Spent two days late last week doing some gentle birding in the South Burnett
region of SEQ.Purpose of the trip was to try to locate one of my bogey-birds,
Red-chested Button-Quail, seen by a fellow Sunshine Coast birder in the Murgon
area back in July. Needless to say,we saw no quail of any sort and the RCBQ
remains a b-b. But we did have fun exploring new (for us) areas relatively
close to home.
Spot of the trip was the Gordonbrook Dam, 8km west of the Bunya Highway,
between Kingaroy and Wondai.Heaps of waterbirds easily seen, and an easy walk
along the water's edge. We saw 40 species incl. several pairs of Cotton
Pygmy-geese, Glossy Ibis, both spoonbills, White-necked Heron but couldn't
locate any crakes or rails, despite the very suitable habitat. The
Bjelke-Petersen Dam south of Murgon is less bird friendly,but we still managed
27 species with more Glossy Ibis and both Whiskered and Caspian Tern. Hardhead
were the most prolific duck on both dams with cormorant numbers quite low.
We visited both the Nanango and Kingaroy STW's where reasonable views can
be got through the wire fences. Nanango had a sole Magpie Goose and
Black-fronted Dotterel amongst its 17 species whilst the Kingaroy STW had
nothing remarkable amongst its 20, all standard sewerage treatment species.
We stayed o'nite in a very comfortable cabin overlooking a farm dam on a
property along Redgate Rd, about 6km SE of Murgon. The owners have grown a
wonderful bird-attracting garden which, along with their dam, gave us 44
species before breakfast. Highlight of the stay (and the trip) was a pair of
Ground Cuckoo-shrike which flew into the paddock giving great views. All the
common waterbirds were present on and around the dam, and the gardens produced
both Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbill, Olive-backed Oriole, Little Friarbird,
I had two attempts totaling 5 hrs searching for the button-quail in dry
woodland on private property along Barambah Rd. No luck, and old platlets don't
count (Painted BQ have also been seen there).I did see heaps of Common
Bronzewing, as well asYellow and Buff-rumped Thornbill,Weebill, both Brown and
White-throated Treecreeper,Sacred Kingfisher,Sitella and Leaden Flycatcher.
A low number of raptor species with Kestrel and Black-shouldered Kite most
common, and Whistling Kite and White-bellied Sea-eagle over the dams. Weirdly,
we didn't hear or see either Rufous or Golden Whistler at any point.All-up our
tally for the two days was 87 species with a couple of additions to the year
list. Easy birding in a nice part of SEQ.
Russ Lamb, Maleny,SEQ
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