Following my post on a probable Spotted Bowerbird's bower close to the
Murray, I have had a number of useful responses with information on recent
sightings..all of which appear to be on the NSW side of the border, unless
someone out there would like to correct that.
I have quizzed my daughter Rosie again. She still says it was a bower.
Interestingly she said that some of the items decorating it were in the
grasses that formed its walls. In Hanzab it states this as being true for
Spotted Bowerbirds. She mentioned some blue items. Hanzab does not list
blue as a favourite colour, however there are some records of blue items in
their bowers. I asked her about the other items and what colour they were,
but she didn't really study it that much, and just noticed the blue things
as they stood out. She said it was made of grass stalks.
It seems that the boat was moored at Km 918 on the Murray, which puts it in
the Karadoc area. From the info she was able to give me I doubt I'd ever be
able to find it again. She was happy to see it when she did, but didn't
realize that it was so significant.
As for other recent records close to the border ( ie in the last 20 years or
so), the sightings I have heard about are spread from Euston to Balranald to
Kyalite to Moulamein. This is all largely "station country" and there are
some nice areas of habitat including Belah woodland which sounds like it is
the preferred habitat, plus plenty of riverine forests of course. They are
clearly also attracted to Station homesteads particularly where there are
old fruit trees such as Mulberries. I'm sure that the quickest and easiest
way to find out their current status would be to do a survey of all the
station owners, as I imagine they would be known to them. It seems they are
still hanging on, but don't seem to be at all common.
I have only been through these areas a handful of times, but each time I do
I think to myself that I really should spend some more time exploring the
area. It is some of the closest station country to Melbourne, and I'm sure
holds many surprises. Recently I saw Pink Cockatoos (west of Moulamein) and
Regent Parrots (near Kyalite). Also I was taken to a Spotted Bowerbirds
bower north-west of Moulamein some years ago.
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