Central QLD and coast trip

To: Birding Aus <>
Subject: Central QLD and coast trip
From: Michael Shawn Wood <>
Date: Thu, 28 Aug 2003 12:52:08 +0930
Hello everyone,

I have just recently returned here in Adelaide from an epic journey through
the Birdsville Track, up to Boulia, through central Queensland to Winton
(fantastic town and loved the people there), up to Hughendon, Lynd Junction,
Cumberland Dam, Atherton tablelands, the Daintree River, Cairns and back down
the coast. My last stop was Lamington, where I managed to hurt myself badly by
slipping on a wet rock within a creek on the Box Forest Trail and came down
heavily on my shoulder and legs -breaking my binoculars, which became inflamed
once I stopped moving back at the campsite. Had I stopped for some time back
at the creek and allowed the leg to jar, I may have experienced great
difficulties returning the 6 or 7 kms back to camp. Birdwatching is a
dangerous business, no?

Anyway, this is not why I am writing to you all. I wanted to thank everyone
who helped me plan the trip and those that assisted along the way. If it was
not for this assitance I may not have got to see many of the brilliant birds
that sometimes seem so exotic and out of reach to us southerners, particularly
those like me who had never been birding in such places.

The desert section of the trip was fantastic and, if it were not for the
brilliant exotics closer to the coast, I may have tore my hair out. The amount
of traffic on the road, particulalry the Atherton tablelands and Cairns was
unbearble on occasions, although I must admit that the Queensland people were
always courteous. I had not expected it to be such a junket.

All up, well over 300 species were seen during the five weeks -there was
almost that many seen in the state of Queensland alone. Not having been up
there before, I managed over 100 new species, which was well over the 50 I was
expecting beforhand. Some of the better sightings included a Rufous Owl and
Barking Owl, Beach Stone-curlews, Little Kingfisher -thanks Chris Dahlberg.
The trip out to Michaelmas Cay was fantastic; although there was not a great
deal of diversity out there at the time, approaching the island and seeing the
dark cloud of thousands of waterbirds was some spectacular sight.

I am in the process of putting together a list and actually determining
exactly how many new species were seen and how many overall during the entire
trip. I can email it to anyone who is interested.

Once again, thankyou to those who helped.


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