We have just had a few days in Mudgee, picked up fifty plus
species, most of them in Lawson Park on the Cudgegong River. Commonest were
Galahs and European Starlings. Many birds nesting or feeding young.
There was some interesting bird behavior.
As part of the annual Huntington Estate Music Festival, a prodigy
pianist from New York was playing a Beethoven Sonata in E flat major on a
Steinway Grand in an otherwise hushed winery cum concerthall. Very loud and
clear, the alarm call of a Blue-faced Honeyeater repeatedly interrupted at
critical moments, until chased away by the winemaker throwing stones. The
pianist appeared unfazed. A regular attendee noted that this happened every
year, but only when piano movements in E flat major were playing.(?)
A Pacific Black Duck fluttered up to an Elm Tree near the river,
landing on a horizontal branch about twenty metres up and just sat. This was
early morning. Elms don't have nesting holes, the duck wasn't being chased
and looked quite content, it wasn't in the sun. There were plenty of PBDs on
the river. Have never seen a PBD so high up a tree.
Mudgee is famous for its wines, but vineyards and fruit-eating
birds dont mix. Most grapegrowers net their vines, but one told me that she
bred pigeons which attracted "hawks" at the critical time when grapes were
ripening and Silvereyes were rampant. She assured me that the hawks,
gathered for a feed of pigeons, also kept the Silvereyes away.
Brown Quail (H)
Mallard, Mallard/PBD hybrids
Pacific Black Duck
Little Black Cormorant
Little Pied Cormorant
Australian White Ibis
Corella (?sp). Single bird.
Western Gerygone (H)
50km west of Sydney Harbour Bridge
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