Balyang continues its surprises

To: Birding Aus <>
Subject: Balyang continues its surprises
From: Russ <>
Date: Sat, 23 Mar 2013 00:55:30 +1100
I write a couple of weeks ago about a lone Pink-eared Duck at Balyang
Sanctuary, beside the Barwon River in Geelong. The bird was there for a few
days after I saw it  - I read reports from other observers. It was gone
today, and in its place was a lone Australian Wood (Maned) Duck. Nothing
unusual about that, as this species turns up on any body of water bigger
than a bathtub, though I haven't seen many lone birds. Perhaps it is a
refugee from one of the nearby wetlands where duck hunting is permitted
again this year?

Anyway, today's surprise was a single Cattle Egret. This species can appear
almost anywhere in our region, though usually on grazing land or pasture. I
haven't seen one before at Balyang, though it's reporting rate on Eremaea
is 14% for this site. There was a single Great Egret there today as well -
it has become a fixture lately. Both Spoonbill species were present. Quite
often there is either one or the other, but that's probably not unusual
because there are normally fewer than a dozen birds.

It was good to see a juvenile Collared Sparrowhawk just as I was leaving. A
good day for birds of prey: there was a Black Falcon low over the Ring Road
this morning, and a pair of Wedge-tailed eagles about a kilometer later.

Russell Woodford

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