wedge-tailed eagle

Raptors

Order: Falconiformes. Family: Accipitridae – hawks, eagles, buzzards, harriers, kites and Old World vultures Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus axillaris) White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) Swamp Harrier (Circus approximans) Whistling Kite (Haliastur sphenurus) Brahminy More »

hyottoko mask

Japanese Cultural Night #2

Saturday Night Live. Last night I went out to the second Japanese Cultural Night at the Ski-jo up the road(Furano, Hokkaido, Japan). The last one was a few weeks ago so I More »

ski furano

Furano Skiing 3

Skiing at the Furano Zone. I woke up this morning an looked out the window and there was about ten centimeters of fresh snow on the cars. Which was a very good More »

kobe

On to Hokkaido

Arrived in Furano. I am so tired. My eyelids are drooping and my shoulders feel like the weight of the world is upon them. My head feels heavy and I am almost More »

oasis hummingbird

Best Bird of the Year 2010

Best Bird of 2010 I saw a post on 10,000 birds about the best bird of 2010 so I was curious as to what defines the “best” bird of the year. I More »

Pacific Gull

2010 Birding Photography Retrospective

2010 Looking Back Well here we go again. Another year bites the dust. I can remember doing my Overview of 2009 just like it was yesterday. The new year of 2010 started More »

la hoya skiing

South America Overview

South America I flew into Buenos Aries from Sydney after a horrendous 14 hour flight. It took me a few days to readjust my body clock. Meanwhile I was really enjoying going More »

Snowy Egret

More Chicama Surf, Birds

More Surfing and Birds at Chicama, Peru. This morning after my surf at Chicama, I saw an Egret down on the rocks below the hostel. I had seen a couple of them More »

American Oystercatcher

El Chaco, Paracas NP

El Chaco Birding. El chaco is the town and port at the entrance to Paracas Nature Reserve in Southern Peru. This morning after I arrived here, I went for a walk along More »

Andean Lapwing

Bird of Lake Titicaca, Bolivia

Copacabana and Isla del Sol, Bolivia. The Puna Teal is found on the Andean altiplano. Its Chilean name is Pato puna. They have a black cap that extends to below the eyes. More »

wildflower

Cassilis Park Birding

Spring is here.

It is nearly September and Spring is coming. I have been finding lots of nests. The other day I saw a Blue-faced Honeyeater nest and today I saw Magpie-lark and Noisy Friarbird nests. Things are warming up although I did spend a very cold night at Cassilis, on top of the Great Dividing Range at a whopping 700 meters altitude.

Noisy Friarbird
Noisy Friarbird (Philemon corniculatus)

Adult Noisy Friarbirds have the most beautiful neck frills. They are the most gorgeous birds and have the awesomest songs. The only thing that lets them down is the old-crone witch bump on the schnozz. 😉

Noisy Friarbird builds nest
Noisy Friarbird at nest.

The Noisy Friarbird nest seems to be made out of fluffy things and grasses all woven together in a messy construction.

Magpie-lark and nest
Magpie-lark at nest.

Peewees in contrast make the neatest mud nests.

Musk Lorikeet
Musk Lorikeet (Glossopsitta concinna)

Golden Whistler
Golden Whistler (Pachycephala pectoralis)

White-throated Treecreeper
White-throated Treecreeper (Cormobates leucophaeus)

The orange patch on the cheek gives this White-throated Treecreeper away as being a female.

honeyeater

Battery Rock

Merriwa, New South Wales.

Battery Rock Rest Area is between Sandy Hollow and Merriwa on the Golden Highway, which goes from Singletong to Dubbo in New South Wales. I have never stopped there before, but imagine my surprise when I encountered these basaltic columns. They are formed because of internal pressures when they are cooling out from lava.

Basalt hexagonal columns
Basaltic columns

They are meant to be hexagonal but I counted a lot of pentagonal columns. I do not know why.

Basalt columns
Basalt columns.

There were a lot of Blue-faced Honeyeaters and I found a nest. I had never seen one of their nests before. It is a double first for me. doh!

Blue-faced Honeyeater at nest
Blue-faced Honeyeater

Pretty soon I will be seeing Yellow-necked Miners as I go west , but for now they are still Noisy Miners.

Noisy Miner
Noisy Miner

Not sure what this is. Some sort of parasitic plant growing on a gum tree.

Parasite
Parasite plant

surfing

Saltwater Surfing

Mid-north Coast, New South Wales.

Green Knob is just on the coast from Taree on the mid-north coast of New South Wales. It is not a hollow wave but is good for long boards and just having fun. The sun was out and the tide was a bit low for my liking so I took some photos of a guy I met from Caloundra in Queensland.

backlit
Backlit.

It was early in the morning so the photos were a bit backlit. It is best with the sun in the west a lot more I reckon.

green knob surf
Turning into the bowl.

cutback Green Knob
Cutback.

Green Knob barrel
Getting inside a little barrel.

oystercatcher

Fun and Games

Mid-north Coast – New South Wales.

Fun and games on the mid-north coast of New South Wales in the past week or so. I saw a Brahminy Kite on the back beach of Saltwater National Park.

Brahminy Kite
Brahminy Kite

And there were a lot of terns and gannets diving in the water for fish. I get a bit wary when birds are working out at sea. I worry about what else might be feeding on the fish.

Crested Tern
Crested Tern

Further up the coast at Rainbow Beach at Bonny Hills, there was a rainbow!

Rainbow Beach
Rainbow Beach

And a few kilometers up the road at Lake Cathie, this guy foolishly got his 4×4 stuck in the lake. The council gave him a fine because you are not supposed to drive in there.

Stuck in the sand
Stuck in the sand.

surfing

Increasing Swell

Mid-north Coast Surfing.

A beach south of Forster on the mid-north coast of New South Wales. Yesterday it was flat and the wind has been howling for days. The coldest snap in years. There is snow on the Great Dividing Range, roads are cut off in the mountains and snow is dumping on the resorts.

7 mile photo B7D-4303_zpsofew7ysi.jpg

Today the ground swell is starting to kick in. It usually does this after a prolonged period of strong westerly winds. Or it is the swell from the massive lows coming from the Southern Ocean and Antarctica.

7 mile photo B7D-4322_zpsmhdo4yn6.jpg

7 mile photo B7D-4329_zpsvzhgqkai.jpg

7 mile photo B7D-4342_zps5lcnajfs.jpg

trotting

Training the trotters

Cessnock Showground

I stayed at Cessnock Showground for a couple of nights to get some repairs on my car. I was fascinated by the trotters who were stabled there and trained on the race-track. I do not know anything about horses and I think I have been to horse races maybe once in my life.

Trotter
Training the trotter

The boys took the trotters out in the morning and evening for training. They would do a couple of laps a bit slowly and then go flat out for a couple of laps. And then slow them down again before giving another couple of horses a run.

Training Trotters
And they are racing.

Trotting
Coming around the bend

Yellow-tailed black-cockatoo

Aerial Combat

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo vs Pied Currawong.

The Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoos came down the valley, screeching their heads off. There must have been more than twenty of them and the noise was catastrophic. I am in the Peel Valley, at Swamp Creek Reserve, just near Nundle in the New South Wales Highlands. It is winter, early morning and it is freezing.

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoos
Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus funereus)

They alight onto some trees but wherever they set down they are attacked by gangs of Pied Currawongs intent on defending their territory or they are just itching for a fight.

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo
Settling down.

The Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoos do not seem to be feeding but just like to fly around screaming their stupid heads off and making a nuisance of themselves.

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo
Soaring high.

Then the Pied Currawong attacks in the air and it is on. A classic dog-fight with both combatants ducking and weaving.

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo versus Pied Currawong
Engaging

Tail feathers are nipped and the intruders are driven off.

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo vs Pied Currawong
Get out of here!

spiny-cheeked Honeyeater

Woolomin Birding

Woolomin Recreation Reserve , Peel River.

Woolomin is further along the Peel River going up the mountains towards Tamworth, just past Nundle and the Chaffey Dam. There are lots of excellent old gum trees on the reserve which is also part of a Travelling Stock Route.

Fan-tailed Cuckoo
Fan-tailed Cuckoo

Restless Flycatcher
Restless Flycatcher

Musk Lorikeet
Musk Lorikeet

Musk Lorikeet
Musk Lorikeet

White-plumed Honeyeater
White-plumed Honeyeater

Scarlet Honeyeater
Scarlet Honeyeater

Australian King-Parrot
Australian King-Parrot

Woolomin Recreation Reserve Bird List

Fan-tailed Cuckoo
Restless Flycatcher
Musk Lorikeet
Eastern Rosell
Australian King-Parrot
White-plumed Honeyeater
Scarlet Honeyeater
Blue-faced Honeyeater
Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater
Red Wattlebird
Noisy Friarbird
Olive-backed Oriole

birds

Wallabadah and Nundle Birding

Great Dividing Range.

The Wallabadah Cemetery is one of the bird routes in the Quirindi area in the Upper Hunter area of New South Wales. It is a common stop on the way up the mountains on the way to Tamworth.

Noisy Miners
Noisy Miner

There are always some Noisy Miners around here and I have found nests here in spring time.

Wallabadah Cemetery statue
Cemetery statue

There are a lot of old graves here and it is sobering to have a look around.

Australian King-Parrot
Australian King-parrot

Besides these parrots there were Musk Lorikeet and Red-rumped Parrots. I headed up the hill towards Nundle and along the Peel Rive a short way to the Swamp Creek Reserve. It was so cold here in the mornings.

Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoo
Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoo

The black cockies were screeching their heads off in the afternoon along the mountain-sides.

Yellow Thornbill
Yellow Thornbill

Bar-shouldered Dove
Bar-shouldered Dove

Eastern Spinebill
Eastern Spinebill

Wallabadah and Nundle bird list

Yellow Thornbill
Pied Butcherbird
Lewin’s Honeyeater
Yellow-faced Honeyeater
Eastern Spinebill (Acanthorhynchus tenuirostris)
White-faced Heron
Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo
Bar-shouldered Dove (Geopelia humeralis)
Eastern Rosella
Pied Currawong
Double-barred Finch
Common Myna
Noisy Miner
Australian King-Parrot
Musk Lorikeet
Red-rumped Parrot

bee

Saltwater National Park 2015

Mid-north Coast – New South Wales.

Back at Saltwater National Park, east of Taree on the mid-north coast of New South Wales. This place always has some great birds.

Green Catbird
Green Catbird (Ailuroedus crassirostris)

The range of the Green Catbird is New South Wales to Southern Queensland coastal regions up to Great Divide. They have a red eye with a strong whitish beck. I have been hearing them for a long time. They sound like a baby crying in the forest. And this is the first time I have actually seen one.

Yellow-faced Honeyeater
Yellow-faced Honeyeater ( Lichenostomus chrysops)

White-headed Pigeon
White-headed Pigeon (Columba leucomela)

female Regent Bowerbird
female Regent Bowerbird (Sericulus chrysocephalus)

Great Cormorant
Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo)

Pied Cormorant
Pied Cormorant (Phalacrocorax varius)

Azure Kingfisher
Azure Kingfisher (Alcedo azurea)

juvenile Striated Heron
juvenile Striated Heron (Butorides striatus)

Saltwater National Park bird list

Spangled Drongo
Little Wattlebird
Rainbow Lorikeet
Australian Magpie
White-bellied Sea-eagle
Australian Raven
Silver Gull
Pied Oystercatcher
Grey Shrike-thrush
Azure Kingfisher
Brown Thornbill
Brown Gerygone
Yellow-faced Honeyeater (Lichenostomus chrysops)
White-faced Heron
White-headed Pigeon (Columba leucomela)
Green Catbird
Eastern Yellow Robin
Regent Bowerbird
Great Cormorant
Pied Cormorant
Little Egret
Striated Heron
Australasian Figbird