Carpentaria Grasswrens

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Subject: Carpentaria Grasswrens
From: Dominic Chaplin <>
Date: Tue, 9 Dec 2014 21:04:53 +1000
spent a very productive morning out on McNamara Rd near Mt Isa last week, Dec
Up to 6 Carpentaria Grasswrens were seen.

was raining out in Mt Isa and the district was looking quite green with water
everywhere and grass growing. The gullies around the stone cairn at km 8 were
all full. The spinifex was looking green, healthy and getting quite dense. Fire
severely damaged this area in 2012 and grasswrens had become difficult to
locate throughout the North West.

Road is still incredibly busy with road trains, mining vehicles, road graders
etc passing all the time. I was prepared for a long hot day trudging about and
seeing nothing. So no one was more startled than me to see a Carpentaria 
singing his heart out, right next to the road, from the car window, before I
had even got there. This was about 200m before the cairn

A new stone cairn has been constructed on the Eastern side of the road, by the 
turn off at the 8km mark. This is the 3rd cairn, the
two others being destroyed as road graders widen the road, now about 65m wide
here. There is new notebook inside the cairn. Please record your findings
in the notebook to help future birders and maintain records at this site.
I explored about 1.5km down the side road from
09.30-12.30 seeing 2 more pairs of CGWs and another single bird including one
very perky individual photographed. He was moderately easy to approach, even
going up a couple of meters into small trees to sing.

is hard to know if I saw the same birds twice as they are incredibly fast and
mobile but there were definitely 4 separate animals and probably up to 6. 
these Grasswrens are now bouncing back.

other local rarity of note was a Freckled Duck at the Mt Isa Water Treatment
Plant – Rare in the district.

Dominic Chaplin                                           
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