Re: birding-aus Trip to Nallan Station, WA

To: "Roger McGovern" <>
Subject: Re: birding-aus Trip to Nallan Station, WA
Date: Wed, 1 Sep 1999 10:08:34 +0800
Roger McGovern wrote about Nallan Station near Cue in Western Australia.  I
can recommend this as a highlight.  I will be visiting Nallan again with a
friend Warwick Pickwell from Queensland in November.  Dates will roughly be
leaving Perth on Sunday 13th returning on Wednesday 17th.  We will be
staying in the cottage hopefully which from memory can house 10 or so.  I
may have a spare seat in the car, or else others are welcome to join with
their car.  A 4WD is beneficial, but not required.

It is a shame that April has to sell. She and her husband (on my first
visit) have been very helpful each time I have visited.  It would be
tremendous if the station could be bought for conservation, but I think
that the operating costs would be too high for an organisation such as
Birds Australia who have problems funding the four observatories.  I think
that I noticed recently that John Walmsley's Earth Sanctuaries Limited
bought Mount Gibson Station which I think is between Wubin and Payne's Find
which is half way from Perth to Cue.  The station is mostly mulga, but
there are areas of breakaway, there is Nallan Lake, there is a (usually
dry) watercourse lined by eucalypts, there are some areas with paperbarks,
there are areas of bluebush (saltbush?), etc.  I hope that she can sell for
a fair price, as I believe there are three or four other stations in the
region also for sale because of the very low wool prices, but Nallan has
the advantage of good tourist numbers especially in the wildflower season.

As Roger said, you can stay in the homestead fully catered, or in the
cottage with the choice of catering, or in the shearers quarters, or camp
or a caravan.  About the only down side are the double gees (woody like 4
corner jack burrs).

Other birding highlights on Nallan Station or within an hours drive that
Roger did not mention include Western Bowerbird, Chiming Wedgebill, Rufous
Fieldwren, Slender-billed Thornbill, Redthroat, Little Button-quail, Mulga
Parrot, Bush Stone-curlew, chance of Banded Whiteface, chance of Inland
Dotterel, chance of Black-tailed Native-hen.  One of my visits was in late
September, and there were birds breeding everywhere.  There was also an
excellent variety of reptiles (mostly monitors, skinks, geckos and a couple
of snakes) and some frogs.

Roger is the second person to say that he missed Slaty-backed Thornbill
recently.  On my first two visits they were as common as the
Chestnut-rumped Thornbills, but on my last visit in June we only found two
groups.  On my second visit I road killed one which I took to the WA
Museum.  I noticed that the overall number of birds in June was very much
lower than my previous trips in February 1996 (or 1995?) and September

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