Incredible abundance of Brown-headed Honeyeaters

To: "birding aus" <>
Subject: Incredible abundance of Brown-headed Honeyeaters
From: "Ricki Coughlan" <>
Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 19:52:11 +1000
G'day birders

I've been frequenting the Castlereagh Forest of late, just out of Windsor. The 
areas dominated by Ironbarks tend to be somewhat quiet for now (waiting for 
them to come into flower). However, elsewhere is extremely productive. 
Diversity isn't so great (40ish species on average each visit) but abundance is 
totally overwhelming. The birding is absolutely non-stop and you really don't 
know which bird to focus on at any one time. One receives the impression that 
you're walking through a never-ending flock of thornbills.

In the course of the last few weeks I've observed a very high abundance of 
Acanthizids (little brown birds), Spotted Pardalotes (who isn't, this time of 
year around Sydney?), juve Golden Whistlers and very good numbers of 
Brown-headed Honeyeaters foraging in the treetops and apparently feeding upon 
lerps almost exclusively. They are totally ignoring the blossoms on the Red 
Bloodwoods. It is of interest to note that I found these honeyeaters quite 
common on the Waratah Track in Ku-ring-gai National Park last week too. I've 
never seen these birds as abundant as they are at present since I took up 
birding some decades ago.

For those of you have found the BH Honeyeater difficult in the past, I'd 
suggest that you head straight out to Castlereagh Forest and you'll have no 
troubles locating them.

Here's a composite of my last two visits (the only difference between this week 
and last week is that I didn't see any raptors, Speckled Warblers or black 
cockatoos today):

Brown Goshawk
Little Eagle (light morph)
Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo
Little Corella
Rainbow Lorikeet
Red-rumped Parrot
Laughing Kookaburra
White-throated Treecreeper
Superb Fairy-wren
Variegated Fairy-wren
Spotted Pardalote
Striated Pardalote (two only)
White-browed Scrubwren
Speckled Warbler
Brown Gerygone
Buff-rumped Thornbill
Yellow Thornbill
Striated Thornbill
Red Wattlebird
Little Wattlebird
Noisy Friarbird
Noisy Miner
White-eared Honeyeater
Fuscous Honeyeater
Brown-headed Honeyeater
Eastern Spinebill
Rose Robin
Eastern Yellow Robin
Golden Whistler
Grey Shrike-thrush
Grey Fantail
Willie Wagtail
Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike
Olive-backed Oriole
Grey Butcherbird
Pied Currawong
Australian Raven
White-winged Chough
Double-barred Finch
Welcome Swallow

Happy birding

Belrose, Sydney

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