Cairns Trip Report - Great-billed heron Centenary Lakes

To: robert burgoyne <>
Subject: Cairns Trip Report - Great-billed heron Centenary Lakes
From: Keith & Lindsay Fisher <>
Date: Fri, 04 Nov 2011 06:51:27 +1000
Hi Rob,
GBH turn up at Centenary Lakes from time to time. I used to see up to 4 at a time (2 adults and 2 juveniles), when I was doing bird hazard management at Cairns Airport. The were usually along the Barron River and I suspect they were breeding in the mangroves between the river and the coastline. This area is only about 4km from Centenary Lakes which is not far as the bird flies. It's great that such a sought after bird can be found in such a suburban area.


Keith&  Lindsay Fisher
RN 6 Mount Kooyong Road,
Julatten, QLD 4871

    Keith&  Lindsay Fisher
    Kingfisher Park Birdwatchers Lodge
    RN 6 Mt. Kooyong Road
    Julatten QLD 4871
    Ph : (07) 4094 1263
    Web Site:

Winner: Wet Tropics 2010 Cassowary Award for Nature Based Tourism

On 3/11/2011 9:23 PM, robert burgoyne wrote:
The locals would probably know better, but I had GBH at Centenary Lakes in 
November 2009.  It was just on dusk and as it had started to rain I took cover 
in a shelter to put on wet weather gear when the bird landed some 10 metres 
away on the grass oblivious to my presence.   It was also the eastern most lake 
from memory and it acted similarly to your bird moving into the lake and as I 
walked towards the road fairly close to the bird (10 metres or less) and it did 
not fly (I have seen them in Darwin where I live and they take to the wing very 
quickly near human presence).

Cheers, Rob B

Message: 5
Date: Tue, 1 Nov 2011 16:18:05 +0800
From: John Graff<>
To: Birding-Aus<>
Subject: [Birding-Aus] Cairns trip report - 28-30 October
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"

Hi everyone,

Steve Burns, Alan Collins, Mark Newman and I have just returned from a lighting 
3 day trip to the Cairns area, organised by Mark. We flew out from Perth on 
Thursday night and stayed Friday and Saturday nights at Kingfisher Park, before 
returning to Perth late Sunday afternoon. Below is a brief report from the trip 
- as always, any comments are welcome. I don't think we had too many unusual 
sightings, although a Great-billed Heron showing well at Centenary Lakes may be 
a little unusual, and a local we met at the Esplanade suggested the Grey Plover 
there was also relatively uncommon. Below is a relatively long report on the 

Friday 28th
We arrived at about 4.15am and picked up our first birds in the airport 
carpark, including White-breasted Woodswallow. We then headed for the 
Esplanade, where we saw Pied Imperial Pigeon, Figbird, Metallic Starling, and 
House Sparrow, plus good numbers of waders on the mudflats (these were still a 
fair way out though, so we planned to return later). We then headed for 
Centenary Lakes. Our first (and probably best) sighting was a Great-billed 
Heron on the eastern most lake, initially on the grassy shore, then on some 
mangrove roots in the lake - I'm not sure how regularly these are seen here, 
but they can be very tricky to get onto so to get one so easily was great! We 
added a few more species like Orange-footed Scrubfowl, Yellow Oriole, 
Olive-backed Sunbird, Brown-backed and Dusky Honeyeaters, Australian Swiftlet, 
and more imperial pigeons overhead. We also saw a Black Bittern which flew over 
us near the walking bridge over the main saltwater creek, plus Striated Heron 

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