Sunday, July 29, 2012

Heron numbers ramping up


Striated Heron (Butorides striata) numbers building around popular Dungeness boat ramp, where the hefty Herbert River sweeps into the Hinchinbrook Channel.


Two latest newcomers left largely fending for themselves. There's the traditional way...


... or, not yet so brazen as to steal from fishers' bait buckets, but learning to look cute and hungry up close.
Click pix to enlarge  

Monday, July 23, 2012

Brown bottler on bottlebrush


Caught Brown Honeyeater (Lichmera indistincta) in bottler reaction to flash while feeding with other honeyeaters on bottlebrush in Tyto today.


White-throated Honeyeater (Melithreptus albogularis) took no notice of bright light.


Yellow Honeyeaters (Lichenostomus flavus) wouldn't sit still today but one previously posed prettily on lotus.   
Click pix to enlarge

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Soldiers fall to thick-knees


Marched across sands at Taylors Beach east of Ingham this week to catch Beach Thick-knees (Esacus magnirostris) catching soldier crabs (so-called because they scuttle forwards, not sideways) on the march. 


Plenty of crabs to go round but Pied Oystercatchers (Haematopus longirostris) in search of a square meal chose not to round them up because they barely fit the bill.
Click pix to enlarge

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Fantail offers good rate of return


Northern Fantail (Rhipidura rufiventris) at Jourama Falls, south of Ingham, during break in rain and drizzle yesterday.


Bird kept returning to low branch, and ignored me walking close in with tripod and camera.


Bit gloomy under the trees, but Pied Monarch (Arses kaupi) also paused for a passable picture.
Click pix to enlarge  

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

And then the drizzle turned to rain ...



Getting along happily and snappily with Little Kingfisher (Ceyx pusilla) in Tyto the other day until the odd spot became persistent drizzle. Which became persistent rain. Which continues ... so, two sunnier shots to ease the gloom:


Straw-necked Ibis (Threskiornis spinicollis) steps out colourfully on the dunes at Lucinda.


And Australian White Ibis (Threskiornis molucca) pauses from prodding into the Tyto mud (by now well under water again).
Click pix to enlarge

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Pelicans take up island residence


After declaring recent Australian Pelican (Pelecanus conspicillatus) an uncommon visitor two have taken over small tree-island close to the Tyto main lagoon lookout.


Bad news for the fish, good views for birdos.  
Click pix to enlarge

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Golden rule for Zittings


Several recent Orient Station road outings finally found a Zitting Cisticola (Cisticola juncidis) clear of usual long grass ...


... and close enough for plenty of detail.


Here's a Golden-headed Cisticola (Cisticola exilis) for comparison. Easy to see differences? Perhaps, in such pictures. No, most of time in field. Forget white eyebrows and tail tips and streaked heads and 'clicks' versus 'pliks'. The golden rule? If it sounds like a bird, it's not a Zitting. 
Click pix to enlarge  

Monday, July 2, 2012

Death comes with a whoosh


Australian Hobby (Falco longipennis) whooshed over sugar cane road near Ingham today and struck unidentified bird before the Toyota beast could stop and turn (it's not fully trained yet).


Feathers and fresh meat fast flew this way and that and then the Hobby flew thataway.  


Pacific Baza (Aviceda subcristata) slower though equally thorough in grabbing and munching tree frog in Tyto the other day.


Not too much meat on those long legs.


But check out these legs: immature Southern Boobook (Ninox novaeseelandiae) in Tyto on Saturday before being told to leg it by pugnacious Willie Wagtail. 
Click pix to enlarge