Saturday, March 1, 2014

New Species for my Coles Creek Property

Over the last few months taking photos has been at a minimum due to work and other commitments. I have only taken a few quick photos when I have seen or heard something different around the house. Going elsewhere to look for birds to photograph hasn't happened for nearly 2 months!! I'm going to try to get out a few times in the coming months.

Here are some of the limited photos that I have taken over the last month or more. When I arrived home later one night I saw an owl land just above one of my poultry pens. I thought it looked like a Southern Boobook when it flew. I have been a hoping to get a photo of them all summer, as they are normally very common here during the summer. I grabbed the camera but it turned out to be one of the resident Tawny Frogmouths. A few Southern Boobook arrived early in the summer but the left and no others have been heard since. Normally between 6 and 12 could be heard most night of summer. The dry weather must have effected them this year.

Tawny Frogmouth

On the property Royal Spoonbills are seen quite often wading though the creeks and dams. Over the last few months my friend said that he had seen one or two Yellow-billed Spoonbills here quite often. I hadn't seen the Yellow-billed Spoonbills anywhere until the other day when I captured this solitary one on the dam. Apparently one is normally seen with several Royal Spoonbills.

Yellow-billed Spoonbills often appear grubby and dirty

Yellow-billed Spoonbill

The same Yellow-billed Spoonbill

The other night I was out a little bit later in the yard and I heard a very obvious call, which I haven't heard on the property before. I didn't go and look for the bird that night. The following night I heard it again from the same spot for a few minutes before it stopped. Last night I decided I would go and have a quick look in the same location where I had heard it the previous nights. Within a few minutes I heard it calling again and I was ready with my camera! It was an Owlet Nightjar. I know they are very common throughout most of Australia but it is the first one that I have heard for certain on my property and definitely the first one I have seen here. This bird showed very well, at close range for several minutes. I was very pleased with the photos that I obtained of this bird. Anywhere else I have seen them they are extremely flighty and land quite a distance from people.

Owlet Nightjar

The same Owlet Nightjar

The Owlet Nightjar watching me

Owlet Nightjar front view

Owlet Nightjar from the opposite side

Owlet Nightjar, front view, whole body shot

Owlet Nightjar, front view, whole body shot again

The Owlet Nightjars are definitely one of my favourite species!!

More updates and pics coming soon.
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