Monday, 8 September 2008

6th September Report

With the warmer weather of the last week some of the reptiles have started to re-appear. Several sightings of Boyd's Forest Dragon, Major Skink and a tree snake.

Boyd's Forest Dragon

Most of our Lewin's Honeyeaters have left, either heading back up the hills behind us or further south across the Atherton Tablelands. The adult Metallic Starlings have been back from Papua New Guinea since 11th August and immediately set about building their communal nests in the nearby park. The numbers are still building up and they are regular visitors to our bird baths.

Several Red-winged Parrots visited for a morning before heading back to the drier woodlands, very uncommon visitors for us.

An Australian Owlet-nightjar was calling at 9am and spotted looking out of it's roost hollow.

Australian Owlet Nightjar

A pair of Nankeen Kestrel have also set up a nest and have been seen during the week harassing the nearby Metallic Starlings. The resident (Lesser) Sooty Owl was seen for the 2nd time this year calling from high up in one of the tall rainforest trees. There appears to be only a single bird as we have only heard one calling in the evening and early morning before it goes to roost. The two pairs of Masked Owls in the area have five young between them and have been busy trying to feed them. We have been collecting pellets and will get them analysed - previous years they have been eating Bush Rat, Cane Field Rat and the occasional small Long-nosed Bandicoot.

The resident Platypus in Bushy Creek have been seen early in the morning just before dawn and also spotlighted in the evening once. Other mammals seen during the week were an adult Striped Possum and juvenile in tow feeding on a South American Sapote tree, Northern Blossom Bat, Spectacled Flying-Fox, Northern Brown and Long-nosed Bandicoot, Bush and Cane Field Rat and Feather-tail Glider in a coconut palm.

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