Sunday, 12 October 2008

12th October Report

A dry and hot week with a few threatening clouds but nothing in the way of rain. A total of 77 bird species were seen and a further 5 heard, 15 mammal and reptile species were seen.

Good and bad news this week, good news that the Red-necked Crake has re-appeared at the crake pool and seen twice during the week. This is the first time since about last May the crake has been seen although we have heard them calling since then but they have been staying out of sight.

Red-necked Crake

The bad news is that another Masked Owl was found at the side of the Rex Highway with a broken neck - measurements confirmed its identity. There are still a few Masked Owls left in the area as we have seen two coming out of a day time roost and heard at least one more calling.

The Sooty Owl is calling but has still not been seen during the last week. Good sightings during the week were a Bower’s Shrike-thrush calling near the crake pond, a Bridled Honeyeater foraging on blossom in a Eucalyptus cadagi and first sighting for the year of a Satin Flycatcher foraging beside the office.

The nesting season is in full swing now with Spotted Catbird having at least one recently fledged young seen begging for food, a pair of Pacific Baza carrying sticks, two Azure Kingfisher seen carrying food along Bushy Creek, a Pale-yellow Robin building a nest in a broken branch which is only held up by a few hanging vines – hope it survives and a Large-billed Scrubwren with a nest 0.5m off the ground in a wait-a-while vine.

The expected mammals appeared with still no sightings of Green-ringtail or Striped Possum, reptiles were more exciting with Boyd’s Forest Dragon, Eastern Water Monitor, Spotted Tree Monitor and Leaf-tail Gecko.

Further a field a Red-browed Pardalote was seen at Mt. Carbine Dam – very unusual here, displaying Australian Bustards were at Maryfarms, Blue-faced Parrot-Finches have not been seen and presumably are on their way up to Mt. Lewis where they usually appear early November.

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