Re: birding-aus RFI west coast and Pilbara birding

To: Steve Clark <>
Subject: Re: birding-aus RFI west coast and Pilbara birding
Date: Mon, 7 Jun 1999 17:31:39 +0800
Steve Clark <> asked about finding the following
species in Western Australia.  I replied to the list so a copy is kept in
the archive.

First, I have some WA Birding information on my home web pages at

Go to the WA Sites section for the information on Cue.  Go to the WA
Species section for a little information about the species.  I highly
recommend visiting the Birds Australia WA Group offices near Perry Lakes to
get the country brochures for Geraldton, Kalbarri, Shark Bay, Carnarvon,
Pardoo, etc.  Address / phone etc on my reference section.  The office is
open from 9:30 to 12:30 each weekday, usually until 3pm on Tuesdays.

Thick-billed Grasswren - Very easy in the car park at Monkey Mia, and the
walk there around the dam.

Grey Honeyeater - See my web pages for Cue and Beacon.  Very hard to get,
but they are a chance.  The Yalgoo to Mt Magnet road is also recommended.
I will be looking for this with a Queensland birder later this week.  They
are reported to be fairly common around Tom Price but this could be out of
your way.  They look like the illustration in Pizzey & Knight, not the
illustration in Simpson & Day.

Yellow Chat - Not in the Pilbara.  Only in the Kimberley.

Ground Cuckoo-shrike - You should have a good chance near Cocklebiddy as
you cross the Nullarbor.  They used to breed near the turnoff to the Eyre
Bird Observatory.  A chance elsewhere.

Chiming Wedgebill - Very easy on the way to Denham / Monkey Mia, just north
of Carnarvon and around Cue.

Chestnut-breasted Quail-thrush - See my site near Cue.

Rufous-crowned Emu-wren - Good chances in areas of spinifex from Exmouth,
Hamersley Ranges, Millstream-Chichester.  I saw several groups in the
Millstream-Chichester NP in October 1995.

Slaty-backed Thornbill - Quite common on Nallan Station near Cue (check for

Slender-billed Thornbill - Try Lake Annean just south of Meekatharra, Lake
Austin just south of Cue and New Beach just south of Carnarvon.  Look in
areas of salt marsh.  See my notes for Cue.  You should see the other race
near the Nullarbor Roadhouse as you cross the Nullarbor along with
Nullarbor Quail-thrush.  See Thomas & Thomas for directions.

Banded Whiteface - A chance in open stony areas around Cue and on Nallan
Station (e.g. Marshalls Paddock).  Especially if there is regrowth after a

Pied Honeyeater - Very nomadic but you have chances from Kalbarri north.

Bourke's Parrot - Common on Nallan Station at Cue.

Alexandra's Parrot / Night Parrot - You have better chances of winning
Powerball Lotto.

Inland Dotterel  - A chance on similar areas to Banded Whiteface.  This has
been reported at Marshalls Paddock on Nallan Station, Lake Austin, New
Beach (?), etc.  We saw Inland Dotterel just north of Cook on the
Nullarbor, but this will probably be out of your way.

Grey Falcon - A chance in the Pilbara.

North of Geraldton it is worth stopping at the Murchison River Bridge (the
east side).  I think you can bush camp here.  Good birding but none of your
target species.

The area from the Overland Roadhouse to Denham and Monkey Mia is very good
birding.  Stop at one or more of the windmills.  The caravan park at
Hamelin Pool is good.  See the stromatolites.  The area around the sewage
ponds in the salt marsh just outside the caravan park is good.  The country
pamphlet for Denham (or Shark Bay) is very good to show you a number of
areas.  I think that Dusky Gerygone gets this far south, otherwise you can
find it at Miaboolya Beach just north of Carnarvon along with Mangrove Grey

As you head north to Carnarvon, you will pass the turnoff to Carbla
Station.  Just past this turnoff there is a cattle grid, and on the
northern side there is a rough track to the west.  Follow this for 500
metres of so to an artesian bore.  There is very good birding here.  Don't
camp here unless you ask at the station.  I highly recommend the country
brochure for Carnarvon.  You could spend 2 or 3 days birding around
Carnarvon.  As you head north from Carnarvon, you pass the the turnoff to
Quobba Point, etc.  A few kilometres past this on the right you will see a
claypan about 100 metres off the road.  This is good birding (Australian
Spotted Crake, Chiming Wedgebill, etc).

I recommend Millstream Chichester NP if you can fit it in, although
refuelling can be a problem here.  Rufous-crowned Emu-wren, Spinifexbird,
etc were fairy common and Striated Grasswren is a chance.  You can probably
find these in the right place in the Karajini (Hamersley) NP.  Let me know
if you see Striated Grasswren anywhere as I am still looking for this in

I strongly recommend staying at Nallan Station.  You can stay in the
shearers sheds, or you may even be able to camp.  Don't bird on Nallan
Station unless you stay there, or at least ask permission at the homestead.
This is great birding and you could easily stay there for 3, 4 or 5 days
and explore the surrounding areas.  Unfortunately I will only have two
nights there this trip.  I am planning to add a Cue bird list to my web
pages, so please send me your sightings for this area.

Other stations further south are Ninghan Station, White Wells Station,
Thundelarra Station.  Get the RACWA Accomodation Guides if you can (the RAC
is in Adelaide Terrace in the city, and they have an office in Geraldton).
The RACWA has some maps, plus the Perth Map Centre is in Hay Street just
west of His Majestys Theatre.

Newman Rock between Cocklebiddy and Norseman is a good camping spot, with a
few birds.

For any queries, reply to  as I fly home tonight.

All the best
Frank O'Connor

PS : Steve - Do you know my cousin Vicki Mack who lives in / near Hamilton?

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