Last Friday evening Tony Keene, Ed Williams and myself set out from Melbourne
on a trip to
Gluepot, mainly to catch the Scarlet-chested Parrots while we could.
Not much to report from the Friday: a late start meant the best we could manage
number of Barn Owls spotted along the road between Bendigo and Mildura. We
stopped off at
Renmark overnight before an early start for the run on to Gluepot.
Highlights of the trip in included a large group of Whistling Kites over the
Pyap, some Blue Bonnets near Moorook, and what appeared to be a lone
round alongside the ferry ramp at Waikerie (I'm sure it's clan were around
It was a slow drive in to Gluepot through the Taylorville Station: we kept
stopping to see
the birds! Before long we had seen Chestnut-crowned Babbler, Restless
Flycatcher, good views
of a pair of Crested Bellbird, small flocks of Budgerigar (abundant around
Gluepot at the
moment), Southern Whiteface and Southern Scrub-robin. I was last at Gluepot
three years ago,
and the change in bird abundance since the drought has broken was very
Close attention to Yellow-throated Miner flocks had resulted in two very good
Black-eared Miner. A subsequent review of Tony's photos has satisfied us they
Add to this Woodswallows everywhere along the road: mostly Masked, with a few
thrown in for good measure, a nice Brown Goshawk, 'Mallee' Ringneck Parrots,
Brown-headed and Yellow-plumed Honeyeater and the trip was off to a good start.
Eventually we made it to Gluepot, and up to the visitor centre first to sign in
returning to the Gypsum-Lunette walk to scout for the SCP. Within a hundred
metres of so of
the car park, and while Tony and I were distracted by a Variegated Fairy-wren
and a Hooded
Robin, Ed picked up a male SCP near the top of a tree. RESULT! We were treated
views of this amazing parrot until it was chased out of sight by a pair of
Mulga Parrots. We
carried on bashing round the walk through the Spinifex but didn't pick up many
Some White-winged Trillers, a Snow Bunting (okay, not really a snow bunting -
clarified the small rufous and white thing I nearly stood on was actually a
Button-Quail), Gilberts Whistler (heard), and good numbers of Yellow-Plumed
walk finished off with nice views of three Varied Sitella (black capped
building. After that we appropriately set up our tent at the Sitella campsite
for the night.
The evenings spotlighting was curtailed by battery issues - we saw lots of bats
torchlight lasted, but were only able to hear Spotted Nightjar, Southern
Boobook and an
Owlet Nightjar that seemed to be flying just above the tent at times!
The next morning (Sunday the 13th ) the campsite had a small mixed flock of
Chestnut-rumped Thornbill moving through, which distracted us from the big
emerged from under where the tent had been.
A brief rain shower made us shuffle our plans slightly, and we headed out to
centre to sign out of the reserve before going back to the Gypsum-Lunette walk.
the detour: we picked up a very nice Gilberts Whistler and a pair of relatively
Chestnut Quail-thrush alongside the road. We stopped at Kangaroo Dam where
there was a flock
of 15 Black-tailed Native Hen, a couple of Grey Teal and a Hoary-headed Grebe,
usual Gluepot birds!
Sadly no more SCP sightings for us at Gypsum-Lunette, but the second walk
around the loop
bagged us sighting of Red-lored and Gilberts Whistler, Black Honeyeater and a
Owlet-nightjar that obligingly sat in a tree branch for us. Bacon sarnies all
hitting the road back south....northern Victoria report to follow!
[Other Taylorville Station / Gluepot birds seen not mentioned above: Australian
Australian Raven, Brown Falcon, Brown Treecreeper, Common Bronzewing, Crested
Grey Butcherbird, Grey Currawong, Jacky Winter, Nankeen Kestrel, Red-capped
Fairy-wren, Striated Pardalote, Tree Martin, Welcome Swallow, White-browed
White-winged Chough, Willie Wagtail, Yellow-rumped Thornbill, Whistling Kite,
Wattlebird, Rufous Whistler and Grey Shrike-thrush]
Tony Keene, Ed Williams, Mike Honeyman
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