Saturday, 23 May 2020

WINTER BIRDING IN AUTUMN

Dusky Woodswallows were feeling the cold too and knotted themselves into this impressive intimacy.
It is only May but it was freezing! And everytime we left the car we cursed ourselves for dressing like Queenslanders.

Apart from underestimating the winter winds though we had a great day with some great birds and mammals.

Speckled Warbler
Australian Birding Safaris is effectively on hold until 2021 but we are keen to use this time to ensure our group birding tours will involve one great day after another. Please consider joining one of our Brisbane Birding Breaks; set to kick off after Easter in 2021. And so we drove from Kilcoy to Murgon birding on the way. The weather was cold and the sky was grey; sucking the colour of the birds and vegetation. Peach Trees, one of our planned stops, was closed; another casualty of corona closures.


Now, despite those issues, if one was to judge the day by the quality of the birds seen, one would conclude it was an exceptional day.

young Brown Treecreeper
Our first major stop was Yabba Road in the Jimna Range. We were seeing great birds before we left the car; two family groups of Speckled Warblers plus Brown Treecreepers foraging on the road itself. Flocks of Fuscous Honeyeaters flashed around as Yellow tufted and faced Honeyeaters foraged above. Jacky Winters were there too as were a nice pair of Crested Shrike tits. Little Lorikeets were inconspicuous in the tree tops.
Crested Shrike Tit

Soon though the cold sent is back to the cab of the car for coffee...

Further along we stopped again for a brief viewing. Weebills, Striated and Yellow Thornbills showed with an active Grey Fantail in attendance.
Jacky Winter

Driving vaguely north we encountered a couple of groups of White winged Choughs. And then we stopped for an overdue lunch at Kinbombi Falls. [Kinbombi, according to a google search, is derived from words from the Kabi Kabi language and means a fight with an Aboriginal woman.] The Road, falls and dam in this area which take the name got it second hand from a railway station on the Gympie Nanango line. The station was named in 1902.

Anyway back to the falls. The forest above the falls held Weebill, Buff rumped Thornbills, Restless Flycatcher, White throated Gerygone, Shining Bronze Cuckoo among others. I was impressed and surprised to find a couple of Herbert's Rock Wallabies in the gorge. Mammal of the day as far as i am concerned. These animals must be on the southern limit of their range.
Herbert's Rock Wallaby
Herbert's Rock Wallaby

The Kinbombi Dam was full after Summer rains and the bird count was down from my last visit but there was a few Grey Teal and Australasian Grebe. Galahs, Crested Pigeons, Pale headed Rosellas completed a nice rural Australian scene. As did a large Koala perched in a nearby Gum tree...
old mate Koala.

Driving into the polite town of Murgon we scored some nice views of Red tailed Black Cockatoos.
male Red tailed Black Cockatoos gracing a Murgon median strip

Left handed female Red tailed Black Cockatoo

all pics by Ken Cross and Steve Grainger

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