Painted Honeyeater and Square-tailed Kite

Hi all,

Yesterday, Sunday, we decided it was time for some bush birding so headed for Clunes (Vic) where there are a number of areas of forestland and tracks, and what a day it turned out to be.

Our goal was to find a Painted Honeyeater for the year list. After an hour or so of pleasant wandering we finally heard one call and bolted in the general direction. All was quiet for about 5 minutes, and then it called again. Another dash and we found her feeding in thick, healthy mistletoe, just as she should be. With nice sunshine, no wind and a co-operative bird we stood, watched and took photos for about 15 minutes as she fed and preened.

At lunchtime I mumbled “raptor” through a mouthful of sandwich and pointed. It was a Square-tailed kite and it circled us for about 5 minutes while we oohed and aared at it. The rest of my lunch just seemed to taste so much better after that; perhaps because I was eating it through a huge smile.

Then after lunch we crossed the road into an adjoining bush block and about 1 km in we stopped in an area where there was some nice brush growing and a dam just inside a fence. I wandered off the road and “squeeked” to see what would pop its head up. Almost immediately I was staring at a Speckled Warbler. We ended up seeing 3 or 4. Bliss.

Then, to top the day off, we were driving back to Ballarat and a Spotted Harrier landed in a paddock beside the road. Of course it took off when we stopped but just flew and glided slowly across the paddock giving us perfect views. Sigh.

If I add in the flock of Little Corella on the Ballarat Rd nature strip at Caroline Springs (it hardly rates as bushland but …..) on the way home I saw 53 species for the day. Some days are just golden.


Jenny ===============================

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