I am just writing to report a successful expedition to Rainbow Beach SEQ where
I was lucky enough to find the Ground Parrot & the Black-breasted Buttton-quail
on the same day.
1. Ground Parrot
One parrot was seen 50m from the location suggested in Thomas & Thomas. This is:
Drive 16km West from Rainbow Beach
Turn Left/South onto Cooloola Way
After 2.9km turn Left/East down a track just before the powerline
After 1.7km stop on the 'bridge' (actually a small hump in the road over a
19 Jan 2009 06.30 One parrot flushed beside the road, 50 m East of the bridge
2. Black-breasted Button-quail
One BBBQ was sighted in the location suggested by Sean Dooley in his first book.
>From Rainbow Beach Drive approx 10km North to Inskip Point. (This is where the
>ferries leave to go to Fraser Island.)
Drive as far as the turning loop on the bitumen.
Park just before the loop.
Leading NW from the loop is a sandy walking track which leads a short distance
to the point.
After about 1-200m hundreds of 'platelets' were found. These are caused by the
BBBQs spinning around causing a circular depression of approx 15cm diameter in
the leaf litter.
19 Jan 2009 13.30 One BBBQ was observed spinning around for as long as I cared
to watch. Noisy 4WDs are driving past all day so the Quails must be very
habituated to disturbance. (Actually I also saw two BBBQs in the exact same
location one year previously in atrocious conditions of heavy rain.)
Came very close to running over a White-throated Nightjar sitting in the middle
of the track on the way down Cooloola Drive. About 3-4 Ground Parrots were
calling from the heathland between 04.30-04.45 when it was still dark. As soon
as it became light enough to actully see a parrot they all stopped. But if
anyone ever wanted to see a New Holland Honeyeater, this would be the place to
start looking. I then spent from 05.00-06.30 crashing about in the undergrowth
close to where the calls seemed to be coming from, achieving very little apart
from falling in wet concealed ditches from time to time. I did flush a Tawny
Grassbird and also a small dark Quail (King?)
Walking back along the road to the car whilst pondering my next move a
beautiful slender green/yellow parrot took off from the roadside and gracefully
flew 50 into the heath, never to be seen again.
Other birds seen at this location: Brown Quail, Pied Cormorant, Welcome
Swallow, White-throated Nightjar, Noisy Frairbird, New Holland Honeyeater,
Australasian Pipit, Red-browed Finch, Red-backed Fairy-wren, Grey
Shrike-thrush, Willie Wagtail, Tawny Grassbird, White-throated Needletail
Inskip Point is actually an excellent spot for birding. As well as a collection
of very tame bushbirds including a Satin Flycatcher along the walking track
there were also thousands of seabirds on the sand islands just off shore. In
between birding much amusement can also be had watching 4WDs get stuck in the
deep sand trying to reach the Fraser Island ferries.
I came to the same location in 2008 with the same objective of find the Quail
and the Parrot. In weather not fit for man nor beast I was very pleased to fing
a pair of Quail but Cooloola way was deep under water so I never reached the
parrot site. I'm not sure if these parrots can swim.
I was quite surprised by the large number of platelets beside the track. In
places there were more platelets than spare ground.Obviously the Quail are not
bothered by the traffic but a pair of Goannas observed at the same spot might
cause more of a problem. Just off shore was a large sand island which had
literally thousands of seabirds resting on it. They were slightly hard to pick
without a scope but there must have been huge numbers of Common Terns and
Crested Terns amongst the migratory waders. The beaches were quite popular with
Red-capped Plovers and I also managed to pick out one Sanderling amongst them.
A perfect day was capped off at the point watching the great flocks of terns
wheeling over the ocean in the sunset. Just to finish it off a pair of Indo
Pacific Humpback Dolphins swam past 10m off shore. One of them swam along for a
good 5 minutes with his head right out in the air, looking about and admiring
the scenery and sunset himself.
Other birds seen at this location: Bar-tailed Godwit, Red-capped Plover, Royal
Spoonbill, Pelican, Grey-tailed Tattler, Whimbrel, Curlew, Sanderling,
Red-necked Sting, Pied Oystercatcher, Caspian Tern, Common Tern, Crested Tern
Little Tern, Siver Gull, Pied Cormorant, Brahminy Kite, Brush Turkey, Fairy
Gerygone, Brown Thornbill, Rufous Whistler, Satin Flycatcher, Mangove
Honeyeater, Lewins Honeyeater, Whte-breasted Woodswallow, Bar Shouldered Dove,
Eastern Yellow Robin, Eastern Whipbird, Little Wattlebird, Varied Triller,
PO Box 208
Bungalow QLD 4870
Tel 0419 028 077 Fax 07 4051 4896
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