Round Hill Question

To: 'Jenny Stiles' <>, "" <>
Subject: Round Hill Question
From: "Carl Weber " <>
Date: Mon, 12 Sep 2016 15:52:51 +0000
Hi Jenny,

I do not know exactly what "open" means, but understand that at times the
vehicular trails can be closed due to heavy rain. I would expect that
pedestrian access is OK at these times. Also, access may be limited when fox
baits are set. In times of bushfire danger, any Park or Reserve in NSW can
be closed to public access, and this would include Round Hill (Whoey Tank)
and Nombinnie (Wheat Paddock).

Camping is allowed at Whoey Tank. In the past, some groups have sought
formal permission to camp there, but I do not know whether this is
compulsory. Camping is not allowed in or around the Wheat Paddock, and I
suspect that this includes all of Nombinnie.

In general, I don't contact the Cobar office prior to visits. NPWS staff
that I have encountered on site over a period of 10 years have shown no
displeasure at my presence and have never questioned me as to whether or not
I have sought permission to be there.

If you have a large group, it may be prudent to ring NPWS at Cobar to advise
them of your intentions, particularly if you are going there in a Long
Weekend Holiday period.

Best wishes,

Carl Weber

-----Original Message-----
From: Jenny Stiles 
Sent: Monday, 12 September 2016 7:50 PM
To: ; 
Subject: Round Hill Question

Hi Carl & list,
I notice in my bird books that "Round Hill Nature Reserve" is not always
"open" and that we should phone Cobar office of National Parks and Wildlife.

Is this step necessary? What does it mean if it is not open?

>From Jenny Stiles

-----Original Message-----
From: Carl Weber
Sent: Friday, September 09, 2016 2:12 PM
Subject: Trip Report Round Hill - Lake Cargelligo August 26-28

Hi All,

I drove from Sydney on Thursday 26th, had lunch at Gum Swamp, Forbes, and
started birding at Whoey Tank, Round Hill at 2 pm. The countryside
everywhere is as green as I've seen - like Europe or New Zealand. Surface
water is plentiful and dams and lakes are full. The weather was cold, but
mostly sunny. I was happy to see anything, but particularly wanted
black-eared cuckoo. I stayed 3 nights in Lake Cargelligo, and finished at
10.30 am on 28th August. I returned to Sydney via Temora.

Whoey Tank

I visited Whoey Tank once. The area was a little quiet, the was abundant
ground cover, and the tank and surrounding feeder channels had water in
them.  Mulga Parrot and Mallee Ringneck were there, with Singing, Striped,
Spiny-cheeked and White-fronted Honeyeater. Highlights were a Horsfield's
Bronze-cuckoo and the antics of a calling (?complaining) White-fronted

Chat Alley

In all, I visited Chat Alley 5 times, staying for up to 30 minutes or so on
my way to and from Lake Cargelligo. There is so much water there that it
could called Chat Lakes: The eastern end is a lake about 100 m long and up
to 50 m wide. There a larger lake at the western end of the tar-sealed road.

Birds included a pair of Australasian Shoveler, a pair of Pink-eared Duck,
Grey Teal, Hardhead, Red-kneed Dotterel, Yellow-billed Spoonbill,
White-necked Heron, Black-winged stilt, and an Australian Spotted Crake. The
highlight was a Pair of Orange Chat, which showed well on 3 of the 5 visits.
The only raptor seen was a  Nankeen Kestrel.

Lake Cargelligo STW

I visited the ponds on 2 late afternoons. The ponds themselves, although
full, were almost devoid of birds. The first two ponds were covered in
algae, which is probably a deterrent. In all, the ponds held a few Black
Swan, Hardhead, and Grey Teal. A pair of Whistling Kite were perched on a
dead tree. However there were highlights: a male Musk Duck on one of the
smaller ponds, and an Eastern Barn Owl which I flushed from the pond bank,
and which settled in a bush about 4 m from me, staring balefully. A
Back-fronted Dotterel was also present.

The paddock immediately to the north is flooded to form a wetland 300 m long
and up to 50 m wide.  Here were White-necked Heron, Black-winged stilt,
Australian Shelduck, and a pair of  Black Swan with 5 cygnets, Red-kneed
Dotterel, and White-winged Fairy-wren.

The Wheat Paddock

One morning at the Wheat Paddock yielded most of the usual mallee birds,
notably White-fronted and Grey-fronted Honeyeater, Shy Heathwren, Western
Gerygone, White-browed and Grey-crowned Babbler and Southern Scrub-robin.
The only whistler seen was a Rufous.

Southern Boundary

I did a circuit starting on the main road at the SE corner, west along the
southern boundary, then north on the Wild Goat Trail to the Railway line,
east to the main road and south to the starting point. This yielded notables
including Splendid Fairy-wren ((2 families with breeding males), Weebill,
and Crested Bellbird. The lowlight was an immature Horsfield's
Bronze-cuckoo, which for an hour or so I had listed as my first Black-eared
Cuckoo. The bird had a beautiful black ear mark, but it eventually dawned on
me that a striped chest, even if very faint, was a bad sign. In the end, I
neither saw nor heard a Black-eared Cuckoo on the trip.

Red-lored Whistler

I heard Red-lored Whistler on 4 occasions, but saw none, despite following
calls through mallee. The first two occasions were to the north and west of
the Wheat Paddock. It is possible that there was just one bird that moved,
but on balance I believe that the calls came from two birds. The third
occasion was on the Southern Boundary, and the fourth was in mallee about 1
km away. These two could be from the one bird. The calls were all heard on
sunny mornings; there were no calls on the two days with cloud cover.

Gilbert's Whistler was neither seen nor heard at any time. Presumably they
have yet to arrive.

Carl Weber


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