SW Queensland

To: <>, BirdingAus <>
Subject: SW Queensland
From: Judith Hoyle <>
Date: Sun, 27 Jan 2008 07:08:41 +0000
Dear Anne,

I think July and August are great times to visit SW QLD!  My first visit to the 
area was at the same time of the year and all I can remember is great birding, 
great weather and very cold nights!  There had been abundant rain, too so the 
desert looked spectacular.

Southwest QLD is so big and I don't know how much of it you want to try to get 
to, how long you have got and what your target birds are.  For what it's worth 
though, I thought I'd let you know about an 11 day trip Gavin, Peter and I did 
in April 2007 from Brisbane to Mt Isa and back.  Although Mt Isa can hardly be 
described as south western Queensland we travelled via St George, Bowra 
Station, Windorah, Bedourie and Boulia and back via Winton and Longreach, hence 
I thought this may be of use to you. We saw 182 species and travelled nearly 
5,000ks (not everyone's cup of tea in so short a time).  I have listed the 
birding highlights at the end of this email.

We travelled in our Pajero, but a conventional vehicle would have easily done 
the trip (although I am not sure what the tracks are like on Bowra Station 
after rain). We did a combination of camping and staying in caravan parks and 
motels.  Our target birds were the Grasswrens in Mt Isa, but we had wonderful 
birding along the way and, apart from Bowra Station, Boulia and Bedourie had 
plenty going for them from a birding point of view.

We travelled west to St George for the first night, birding as we went.  We 
reached Bowra the next afternoon and camped two nights there. It was well worth 
the trip and the only thing that stopped us staying longer was our very tight 
time frame.

Next stop was Windorah.  We had an enforced 2 day stay there because the town 
had run out of petrol.  We spent 2 days camped by Cooper's Creek just outside 
Windorah.  It would have been idyllic but for the 3 trillion flies!  Fly veils 
are essential! Our determination to swap to a diesel 4WD for our next purchase 
disappeared when we finally got to Boulia and were told that Boulia was out of 
diesel for 2 weeks the previous year!

We planned to spend a night at Boulia.  Birding along the way between Windorah, 
Bedourie and Boulia was spectacular as there had been a lot of rain.  
Unfortunately the town was booked out for the annual camel races so we 
travelled on to Dajarra.  It was dark when we got there so we ended up in the 
only accommodation on offer which was the worst I have ever stayed - anywhere!  
If we had been able to get there in the daylight we could have pulled off on 
the Dajarra - Duchess Road which was just beautiful.

We drove to Mount Isa along this road the next morning and had great views of 
Rufous-crowned Emu-wren and Painted Finch. Spent 2 nights at Mt Isa.  Apart 
from the Grasswren hot spots, we paid a visit to the Mt Isa sewage ponds and 
Lake Moonderah - both well worth a visit.

On our only full day in Mt Isa we went to McNamara's Road and back to Mica 
Creek - picking up the Carpentarian and Kalkadoon Grasswrens.   If you look in 
the Birding-Aus archives you should also be able to track down Bob Forsyth's 
mud maps for these birds which he very kindly posted in the past. He also gives 
details on where to pick up the Emu-wren along the Dajarra-Duchess Road.

Next day we drove from Mt Isa to Bladensberg NP at Winton, via Cloncurry.  Had 
a lovely camp in the park and picked up an Owlet Nightjar in the morning.

Next day we arrived in Roma via Longreach and on the final day, we travelled 
back to Brisbane from Roma via Dalby and Toowoomba.  My pleas to divert to 
Bunya National Park near Dalby fell on deaf ears, but if you have the time it 
would be worth it to pick up rainforest species!

Hope this is of use.

Kind regards


Some of the birding highlights were:

Hoary-headed Grebe (between Windorah and  Bedourie)
Great-crested Grebe (Lake Moondah, Mt Isa)
Little Egret (Gatton)
Nankeen Night Heron (Bedourie)
Glossy Ibis (Windorah - Bedourie)
Royal Spoonbill (Bowra)
Yellow Spoonbill (Bowra)
Black-necked Stork (near road about 10 ks outside St George)
Black-breasted Buzzard (Quilpie)
Spotted Harrier (Bedourie)
Little Eagle (Bladensberg NP)
Australian Hobby (Cooper's Creek, Windorah)
Brolga (Cooper's Creek, Windorah)
Australian Bustard (Cloncurry - Winton road)
Marsh Sandpiper (Lake Moonderah, Mt Isa)
Wood Sandpiper (Sewage Ponds, Mt Isa)
Long-toed Stint (Sewage Ponds, Mt Isa)
Comb-crested Jacana (Lake Moonderah, Mt Isa)
Red-necked Avocet (Lake Moonderah)
Banded Lapwing (road between Cunnammulla and Bowra Station)
Australian Pratincole (north of Windorah)
Gull-billed Tern (Bedourie)
Whiskered Tern (Bedourie)
White-winged Black Tern (Bedourie)
Spinifex Pigeon (Dajarra-Duchess Road)
Red-tailed Black Cockatoo (Windorah)
Major Mitchell's Cockatoo (St George and Bowra Station)
Varied Lorikeet (McNamara's Road, Mt Isa)
Red-winged Parrot (lots along the way!)
Australian Ringneck (Bowra Station and Bladensberg NP)
Blue Bonnet (Bowra Station)
Mulga Parrot (Bowra Station)
Budgerigar (lots along the way)
Bourke's Parrot (at a road side stop near Toompine)
Spotted Nightjar (Boulia to Dajarra Road)
Australian Owlet Nightjar (Bladensberg NP)
Blue-winged Kookaburra (Mt Isa)
Red-backed Kingfisher (Windorah)
White-browed Treecreeper (Bowra Station)
Splendid Fairy-wren (Bowra Station)
White-winged Fairy-wren
Rufous-crowned Emu-wren (18ks along the Dajarra-Duchess Road)
Carpentarian Grasswren (McNamara's Road, Mt Isa)
Kalkadoon Grasswren (Mica Ck, Mt Isa)
Slaty-backed Thornbill (Bowra)
Southern Whiteface (Bowra)
Silver-crowned Friarbird (Mt Isa)
Grey-headed Honeyeater (Windorah)
Grey-fronted Honeyeater (Mt Isa)
Black-chinned Honeyeater (heard on the Dajarra-Duchess Road)
Brown-headed Honeyeater (Morwen)
Crimson Chat (between Cunnamulla - Bowra Station)
Gibberbird (Windorah to Bedourie road)
Hooded Robin (Bowra Station)
All the babblers (White-browed at Mt Isa, the rest at Bowra Station.  Saw the 
Hall's again at Windorah)
Cinnamon Quail-thrush (Windorah to Bedourie Road)
Chestnut-breasted Quail-thrush (Bowra Station)
Masked Woodswallow (Bedourie)
Little Woodswallow (Cunammulla)
Little Crow (Bowra Station)
Apostlebird (St George)
Spotted Bowerbird (Bowra Station)
Diamond Firetail (Bowra Station)
Painted Finch (Dajarra - Duchess Road and near road below radio tower on way to 
McNamara's Road, Mt Isa)
Spinifexbird (Lake Moonderah and on Dajarra-Duchess Road)
Brown Songlark (Windorah to Bedourie road)
Judith Hoyle

> From: > Date: Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:37:10 -0500> To: 
> > Subject: [Birding-Aus] SW Queensland> > My 
> daughter and family live in Brisbane and my partner and I are visiting > them 
> this July/August - not the best birding time but coincides with my > 
> birthday. > We've previously 'done' Cairns area and Lamington but know 
> nothing about the > SW and we're very keen birders. We plan to visit 
> southwest Queensland and > Bowra this August. How long should we stay to make 
> the most of the birds in > the area and should we make it a multi centre 
> stay? I realise that we need to > stay overnight somewhere on the trip from 
> Brisbane but can't find any > caravan type sites with cheap chalet 
> accommodation. I believe that a 4x4 would be > advantageous too.> We would 
> really appreciate any advice you can give us - just don't reply > if you 
> think it's a cheek ! Any birders in the area who we could hire to > do day 
> trips? > Any ideas re an itinerary would be most welcome.> Many questions, 
> please forgive me !> regards> Anne M> > > > > > 
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