The 2017 autumn K2C surveys were held in the most challenging weather conditions we’ve had for the 8 years of surveys (which means we’ve been pretty lucky overall). Although soft rain was falling when we left Canberra the early sites around
Michelago and Bredbo were mostly completed in fine weather. Then a fast-moving rain band enforced an extended morning tea for those who were lucky enough to be near shelter. The rain stopped enough for most teams to complete their scheduled sites with some
really interesting observations. Not all sites were completed on the morning and the counts at some were affected by the rain and wind.
Given the weather forecast for the day there was little expectation of witnessing the honeyeater migration that we usually see at this time of year and during the first half of the morning we hardly saw a single honeyeater. However after
the rain had stopped, at the four separate properties being surveyed the honeyeaters, and other birds, suddenly became frenetically active with hundreds of mostly Yellow-faced Honeyeaters moving through. At one site over 700 were recorded as well as hundreds
of Pardalotes (Spotted and Striated) and Silvereyes, but all were heading doggedly in the complete opposite direction to which they normally go at this time of year.
Another interesting sighting was of a Pied Butcherbird. In the previous survey a pair of these was recorded on one of the northernmost sites near Williamsdale, but this bird was recorded south of Michelago. Other highlights of the morning
included a pair of Jacky Winter near Williamsdale, Scarlet Robins on 7 properties, Dusky Woodswallow (6 properties), Brown Treecreeper in good numbers on 6 properties, Diamond Firetail (3), Speckled Warbler (2), Flame Robin (1), Gang-gang (1), Restless Flycatcher
(1), Southern Whiteface(1) and an Owlet-nightjar. No Hooded Robins in this survey.
Once again I’d like to thank Bush Heritage for hosting us for lunch at Scottsdale Reserve. Thank you to the COG volunteers for persevering through the adverse conditions and to the landholders for their continuing permission to conduct
the surveys. Next surveys on 8 October.