On our brief trip to from Maleny,Qld to Tuncurry NSW (Feb 11 to 16) along the
coast we achieved our goal of seeing lots of wetlands. Unfortunately, most were
seen from the car, had few birds, and would normally have been called paddocks.
In truth we did very little birding because of the consistent rain.
First stop was the Byron Bay lighthouse where, with Steve , we searched for
the Artic Tern seen by Phil Gregory on Ist Feb. The only terns seen were
Crested, some distance away amongst the Short-tailed Shearwaters, there were
none around rocks below the lighthouse. We did get great views of large rays,
sharks, and turtles close-in to the rocks.
Paid a brief visit to Flat Rock before Ballina which produced
Crested,Common & Little Terns, Reef Egret, Ruddy Turnstone, Red-necked Stint,
Soooty Oystercatcher amongst others.
Next day caught-up with Ken Shingleton at South-West Rocks and tried for
the Lesser Yellowlegs at Jerseyville. Ken hadn't seen it for a few days and was
concerned when we couldn't locate any of the accompanying Marsh Sandpipers at
the hide. Dodging cattle and showers we then trudged through wet grass and
reeds along various branches of the channel, searching-out sites previously
used by the Yellowlegs, without success. Ken fears it has now departed
following the heavy rains received .
We had made a brief morning-tea stop at Red Rock (about 35km north of Coffs
Harbour) where we got excellent views of a Square-tailed Kite flying low and
slow over a patch of banksia heath. The estuary there contained Pied
Oystercatchers, cormorants, and a few Eastern Curlew.
Rain and relatives then intervened until we were heading homewards.We paid
a brief stop at the Bagotville Barrage late in the day to find Black Swan,
Great Egret, Jacana, but nothing exceptional. Monday morning was bright and
sunny so we took the punt across to Mobbs Bay and South Ballina Beach. Saw an
Osprey slowly tearing small pieces from a whiting, mouth first and then a total
of 12 Brown Quail (incl. 3 chicks with both parents) along a 400m stretch of
the gravel road, over a 5 minute period. Nothing but a few Silver Gull on the
On to Lismore where we visited both STW sites and Lismore Lake. The Three
Chain Rd site had Latham's Snipe, a perched Channel-billed Cuckoo, Plumed
Whistling Duck, Black-fronted Dotterel along with the corms and Cattle Egret.
The Lake also had snipe, dotterel, and Royal Spoonbill. Towards Casino we found
McMahons Lagoon where we added Aust Shoveller,but by now the rain had returned
and we admitted defeat.
All-up we got 96 species over the six days, not a bad total given total
birding time was limited, and we had confined ourselves to wetlands, beaches
(We utilised bird route brochures for the Ballina, Lismore & Coffs Harbour
along with specific info from June Harris and Steve McBride)
Russ Lamb, Maleny,SEQ
To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)