Trip Report: Mt Isa, Lawn Hill & Bladensburg (Long)

To: "birding-aus (E-mail)" <>, "" <>
Subject: Trip Report: Mt Isa, Lawn Hill & Bladensburg (Long)
From: Peter Morgan <>
Date: Mon, 4 Jun 2012 22:58:40 +1000
Martin said::
""I have been wondering for quite some time what everyone thinks about the 
distinctive race 'rowleyi' Striated Grasswren preferred habitat is - in my 
experience with this race, I've only found them on SAND-PLAIN spinifex in 
Bladensburg NP & in the general Opalton area, NOT on rocky ground with 
spinifex. BUT  I noticed the other day that on Tim Faulkner's trip recently to 
Opalton area that there is an image showing the bird inhabiting spinifex on 
ROCKY ground !! This is something that I didn't know about. It seems maybe this 
race is more of a generalist & inhabits sandy & rocky ground. Does anyone care 
to share their experiences of this race so far as habitat preference is 
concerned...?? Is Graeme Chapman out there to comment?? Cheers for now, Martin 

My wife, Bev, and I saw the Striated Grasswren on the top of a rocky hill just 
past Opalton last year.  It seemed to be the place that had been described on 
Eremaea (I think).  Two were in clear view as they bounded across a rocky ledge 
with not much spinifex on it.  A short time after, we saw another getting 
about, still on the ledge, but in a larger clump of spinifex.  We could not be 
sure it was a third, but it think it was.  That was about 1pm.
Later, Bev heard some down on the flat at road level (you have to be there to 
appreciate her hearing!), and after a while, we did see two others where she 
was hearing them from.  That was about 3.30pm.

We also picked up the Kalkadoon at Mica Creek and the Carpentarian on 
Macnamara's Rd from Mt Isa.  Each of those were between midday and 1pm.

We rang Rob Forsythe to talk about our sightings at Mt Isa, and he said he only 
ever saw the grasswrens in the middle of the day, not before 10 o'clock.  We 
had spent many early mornings, at Bladensburg, taking our breakfast out to 
catch (not literally) the Striated early in the morning, working on the basis 
that birds go quiet in the heat of the day.  When we got it on a return trip, 
the first sighting seemed to confirm Rob's advice.  
Wonder what other people have found on the best time to see grasswrens?

Peter and Bev Morgan

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