Dooley... are you out there?

Subject: Dooley... are you out there?
From: Evan Beaver <>
Date: Sat, 24 Dec 2005 08:30:37 +1100
Hi everyone, this is my first post. I recently read Dooley's Big Twitch, and I thought he'd be glad to know, but it inspired a good friend and I to go on an official birding trip. Just a short one, skipping over the Blue Mountains to the Capertee Valley, about 2.5 hours away. We're both avid (amateur) naturalists and a birding trip seemed the logical next step. On the way out we decided that more than anything we wanted to see a Rainbow Bee-eater, and a wombat (not a bird). Driving along the dirt road on our way out there, I looked up from the passenger seat to see a Bee-eater flying along a couple of meters above us. I got an excellent view of a beautiful bird, that if I'd been keeping a life list, would have been a definite new addition. So with the target species out of the way, we concentrated on relaxing (it was VERY hot) and let the birds come to us. This added some other 'lifers' for both of us, I'll give a little list:
Noisy Friarbird (a first for Al, I've got a family living in my backyard)
A few honey eaters, yellow tufted, white-cheeked, but sadly no Regent
Lots of Red Rumped parrots (a first for me)
A couple of Kings and Crimson Rosellas
90% certain of a pair of Ground Parrots. They were sitting on the road, and obviously not Red Rumps. I thought it was a budgy at first, but closer inspection revealed otherwise. They flew off before we could declare a positive ID. The other 10% uncertainty thinks it might have been a young Ground Parrot. I don't like second guessing my own skills with  against a birds rarity, but in this case it seems prudent.

And we picked up target species number 2 (the wombat) waddling along the road on the way out. All in all an extremely successful trip, and bound to be the first of many. I hope everyone has a good christmas, and that you're all prepared to put up with some amateurish posts from me over the next few months.
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