the aftermath of the blitz

To: Cog line <>
Subject: the aftermath of the blitz
From: sandra henderson <>
Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2018 04:52:32 +0000
I did my nominated 3 sites and also visited a few spots I visit regularly anyway. I also noted the possum at Point Hut, being woken up every time anyone went by on the causeway up to walking track. Also an echidna at Wanniassa Hills and a large blue-tongue at Callum Brae.
Highlights were gang-gangs at a hollow in Callum Brae, as well as three pairs of Sacred Kingfishers, three pairs of white-winged trillers, and lots of striated Pardalotes coming and going from tiny hollows (a couple of examples in photos in ebird list for that site).
At Hume, which continues to produce a good bird list (60 species on Saturday) despite the rapid development, the first diamond firetails I've had there for several months, bee-eaters along the railway line, fairy martins gathering mud at a puddle.
I trudged out to Red Rocks on my final outing, and managed two frogmouth nests between Kambah Pool and Red Rocks. One sitting bird was restless, so perhaps his chicks are hatching. Managed very quick glimpse of the 4 baby peregrines, before two of them sheltered behind the rock on their ledge. Two were already flapping wings a little, and adult plumage is starting to come through. Parents not sighted, but as usual seem to be doing a great job.
The Gordon Pond had very tiny swamphens and coots. Along John Cory Rd in Hume, near the recycling centre, fairy martins were carrying grass into the culvert (lining nests) and a pair of wedge-tailed Eagles kept about half a dozen cranky smaller birds busy, although one of the latter, a magpie, also decided I was a threat and was determined to see me off.
And the disappointments - NO treecreepers in Callum Brae, for first time ever I think, but also a first for there - a pair of Common Mynas. I've let ranger Nathan know about the latter.
All my lists and some photos for most spots are on ebird.

On Monday, 29 October 2018, Steve Read <> wrote:

Hi all – we (myself, Lach Read and David Dedenczuk) had reasonable birding down Old Boboyan Road in Namadgi NP on Saturday. Highlights included lots of Fuscous Honeyeaters (including one on a nest) and Rufous Songlarks, both Masked and White-browed Woodswallows, a Pacific Heron (now White-necked Heron) on Naas Creek (where we flushed a large Tiger Snake that dived into the creek and watched us intently), and four species of raptor (Wedge-tailed Eagle, Brown Falcon, Kestrel, and a Collared Sparrowhawk at Frank and Jack’s Hut). The number of birds decreased markedly as the morning wore on.


And Lach saw a Spotted Dove in Lyons, our first for the neighbourhood.




From: Mark Clayton <>
Sent: Monday, 29 October 2018 2:56 PM
To: m("","canberrabirds");" target="_blank">
Subject: Re: [canberrabirds] the aftermath of the blitz


I was unavailable for much of the weekend but did manage to get in the two ponds at MacKellar. Not much on either  but the "highlights" or should that be a low lights, was a single Spotted Dove seen calling from a rooftop aerial on a house beside the smaller pond, and a Magpie-lark nest building. My wife decided that as I have just had about 3 weeks in Brazil and Argentina, she wanted to get away somewhere for the weekend. Cowra was very pleasant!



On 29/10/2018 2:38 PM, Dr David Rosalky wrote:

OK, a couple of observations that added interest to my walk around Newline Quarry.


One was a pair of Sacred Kingfishers who were carrying out some house renovations.  After a period foraging they came together on a branch and flew a rapid series of sorties into a hole about 30 or 40 metres away.  At first I thought they must have been feeding young, but the absence of food in the sortie flights suggested otherwise.  Also they spent only about 2 or 3 seconds in the hole at each flight.  So I assume that they are chopping away at wood to open the hole a bit.  I have watched SKs flying wildly at a plugged cavity in a tree trunk trying to break through the plug.  I guess it is a race whether their bills break first or the plug.


The other observation was of a large cluster (swarm?) of bees hanging off a lowish branch.  They formed a beautiful drop-shaped suspension about 30 or 40 cm long and about half as wide.  I chose a different tree to sit under for lunch!  This picture is from WIKIPEDIA but is what it looked like.


                 result for bee swarm




From: Philip Veerman
Sent: Monday, 29 October 2018 2:07 PM
To: m("","canberrabirds");" target="_blank">
Subject: RE: [canberrabirds] the aftermath of the blitz


Funny, most years by mid day Monday there is a swag of messages about observations. I did a lot less than I usually do, partly due to a problem with my car and I missed the better sites I usually do. But I think birds well down on all other years. I got no cuckoos, no robins, only 2 kestrels among raptors, not a lot really. Two hours on Mt Taylor without a single Superb Fairy-wren, that has to be a first. But they are at my home and I suspect they may have a nest in my neighbour’s yard. One strange thing at Point Hut I looked at a round thing with an extension, about 3 metres up a Casuarina. I thought a nest - but of what, when I focussed on it with binoculars, it turned out to be a brush-tailed possum and the extension was its tail……..


From: Barbara Allan [m("","allanbm");" target="_blank">]
Sent: Monday, 29 October, 2018 10:12 AM
m("","canberrabirds");" target="_blank">
Subject: [canberrabirds] the aftermath of the blitz


Many thanks to all who participated in COG’s bird blitz over the weekend. I’ve been (happily) inundated with eBird records and it will take me a while to get though them and get back to you if I have any queries – especially as I have non-birding visitors! Just a reminder to the hard-copy folk – do get your records prepared and either bring them to the next COG meeting on Nov 14 or mail them to COG, PO box 301, Civic Square 2608. The general consensus thus far is, it is pretty quiet out there.  I was pleased to pick up Rose Robin and Bassian Thrush (Blundells CK) and Wonga Pigeon (Blue Range Hut and de Salis Ck) and Satin Flycatcher (Lick Hole Rd) but the only raptors were kestrels (Cotter Hut), and only one Scarlet Robin (Cotter Hut). It will be most interesting to see the overall picture. Once again, many thanks to all participants. b





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