"birding Aus" <>
Tue, 17 Oct 00 15:10:03 +0000
In reply to I think it was Alan Benson - need I say more!
John Reidy and I went to Holmes Jungle (about 15 km from the Darwin CBD)
a couple of weeks ago. He wanted to see Red-backed Button-quails.
However they weren't very obliging. But we did put up half a dozen
Red-chested Button-quails. The area had been badly burnt days before we
went and the birds were in small patches of grass that had escaped the
conflagration (isn't that a great word!). Lots of Little Curlew were
also present, also Sharp-tailed Sandpipers and Red-necked Stints.
I went back last Sunday and then Monday with my partner to find the
button-quails had nicked off as had most of the waders apart from Little
Curlew and a couple of Greenshanks (in reedbeds towards the coast).
Lots of cisticolas, both Zitting and Golden-headed, and Singing Bushlarks
were present, the latter indulging in song flights. By far the most
numerous birds were Magpie-geese of which there were several hundred,
plus 150 brolga (I checked for Sarus Crane but found none).
We had breakfast while watching the birds coming into land. Orange-footed
Scrubfowl and Rainbow Pitta were calling from the monsoon forest. We in
turn were watched, by a male Crimson Finch that perched in rushes behind
us. These plants were full of pretty little frogs, 'Litoria bicolor'.
Then passing the reedbeds near the coast we disturbed a Bush-hen which
fled the scene in a hurry!
Towards the coast are mangroves, mostly pure stands of 'Avicennia
marina'. Birds were scarce here - only Rufous-banded Honeyeaters and a
couple of female Shining Flycatchers one of which performed admirably for
our video camera. On exploring alone I found large dog footprints and
remembered that there have been dog attacks along nearby beaches.
Consequently all thought of coming back alone retreated.
The next morning when we came back the number of magpie-geese had
increased and I estimate there to be over a thousand, plus Aus. White
Ibis. However there were only about a dozen Brolga including a couple of
I'm going back next Sunday morning while it's dark, this time to look for
Denise Goodfellow (Lawungkurr Maralngurra)
Ph/fax 08 89818492
PO Box 39373
WINNELLIE NT 0821, AUSTRALIA
2ndhand and new books
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- Red-chested Buttonquail,
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