As the season changes more and more irreversibly into autumn, we're getting
some compensations for the loss of summer here in the Lockyer Valley.
Cuckoos in particular. They seem to have abounded hereabouts in the last
couple of days. While Nicci Thompson was birding locally on Sunday morning
she encountered Shining Bronze-cuckoo, immature Brush Cuckoo, Fantail Cuckoo
and a rufous morph Oriental Cuckoo, all in one small patch of eucalypt
woodland. The same morning we had Brush Cuckoo and a fairly late Koel
calling here at Abberton, while our resident Pheasant Coucals were engaged
for the most of the day in taking food to their nest at the base of a castor
oil plant just across the creek, in view of the house. Then, in the
afternoon, visitors here found Shining and Little Bronze Cuckoos in the same
general area where Nicci had been that morning. Owen (Jolly) had reported
eight Shining Bronze-cuckoos in nearby Redwood Park last weekend.
Also on Sunday, Russ Lamb from Maleny dropped in. Amongst other things, he
had come across two parties of Plum-headed Finches - a large flock at Lake
Dyer where they have been pretty regular now for the last couple of months
(a bonus bird for several who went there seeking the recent Painted Snipe
family), and another flock along Lockyer Creek a few kilometres downstream
of here. Russ found this latter flock when he stopped at a roadside Lions
Park on the offchance!
There have been five or six reports of White-necked Herons over the last few
days, following several months with hardly a sighting
anywhere in the valley. One flew over us at Abberton yesterday, and
this-morning two circled around on a thermal directly overhead.
So things are moving. And I'm hanging out for the Plumheads to find the
great swathe of creekside panic grass that I'm leaving to go to seed for
them. If they're working their way along the creek they must get here soon!
Lockyer Valley, Queensland.
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