Trip Report : Wyperfeld/Hattah, Vic - Spring 2003 (Long)

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Subject: Trip Report : Wyperfeld/Hattah, Vic - Spring 2003 (Long)
Date: Mon, 6 Oct 2003 11:35:58 +1000

Inspired by Tim Dobly's trip report to Wyperfeld, i spent the weekend around the Causarina Campground and surrounding area in my first birding trip to the Mallee. The area was buzzing with activity at day and night, and the vegetation was very impressive. On arriving at about 11pm on Friday night, Southern Boobook calls could be heard everywhere. We went spotlighting over the ridge to the east of the campground and flushed probably 15 Southern Boobooks. A possum was also seen.

During the day, the weather consisted of patchy clouds, but once the clouds cleared, the sun was fierce! (if your planning a trip to the Mallee, do it sooner rather than later.) I'll definently be getting back up that way during October, since we didn't have the time to go hunting emu-wren, redthroat, shy hylacola etc.

50-60 species were seen in the northern section of Wyperfeld. Which personally included about 20 ticks.

Ticks included Inland, Yellow and Buff-rumped Thornbill,  (#Yellow Rumped Pardolote), Spotted Harrier, Crimson Chat, White Winged Triller, Rufous Songlark, Yellow Plumed, White Fronted and  Striped Honeyeater, Mulga Parrot, Regent Parrot, Blue Bonnet, Major Mitchell Cockatoo, Southern Bobook, Masked and Black Faced Woodswallow and Superb Fairy Wren.


** Below are a few additional notes to Tim's initial email:


Trip Report: Wyperfeld National Park (and Hattah-Kulkyne National Park)
Sept 27 – Oct 2, 2003.

Other birds of note included Spotted Harrier,

** We saw about 4-5 Spotted Harriers over the weekend, including some amazing flight displays(rolling, diving) from a 1st year. It took us about 30minutes to actually ID it as a spotted harrier, since the bird looked generally grey with black markings from a distance, and it was only from the aid of a digital camera and digital zoom, that we could see the chestnut body and defining tail.

** We also saw a 'black and white' raptor that seemed much smaller than a harrier, but we could only assume it was another young spotted harrier.  

Here’s a few details.

* Northern Wyperfeld National Park
In the Casuarinas campsite serval pairs of Striped Honeyeater where
breeding – with an active nest next to the toilet block!!!

** There was a another nest about 100 metres before the turnoff into the camp site(east side). Some great views of the chicks being feed in the 'hanging backet' nest in the end of a causarina branch.

Around the  campsite there were also large numbers of parrots. Regent Parrot were
common (someone recorded a flock of 150 birds!)

** Regent Parrots were spectacular. As part of the 'favorite colour' thread, the golden yellow and green of a flock of regent parrots 'exploding' from the grass was truly spectacular.

Crimson Chat was recorded on the Meridian Track between the Northern
Wyperfeld entrance and the Casuarinas campsite - in roadside Cyperpress-
pine approximately 300 metres south of the Wool Track turn-off. At this
spot (termed "The Crimson Chat Site") we also recorded several pairs of
Elegant Parrot, as well as Masked, Black-faced and White-browed
Woodswallow, White-winged Triller, and both Rufous and Brown Songlark.

** Close to this area we found a crimson chat nest in a small patch of scrub. The male and female (or possibly juvenile male) were both seen sitting in the nest.  

** I marked this site with a stone cairn, if anyone is interested in locating it.

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