27 August 2016
Leaders: Hazel and Alan Veevers; Species count: 50
All photographs by Eleanor Dilley
Forty-six members set off from the Eastern Carpark in fine weather conditions to begin the walk around the lake. After entering the wildlife enclosure a few small birds were seen including Striated Pardalotes and Superb Fairy-wrens.
Grey Butcherbirds and Laughing Kookaburras were plentiful but Noisy Miners were very much the most numerous species.
At the lake there were only a few ducks but these included a Freckled Duck, an Australasian Shoveler and Chestnut and Grey Teals.
Of great interest were the birds nesting on a small treed island where there was much activity. Many Australian White Ibis were nesting at ground level, while higher up in the bare trees several pairs of Little Pied Cormorants, Great Cormorants and Australian Darters tended their nests. Sticks were still being brought in to build some nests, but many birds were clearly incubating eggs.
An Eastern Great Egret looked dazzling in its beautiful white breeding plumage contrasting with a few dirty-looking Ibis perched on the same log. On completing the lake circuit a short return walk was taken along the track towards Norton Park and a Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike and White-faced Heron were added to the morning tally.
Lunch was taken near the carpark, after which about half the group drove to the top of the hill where a second shorter walk was taken.
Highlights of this included a well camouflaged Tawny Frogmouth and great views of Musk Lorikeets in the flowering Ironbark trees.
Those at the rear of the group were fortunate to witness a Peregrine Falcon flying rapidly overhead – the only raptor spotted during the day. Eight Parrot species added a wonderful range of colours to the sightings, making up for the near zero contribution from the few Honeyeaters that were around.
A total of 50 species were recorded on a most interesting and enjoyable excursion.
See the bird list for the outing: BM Aug 2016 Bird List Jells Park