Monday, August 19, 2013

Birding at Cooroora Creek Park at Pomona

Last weekend as I was making my way to the dam I could hear the ducks calling out using the warning call but they didn't seem to be trying to hide. This is usually how they sound when a goshawk is around but they were reacting very differently. As I got a little closer I could see a massive eagle hovering above the dam looking at the ducks. It was attempting to get them but they were much too quick for this juvenile White-bellied Sea-Eagle. It wasn't approachable at all. When I got about 80metres from it, it flew off and landed in a tree. I managed to get a few quick pics before it flew off again. As it flew off another White-bellied Sea-Eagle flew from out of a dead tree in the paddock and they flew off together.

Juvenile White-bellied Sea-Eagle

On Saturday I met a friend at the park at Pomona. I was hoping to see the Eastern Shrike-tit that she spotted here during the week. I knew that even if I didn't see it I would find many other birds as birds are always very active in here. I arrived at about 8 o'clock and it was a fresh morning but warming up nicely with not a cloud in the sky. As soon as we arrived we saw and heard Restless Flycatchers, Spectacled Monarchs, Noisy Friarbirds, Eastern Yellow Robins and several others. We made our way to a couple of baby Eastern Yellow Robins that my friend spotted earlier in the week. We managed to find them but were unable to get a photo due to them being in such dense foliage. It was nice to watch the parents feeding them nonetheless.

Noisy Friarbird

As usual the Brown Gerygones and Brown Thornbills were in large numbers. Unfortunately for me, the Brown Thornbills chased the Brown Gerygones away before we were able to get any decent shots of them.

Brown Thornbill

There were heaps of Golden Whistlers around the park too. A couple showed very well lower in the trees so we were able to obtain a few decent shots. These are one of my favourite birds due to their colour and their lovely song.

Golden Whistler

Another Golden Whistler

Golden Whistler taking off

The same Golden Whistler again

This Golden Whistler found a caterpillar for breakfast

Another species which is always in large numbers and easy to spot in the park are the White-browed Scrubwrens. This one was quite annoyed with me for some reason and landed very close to me, which allowed me to get a few great photos.

White-browed Scrubwren

This White-browed Scrubwren was making its alarm call

The White-browed Scrubwren after he settled down again

Other birds that were seen in large numbers were Laughing Kookaburras and Grey Fantails. Several Rufous Fantails were also spotted but I was running short on time so I had to leave before I was able to obtain a photo. I didn't get to see the Eastern Shrike-tit but I was happy with the quality of many of the shots that I obtained from today.

Early Sunday morning I did a very quick walk around the yard before I left to go out for the day and I was happy with the birds that I saw and heard within the 20 minutes in such a small area. Apart from the birds photographed I also spotted several Laughing Kookaburras, Magpie-larks, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrikes, Pied Currawongs, White-throated  Honeyeaters, Grey Fantails, Willie Wagtails, Brown Honeyeaters plus many others. I focussed on a couple of birds though to obtain photos of.

As always the flycatchers were as high as possible in the tallest trees around the yard. I could see them and hear them easily but was unable to get better photos than these due to their location.

Male Leaden Flycatcher

Female Leaden Flycatcher

Spectacled Monarch

Another one of my favourite birds that are always seen around my property are the Variegated Fairy-wrens. I never get tired of seeing and hearing them around the place.

Variegated Fairy-wrens
More updates and pics coming soon.
If you're interested in my blog check out my site below by clicking on the link.

Australian Birds Photography: KEUNEA PHOTOGRAPHY 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Jimna Area and Sterling's Crossing Again

Last weekend I went out near Jimna to pick up a few things. I decided to come home over the Conondale Range which comes out at Charlie Moreland campground. This is a beautiful and relaxing drive. The scenery is spectacular. The only down side is that there are few places where you can actually park the car to be able to take a photo or to get out and walk. The road is quite narrow, very hilly, quite wet in places but it is in very good condition. The few places where you can easily park the car are in the drier sections of the park.

Just before we went into the Conondale National Park we spotted a Brown Goshawk in the tree. Photos were difficult to get due to the position of the sun but I managed to get a couple. Only a few kilometres down the road we spotted a Grey Goshawk roosting in a tree just beside the road but before I took a photo it was gone. I saw many other birds along the drive which included Variegated Fairy-wrens, Large-billed Scrubwrens, White-browed Scrubwrens, Crimson Rosellas, Sulphur-crested Cockatoos, Grey Shrike-thrushes, Laughing Kookaburras, Restless Flycatchers, Pale-headed Rosellas and Olive-backed Orioles which I have never seen on the coast before and another bird that I saw was a Satin Bowerbird which I haven't seen on the Sunshine Coast before either. I know they are found here but I have never located one until last weekend.

I didn't get out to get many photos on the later part of the journey near Charlie Moreland as I was starting to develop a headache and we had to get home to meet someone.

Brown Goshawk

The Brown Goshawk in the distance

This little White-browed Scrubwren was in the grounds of the education centre on this road flicking all the leaves with his head. He was very approachable and even more entertaining to watch.

White-browed Scrubwren

Today I went back to Sterling's Crossing for a look. I arrived quite a bit later than last week. The weather was much colder than last week but it was a perfectly clear and sunny day. I had gone all the way down to where I had parked the car the previous week and I had hardly seen a bird. Laughing Kookaburras were in huge numbers. As soon as I pulled up a Wonga Pigeon flew off from the bank of the creek into the bush. The Wompoo Fruit-Doves were very active in the tops of the tall trees. Many birds were fighting and knocking each other off their branches. Within a few minutes I heard the Noisy Pitta calling out. I went into the bush near the creek bed and sat in the buttress roots of a big fig tree. It showed quite well for about an hour. It flew overhead a couple of times but mainly jumped along the ground close to me. Up to three were heard at one time calling out in the close vicinity. They obviously knew I was there and were quite cautious and wouldn't get too close.

Noisy Pitta

The only other decent shot I obtained of the Noisy Pitta

Due to the trees being so thick it was difficult to get a good photo where I could focus on the Noisy Pittas whole body. While I was attempting to get the photos of the Noisy Pitta I heard several Green Catbirds and I saw and heard a Satin Bowerbird. I was unable to get a photo of either of these birds though.

On the way home I saw a Spotted Harrier which I flushed from the grass on the side of the road. Within a few seconds of it flying off this Black-shouldered Kite landed on a light pole. They look very similar to the Letter-winged Kite but they have a marking behind the eye, whereas the Letter-winged Kite has a neat black ring. Also the Letter-winged Kite usually sleeps and roosts during the day and hunts at night!!

Black-shouldered Kite

The same Black-shouldered Kite

The Black-shouldered Kite again
I was very surprised by the small number of birds here this time compared to last week. I will be back again, to get a better shot of the Noisy Pitta and I would like a shot of the Satin Bowerbird on the coast too. I think I would see more if it was earlier in the morning on a clear day.
More updates and pics coming soon.
If you're interested in my blog check out my site below by clicking on the link.

Australian Birds Photography: KEUNEA PHOTOGRAPHY