28 July 2018
Leaders: Hazel and Alan Veevers; Species Count: 49
Thirty-one members gathered by the lake in perfect weather for bird-watching – sunshine and very little wind. Water birds were plentiful with many Eurasian Coots, Purple Swamphens, Dusky Moorhens, and lots of Australasian Darters.
Unfortunately the wetlands boardwalk was closed for repair, but from the track around the outside of it there were good views of Little Pied and Little Black Cormorants as well as a pair of Pink-eared Ducks.
On some rocks alongside the lake, a young Darter was wrestling with a huge fish, desperately trying to manipulate it into a swallowing position.
Two Whistling Kites circling overhead provided close-up views for the beginners but were the only raptors seen all day.
It was pleasing to see family groups of Superb Fairy-wrens in many different locations on the route away from the lake towards Hull Road wetlands. Despite everyone’s best efforts, none of the expected Tawny Frogmouths could be found in that area.
However, Golden Whistler, Grey Shrike-thrush, King Parrots, Rainbow Lorikeets, Eastern Spinebills, as well as White-plumed and New Holland Honeyeaters, were seen.
The Hull Road Wetlands contained plenty of water but very few birds, though an Eastern Yellow Robin and Crimson Rosellas were spotted in the surrounding trees.
Both Grey and Chestnut Teal were also found but only two and four, respectively, of each species. Returning to the carpark, two White-faced Herons were feeding in a small pond.
After lunch a short walk was taken beside the lake. A lone Masked Lapwing stood on the beach, seemingly minding its own business as we walked by.
Members stood for a while on a look-out platform enjoying the sight of an Australasian Darter swimming and diving for fish, clearly demonstrating how it got the nickname “snake bird”. A Grey Butcherbird, perched obligingly close to the group, gave the photographers an ideal opportunity for a photo.
Heading back over the hill members paused to admire the distant view towards the Dandenong Ranges before returning to the car park. A very pleasant outing ended with a tally of 49 species.
View the complete bird list for the day: BM Jul 2018 Bird List Lillydale Lake