Ballow Rim Atlas [SEQ]

Subject: Ballow Rim Atlas [SEQ]
From: Laurie & Leanne Knight <>
Date: Sun, 04 Nov 2001 19:04:40 +1000
Yesterday morning Tim Heiner and I rocked up to Clear Ridge and worked
our way around the Yamahra watershed to Mowburra [28 15, 152 37].  This
pre-lunch session took us through an extensively burnt out area [the
whole area from Mt May through Yamahra Ck and up to Barney Ck and the
rainforest margins of Ballow was burnt in [what appears to have been a
low intensity fire a few weeks ago].

As such, there were plenty of the usual mid-larger birds [eg BF
monarchs, currawongs, WT Treecreepers, noisy friarbirds, crimson
rosellas etc], the odd CB cuckoo/cicadabird and very few small/ground

We passed some excellent lookouts which would have great views if there
wasn't so much smoke haze about [there are still people getting out with
their matches].

It was nice to hit the rainforest about a stone's throw from Mowburra -
not too many birds about there, but the end of the burnt country and
nice views of Mt Barney [centre of the bushwalking universe].  We could
also hear an alberts lyrebird calling from the vicinity of Cedar Pass. 
There was also a delicate little orchid flowering on the side of a tree
- it had 3 leaves and a small white flower with a bit of purple in its

We followed an interesting ridge [not often you get to walk along a soil
based razorback] down to Ballow Ck which we hit adjacent to the Ballow
Rock.  I saw something small and black running the rainforest which
could have been a youngish turkey, but there were few birds to be
observed until we  were approaching our campsite [saw a male rose robin
having a bath].  

Our campsite was located in the middle of a rainforest supermarket and
we were able to atlas a number of customers based on their calls while
we were sitting back and enjoying a 6 year old chardonnay.  These
included white headed, brown and wompoo pigeons, currawongs, satin
bowerbirds and catbirds.  Other birds in the area included logrunners,
alberts lyrebirds, noisy pittas, yellow tailed black cockatoos, BF
monarchs and FT cuckoos.  We also heard a boobook while we were working
our way through the shiraz and admiring the fire flies.

There was a bird calling a bit after dusk that I found rather strange. 
It seemed to be coming from a low position - it was very melodic and
tonally a bit like the call of a canary [although with a completely
different cadence].  In some ways, it was a bit like the sort of call I
would expect something like a nightingale to have [ie far more melodic
than the call of a willie wagtail].  

We saw a couple of turkeys as we were making our way down the creek to
the junction with Barney ck this morning, including a male who had just
been tending to his mound [the odd thing was that the mound was in the
corner of the raked up area].  We saw a few other mounds as we were
heading down the ck, so perhaps that area is a bit of a turkey
stronghold - maybe not so many nasty predators.

Ballow Ck was a bushwalker's delight with clear water, nice open
sections and some good waterholes.  We also saw a crested shrike tit and
a pale yellow robin in the lower areas, and I stepped past a young tiger
snake as I was crossing the creek.

There were fewer birds when we emerged onto Barney Ck, but there were
plenty of those weedy looking trees that were flowering nicely with
their wonderful aroma, the rushes were in full bloom and there was a bit
of some sort of wisteria flowering.

>From there it was down to Yamahra Ck and back to the car.  Nothing
particularly unusual on the birding front, but five more atlas sheets
and some very enjoyable bushwaling.

Regards, Laurie.

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