Warringal Swamp, Heidelberg, Vic.

Subject: Warringal Swamp, Heidelberg, Vic.
Date: Mon, 2 Feb 2009 13:26:00 +0800 (WST)
  As 2nd February is supposed to be World Wetland Day, I went to Banyule Flats 
Swamp in
Heidelberg to check its condition and see what birds were there.
  The maximum temperature has been over 30 degrees for about 8 days, including 
3 days
well over 40 degrees. Friday 30th was the second hottest day ever recorded in
Melbourne at 46.1 degrees (113 degrees Fahrenheit).
  It is not surprising that the Swamp's shallows have evaporated since Sat. 25 
leaving a wide area of exposed and drying mud. I spent over an hour at the 
seats on
the east side doing my best to count all species with binoculars and telescope.
Weather conditions were warm, muggy, cloudy and somewhat cooler today, and 
after a
couple of sunny breaks large clouds came up with some thunder and a 15 minute 
of light rain.

Aust. Wood Duck - 10
Pacific Black Duck - 30, plus another 12 which flew in during my observations.
Grey Teal - 2
Chestnut Teal -  9
Hardhead -  1
Australasian Grebe - 2 ad., 4 immature
White-faced Heron - 1
Nankeen Night-heron - 1 adult
Aust. White Ibis - 2 on dead tree, 2 feeding at north end, 2 at SW end. 4 flew 
   but did not visit.
Buff-banded Rail - 1 at eastern margin - disturbed, it scurried along the 
water's edge
  and disappeared in vegetation.
Purple Swamphen  - about 12 adults and 4 chicks (still black and fluffy). 
Probably more
were  present -   some hiding in water-ribbons.
Dusky Moorhens  - at least 6.  Very hard to count, hiding among Water Ribbons.
Eurasian Coots - at least 8, plus 2 or 3 chicks.  At least one chick was newly 
  Even more skulking than Swamphens and Moorhens.
Latham's Snipe - 13 - easily seen in shallows and on wet mud.
Black-winged Stilt - 6 or 7
Black-fronted Dotterel - 1 - on dry mud
Masked Lapwing - about 10
Silver Gull - 2
Spotted Turtle-dove  1 on dead tree
Red-rumped Parrot - 3 came to drink
Magpie-lark  1
Australian Magpie - 5
Welcome Swallows  4
Common Starlings - large flocks feeding on mud
Common Mynah  4

Other species, seen or heard in the vicinity but not actually at the Swamp, 
   Common Bronzewing 1
   Crested Pigeons - 2 picking grit on path
   Little Corellas
   Sulphur-crested Cockatoos
   Superb Blue Wrens
   Brown Thornbills
   Little Ravens

I do not insist on the accuracy of these figures. There is still plenty of 
cover among
the water-ribbon growth and some birds were obscured by hummocks and tussocks 
in the
Anthea Fleming


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