To: "Vella, Edwin" <>
From: moris <>
Date: Mon, 23 Mar 1998 20:17:45 +1100
Vella, Edwin wrote:
> Last Saturday afternoon, I went with my birding mate, David Koffel, to
> find him a Lewins Rail to add to his life list.
> We started the afternoon at about 1 pm at the McGraths Hill STW (near
> Windsor), hoping to see if any unusual waders have popped in. There were
> about 8 Red-kneed Dotterels there but the only migratory shorebirds
> present there, were a Double-banded Plover, 2 Sharp-tailed Sandpipers and
> a Black-tailed Godwit .  A good number of both Teal species were also
> present aswell as a few Australasian Shovelers.
> About this time last year at this STW, I saw one Long-toed Stint,
> together with 2 Sharp-tailed and 2 Pectoral Sandpipers all in breeding
> plumage. I was hoping for something similar on this Saturday afternoon.
> At about 3:30 pm, we arrived at Dharug NP at the western side of Mill
> Creek. We were off to see some Rails at a section of the park which is
> off limits to the public as you have to get to a swamp via a private
> road. I was granted permission beforehand with a NSWNP ranger, who
> resides at the end of this private road. We saw here one (and heard
> another) Lewins Rail aswell as a Buff-banded Rail and Spotless Crake. The
> good thing about this swamp is that you can get very close to the Rails
> almost within 1 meter of them (and I am not exagerating, even without
> playing a tape, because the clear muddy sections were they feed is
> limited. The Rails feed away taking little notice of you and at times, I
> have been looking at the both rail species from above them).
> Others birds of interest seen along the private road that afternoon, were
> 4 Brown Quails, 3 Brush Turkeys, 8 Wonga Pigeons and Azure Kingfisher.
> Glossy Black-Cockatoos were also heard upon departure.
> We went spotlighting around Central Colo on about 8 pm, hoping to see a
> Masked Owl, but had a fine view of a Barn Owl on a fence post there as a
> complimentary prize.
> A fine afternoon and evening indeed !
> Edwin Vella
> P.S. I saw atleast 88 Plumed Whistling Ducks yesterday afternoon (Sunday,
> 22nd March) at the Richmond Turf Farms.

Dear Edwin & Birding Aus readers
Re Private Rd, Mill Creek, Dharug NP
I regret to say that there is no ranger living at the end of the private
road at Mill Creek, Dharug NP and there has not been one there for some
6 months, so that the private road remains exactly that, a road that
belongs to the four private property owners whose houses front Mill
Creek. Only those people can give you approval to walk along that road
and not some non-resident NPWS ranger!

Alan Morris
(in working hours, the NPWS Central Coast District Manager)

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