Beginners outing to Braeside Park

26 April 2014, species count 60, Leaders: Hazel and Alan Veevers

A pair of Tawny Frogmouths watched as 39 members gathered in the Cockatoo car park on a cool autumn morning. Walking down the main track towards the Park Office we admired the new Cypress-stump carving of Pelicans as a flock of real ones glided overhead. Grey Butcherbird, Eastern Rosella, Red-rumped Parrot, Crested Pigeon and Straw-necked Ibis were all seen before we reached the bird hide, which provided a welcome shelter from a spell of wind and rain. Not much to see from there, but we were amply rewarded by walking a clockwise circuit of the wetlands. In addition to a plentiful supply of the more common duck and water-bird species, we had good sightings of Australasian Shoveler, Hardhead, Black-fronted Dotterel, Black-winged Stilt, Eastern Great Egret and both Royal and Yellow-billed Spoonbills. Three female Blue-billed Ducks were well-spotted mingling with a large group of Coots. An immature White-necked Heron and several Flame Robins were found in the paddocks at the end of the circuit.

After lunch, a short walk into the Banksia heathland produced a few more bush birds, including Golden Whistler and Spotted Pardalote, which brought the tally to 60 species. Despite the inclement weather, it had been a very satisfying and productive day’s birding.

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