Far North Queensland sightings

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Subject: Far North Queensland sightings
From: "Phil Gregory" <>
Date: Sun, 21 Nov 2004 10:50:07 +1000
It's been a busy and interesting time up here of late, recent sightings along Black Mountain Road include the family of 4 chicks and one adult male Cassowary coming daily at Cassowary House, Kuranda. They first came on Oct 29 and are growing fast.
On Nov 3 at 0200 we found them sitting by the side of the road by the entrance drive, all 4 chicks tucked under the male. We'd just come back from seeing Masked Owl up near Julatten and it was totally unexpected to find them roosting in such an open and obvious place. I moved them away as I was concerned about speeding drivers later on. I have only ever seen the adult and chicks once before at night, and that was on a full moon at 2300 when they appeared in the garden, no doubt disturbed by something.
The female comes in several days a week and sometimes meets up with them all, they seem to get on just fine with no animosity being shown.
Double-eyed Fig-Parrots are showing very nicely at a nest site high in dead tree limb along the road, I think the pair are feeding the youngsters.
White-eared Monarch have been silent for weeks and hard to find since the late winter breeding finished, but 18/11 we had a group of five calling along Black Mt Road, presumably a family party.
White-browed Crake: The birds at the freshwater lake in Centenary Park Cairns had two long legged black chicks with paler markings on the side of the face on 18/11, much more long legged than Red-necked Crake chicks.
Red-necked Crake two adults daily at Cassowary House, and another two along the drive, but no sign of breeding as yet as it's so dry here.
Reports from our trip out to Georgetown in October include:
Spinifex Pigeon 5 at Routh Creek 29/10
Grey-fronted Honeyeater One near Georgetown in our usual site 30/10
Banded Honeyeater a couple at Cumberland dam 31/10
Masked Finch 10 at Cumberland Dam 31/10
Plum-headed Finch One at Cumberland Dam with Masked Finch 31/10 This was my first record out here where it is a very scarce visitor.
Black-throated Finch 20 at Cumberland Dam 31/10, 10 there on 29/10
Buff-breasted Paradise-Kingfisher One adult flew through at eye level by the pond at Mareeba TAFE on Tinaroo Creek Road on Nov 13, a bit of a surprise out in such dry sclerophyll and no doubt en route to sites in the Lamb Range nearby!
Phil Gregory
Cassowary House Kuranda


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