittangabee and Pulpit, Beautiful Firetail put in
fleeting appearance at rocky creek crossing, Sitellas quite frequent, both
Rufous and Grey Fantails in company with other small birds such as Striated
Thornbills and Yellow Robins.
juvenile Rose Robins with accompanying female almost collided with me on track.
of Lyrebirds, foraging female unconcerned alongside trail, vocal male much more
concerned, almost as if challenger in the way he accompanied me off the premises
(I may be single but really...)
Monitors, several on walk but largest in camp ground, pretending to be the “useless
dog” of recent TV coverage by slumping to ground once eye-contact
made. Obviously faring well on human leavings given size. Komodo came to
Wallabies, aka Swamp Wallabies, unbelievably heavy over the ground sounding as
if they are deliberately thrashing the earth, unlike the Eastern Grey Roo I
almost tripped over in the dusk on my way to the toilet. Reading
description of the Swampies understand this thumping is actually an alarm
behaviour. Observed later that when seen at close quarters the wallabies had
this nervous tick when being watched that amounted to a little sideways
jump/shuffle. However that does not do justice to the noise they make in hasty
retreat, Eastern Greys being ballerinas by comparison.
a fair number of seabirds off the coast, Crested and Caspian Terns closest to
shore, further off a few Gannets mostly immature and, once “flushed”
Shearwaters of some sort, given my inexperience with this tribe, my best guess would
be Short-tailed but really too far to identify for a first timer.