Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

April 19, 2015

Coober Pedy

Filed under: Birds — Tags: , — admin @ 4:28 am

The Breakaways and Dingo Fence.

I did a few walks around the memorial, about ten kilometers south of Coober Pedy. I never saw very much, just a mob of Zebra Finch, a few White-winged Fairy-wren, and a couple of mangy crows. And I walked for miles and miles and had a really good look.

White-winged Fairy-wren
White-winged Fairy-wren (Malurus leucopterus)

I went for a drive to The Breakaways, which is a bunch of mesas sticking up out of the desert. Sea levels were much higher 150 million years ago. As warmer climates unlock frozen water from the poles, so much of Central Australia lay under a vast inland sea. Much of the area is mudstone with a cap of harder rock. Sections of this are eroded and the softer mudstone is eroded leaving sections still sticking up out of the plains protected by their harder cap-rocks.

girl on mesa
Girl on mesa.

I found this Nankeen Kestrel sheltering in the lee shade of a mesa top. It was not going out in that hot mid-day sun.

Nankeen Kestrel
Nankeen Kestrel (Falco cenchroides)

Looking out on the plain to a distant mesa.

Mesa at Breakaways
A distant mesa.

And a panoramic shot of the landscape.

Breakaways pano
Panorama of The Breakaways.

Here is a typical mesa showing the hard cap-rock holding it all together.

Breakaways mesa
Typical mesa.

Further past the Breakaways was the dingo fence, which stretches for 5000 kilometers from Queensland to South Australia. It is supposed to keep the dingos out, to stop them eating all the sheep.

The Dingo Fence
The Dingo Fence

Back in town, I went to the Umoona Opal place which was underground. A lot of homes in Coober Pedy have been built underground, which is a great idea, keeping the temperature constantly around 25 degrees Celsius.

Underground museum
Umoona underground museum

There were a bunch of White-plumed Honeyeaters up the lookout near the Big Winch making a hell of a racket.

White-plumed Honeyeater
White-plumed Honeyeater (Lichenostomus pencillatus)

And last but not least a panoramic view of the town of Coober Pedy.

Coober Pedy
Coober Pedy town.

Coober Pedy bird list.

Australian Raven
White-plumed Honeyeater
Singing Honeyeater
Black-faced Woodswallow
Little Corella
Zebra Finch
White-winged Fairy-wren
Nankeen Kestrel (Falco cenchroides)

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