Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

May 28, 2019

Fogg Dam Northern Territory

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 1:46 am

Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve

After my Corroboree Billabong cruise, I had dinner at the pub and headed west along the Arnhem Highway and camped just past the Adelaide River. In the morning I drove up the road to Fogg Dam, the premiere spot in the Northern Territory for bird watching. The average rainfall for Fogg Dam is 1368 mm which can vary greatly from year to year. The dry season, May to September, is a cooler drier time with low humidity and little or no rain.

Orange-footed Scrubfowl


Orange-footed Scrubfowl (Megapodius reinwardt tumulus)

The Woodlands to Waterlies Walk has several of the natural habitats of Fogg Dam. Fogg Dam catches water from two small creeks that flow onto the floodplains, then into the Adelaide River. The dam wall was built in the 1950’s as part of a project to grow rice in the area. The birds ate all the rice and the project was a massive fail.

Broad-billed Flycatcher


Broad-billed Flycatcher (Myiagra ruficollis)

Arafura Fantail


Arafura Fantail (Rhipidura dryas)

Northern Fantail


Northern Fantail (Rhipidura rufiventris)

Grey Whistler


Grey Whistler (Pachycephala simplex)

Rufous-banded Honeyeater


Rufous-banded Honeyeater (Conopophila albogularis)

White-gaped Honeyeater


White-gaped Honeyeater (Stomiopera unicolor)

Forest Kingfisher


Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii )

Yellow Oriole


Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)

Mistletoebird


Mistletoebird (Dicaeum hirundinaceum)

golden orb spider


golden orb spider

Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve bird list

Orange-footed Scrubfowl (Megapodius reinwardt)
Rainbow Pitta (Pitta iris)
Arafura Fantail (Rhipidura dryas)
Northern Fantail (Rhipidura rufiventris)
Broad-billed Flycatcher (Myiagra ruficollis)
Grey Whistler (Pachycephala simplex)
Mistletoebird (Dicaeum hirundinaceum)
Bar-shouldered Dove
Peaceful Dove
White-throated Honeyeater
Rufous-banded Honeyeater (Conopophila albogularis)
White-gaped Honeyeater (Stomiopera unicolor)
Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii)
Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)
Lemon-bellied Flycatcher
Brush Cuckoo
Blue-winged Kookaburra
Varied Triller

May 22, 2019

Mary River National Park

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 4:32 am

Bird Billabong

After leaving Kakadu National Park, I headed west along the Arnhem Highway until I got to the Mary River National Park. I chucked a right turn and went into see the Mary River Billabong in the afternoon. Not much there except this Brown Goshawk who I disturbed eating some prey on the ground.

Broad-billed Flycatcher - maybe


Broad-billed Flycatcher (Myiagra ruficollis)

I think this is a Broad-billed Flycatcher. But still not sure. Probably a Leaden Flycatcher. doh! Edit. Definitely a Broad-billed Flycatcher. Thank you Nikolas.

Leaden Flycatcher


Leaden Flycatcher (Myiagra rubecula concinna)

Brown Goshawk


Brown Goshawk (Accipiter fasciatus)

Bird Billabong walk takes you to a shallow billabong that changes its character with the seasons. It is sandwiched between the Mary River Channel and the Mount Bundey Hills. I met a bunch of people on a bird tour with Experience the Wild – NT Bird Watching and Nature Tours. (www.experiencethewild.com.au)

Red-collared Lorikeet


Red-collared Lorikeet (Trichoglossus rubritorquis)

Amazing shot of the underside of the wings. Very colourful.

Silver-crowned Friarbird


Silver-crowned Friarbird (Philemon argenticeps)

Lemon-bellied Flycatcher


Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)

Brush Cuckoo


Brush Cuckoo (Cacomantis variolosus dumetorum)

I think this is barred morph immature Brush Cuckoo.

Northern Fantail


Northern Fantail (Rhipidura rufiventris )

White-necked Heron


White-necked Heron (Ardea pacifica)

Mary River National Park bird list

Brown Goshawk (Accipiter fasciatus)
Red-winged Parrot
Red-collared Lorikeet
Spangled Drongo
White-winged Triller
Banded Honeyeater
White-throated Honeyeater
Silver-crowned Friarbird
Little Friarbird
Rufous Whistler
Willie Wagtail
Northern Fantail
Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)
Brush Cuckoo (Cacomantis variolosus dumetorum)
Leaden Flycatcher (Myiagra rubecula concinna)
Broad-billed Flycatcher (Myiagra ruficollis)
Great Bowerbird
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike
Masked Finch (Peophila personata personata)
Red-tailed Black-cockatoo
Blue-winged Kookaburra
Little Woodswallow
Green Pygmy-goose
Radjah Shelduck
Plumed Whistling-duck
Black-fronted Dotterel
Glossy Ibis
Brolga
Pied Heron
White-faced Heron
White-necked Heron
Masked Lapwing
Royal Spoonbill
Australasian Darter
Whiskered Tern

Corroboree Billabong

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 3:59 am

Corroboree Billabong Wetlands Cruise

I stopped at the Corroboree Tavern on the Arnhem Highway to book a boat ride on the wetlands. The booking process was a little random without my phone signal so I just went out to the billabong and booked in for the sunset cruise which turned out fantastic. The boat driver was from Surrey in England and took us all around the billabong to see birds and crocodiles.

Comb-crested Jacana - juvenile


Comb-crested Jacana ( Irediparra gallinacea) – juvenile

This one might be about ten days old.

Comb-crested Jacana


Comb-crested Jacana ( Irediparra gallinacea)

This baby is only a few days old. Very young.

Bar-breasted Honeyeater


Bar-breasted Honeyeater (Ramsayornis fasciatus)

Australasian Darter


Australasian Darter (Anhinga novaehollandiae)

This female Australasian Darter is swallowing a decent sized catfish.

Pheasant Coucal


Pheasant Coucal ( Centropus phasianinus)

Freshwater Crocodile


Freshwater Crocodile (Crocodylus johnstoni)

Saltwater Crocodile


Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

Dingo


Dingo

Keelback water snake


Keelback water snake

Corroboree Billabong bird list

Straw-necked Ibis
Australian White Ibis
Australasian Darter
White-bellied Sea-eagle
Comb-crested Jacana
Bar-breasted Honeyeater
Red-winged Parrot
Little Friarbird
Pied Heron
Pheasant Coucal

Dingo
Keelback snake
Saltwater Crocodile
Freshwater Crocodile

Kakadu National Park 7

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 3:15 am

Aurora Kakadu Resort

The Aurora Kakadu Resort is just west of the South Alligator River. I rocked in there yesterday just expecting a bite to eat and a coffee. I haphazardly asked what the price for camping was and lo and behold it was only ten dollars for an unpowered camp. This will do me I thought. Very good value. They have hot showers, drinking water and a swimming pool. woot!

Orange-footed Scrubfowl


Orange-footed Scrubfowl (Megapodius reinwardt tumulus)

I got some really bad photos of the Orange-footed Scrubfowl. As soon as they saw me they took off into the trees and started bobbing up and down. Very weird. Hopefully I will get some better photos when I get north.

Australasian Figbird


Australasian Figbird (Specotheres vieilloti ashbyi)

The adult male of the top end sub-species ashbyi has bright yellow underparts and hindcollar and the mantle is olive-green, not grey.

Black-necked Stork


Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus)

In the morning I went on the Gungarre Forest Walk which was nearly four kilometers long. I was very happy when I came out the end of it. There were lots of rainforest patches along the walk but not that many birds.

Red-winged Parrot


Red-winged Parrot (Aprosmictus erythropterus)

Momma feeding a baby.

Lemon-bellied Flycatcher


Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)

Agile Wallaby - male


Agile Wallaby – male

backlit spider


backlit spider

full moon


full moon

Aurora Kakadu Resort bird list

Orange-footed Scrubfowl (Megapodius reinwardt tumulus)
Varied Triller (Lalage leucomela rufiventris)
Australasian Figbird (Specotheres vieilloti ashbyi)
Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)
Straw-necked Ibis
Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike
Red-winged Parrot (Aprosmictus erythropterus)
Red-collared Lorikeet
Australasian Darter
Australian Pelican
Little Egret
Magpie Goose
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo (Cacatua galerita fitzroyi)
Little Corella (Cacatua sanguinea sanguinea)
Galah
Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii)
Magpie-lark
Blue-faced Honeyeater
Blue-winged Kookaburra
Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus)
Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)
Rainbow Bee-eater (Merops ornatus)
Bar-shouldered Dove
Peaceful Dove

May 20, 2019

Kakadu National Park 6

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 3:18 am

Mamukala Wetlands

After the Kakadu Info Center, I headed to the Mamukala Wetlands. In the morning they were having a bush tucker walk so I tagged along and found out some nice information about what indigenous people eat in the bush.

Varied Triller


Varied Triller (Lalage leucomela rufiventris)

I thought this was a White-winged Triller with a stripey belly at first. doh!

Lemon-bellied Flycatcher


Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)

Rufous-banded Honeyeater


Rufous-banded Honeyeater (Conophila albogularis)

Rainbow Bee-eater


Rainbow Bee-eater (Merops ornatus)

The male is on the left with the longer tail streamers.

Long-tailed Finch


Long-tailed Finch (Poephila acuticauda hecki)

This adult Long-tailed Finch looks like he is collecting nest material.

Butterflies


Butterflies

There were heaps of butterflies on this bush near the bird hide.

After the Mamukala Wetlands, I headed west and stopped off at the South Alligator River and a few crossings where I saw lots of Glossy Ibis, Radjah Shelduck and various other water-birds.

Pied Heron in flight


Pied Heron (Egretta picata)

Black-necked Stork


Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus)

Forest Kingfisher


Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii)

Kakadu National Park bird list

Peaceful Dove
Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)
Comb-crested Jacana (Irediparra gallinacea)
Straw-necked Ibis
Glossy Ibis
Australian White Ibis
Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)
Brown Goshawk
Paperbark Flycatcher
Rainbow Bee-eater (Merops ornatus)
Long-tailed Finch (Poephila acuticauda hecki)
Crimson Finch
Varied Triller (Lalage leucomela rufiventris)
Little Friarbird
Rufous-banded Honeyeater (Conophila albogularis)
Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii)
Pied Heron
White-headed Stilt (Himantopus leucocephalus)
Masked Lapwing
Little Kingfisher
Radjah Shelduck
Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus)
Channel-billed Cuckoo

May 18, 2019

Kakadu National Park 5

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 5:59 am

Burdulba Creek and Ubirr

From Cooinda area, I headed north to Burdulba Creek and slept at Malabanjbanjdju Camping Ground. The mosquitos were horrendous. There were millions of them. I had to make friends with some backpackers to hang around their fire to get some relief from the stinging hordes. In the morning I had breakfast as quickly as possibly and headed for the creek and the surrounding billabongs.

Pacific Baza


Pacific Baza (Aviceda subcristata)

Little Friarbird


Little Friarbird (Philemon citreogularis)

Silver-crowned Honeyeater


Silver-crowned Honeyeater (Philemon argenticeps)

You can see why they get their name.

Rufous-throated Honeyeater  - juvenile


Rufous-throated Honeyeater (Conopophila rufogularis) – juvenile

Black-necked Stork  - female


Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus) – female

The next day I headed towards Ubirr and camped at the Merl Campground. Same story with the mosquitos. I went for a walk around the camping aread and in the morning drove to the Ubirr area where I walked around the roads and the riverfront near the East Alligator River. I learnt the word for Northern Territory aboriginals – binning.

immature Peaceful Dove


immature Peaceful Dove

I have no idea what this is. Very likely a juvenile something. edit. Peaceful Dove.

Grey-crowned Babbler


Grey-crowned Babbler (Pomatostomus temporalis)

Very backlit. Something different.

Long-tailed Finch


Long-tailed Finch (Poephila acuticauda hecki)

Spangled Drongo


Spangled Drongo

I think this is a Spangled Drongo but the shiny blue wing patch seems a bit weird to me.

Yellow Oriole


Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)

Kakadu National Park bird list

Pacific Baza (Aviceda subcristata)
Little Friarbird (Philemon citreogularis)
Silver-crowned Honeyeater (Philemon argenticeps)
Rufous-throated Honeyeater (Conopophila rufogularis)
Nankeen Night-heron
Radjah Shelduck
Plumed Whistling-duck
Green Pygmy-goose
Straw-necked Ibis
Black-necked Stork (Ephippiorhynchus asiaticus)
Pheasant Coucal
Little Black Cormorant
Rainbow Bee-eater
Bar-shouldered Dove
Peaceful Dove
Grey-crowned Babbler (Pomatostomus temporalis)
Red-winged Parrot
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike
Long-tailed Finch (Poephila acuticauda hecki)
Spangled Drongo (Dicrurus bracteatus)
Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)

May 16, 2019

Kakadu National Park 4

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 6:31 am

Yellow Waters Cruise

I was up at 5:30am for the 6:45am cruise from Cooinda Lodge in Kakadu National Park. The boat ride cost me a hundred bucks but it was well worth it. I was a bit skeptical at first but I thoroughly enjoyed it. Our captain Dennis was a really funny guy who knew the area and was a local indigenous man.

Comb-crested Jacana


Comb-crested Jacana (Irediparra gallinacea)

This dad Comb-crested Jacana had to look after the kids because mom took off after she pumped out the eggs.

Comb-crested Jacana


Comb-crested Jacana (Irediparra gallinacea)

When something threatens the chicks, the dad grabs up the babies under his wings to protect them.

Crimson Finch


Crimson Finch (Neochmia phaeton)

Some very young Crimson Finch chicks being fed.

Plumed Whistling-duck


Plumed Whistling-duck (Dendrocygna eytonii)

There were thousands and thousands of Plumed Whistling-ducks on the banks of the billabongs. They do not dive in the water for food but feed on the land.

Australasian Darter


Australasian Darter (Anhinga novaehollandiae)

This is a male. The female has a white tummy.

White-bellied Sea-eagle


White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

Shining Flycatcher


Shining Flycatcher (Myiagra alecto )

The Shining Flycatcher female has a chocolate back. She is very different to the all-black male.

Forest Kingfisher


Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii)

Just as we were getting off the boat, this lady spotted these pair above the wharf.

Saltwater Crocodile


Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

There were a few crocodiles during the cruise. I think this is a female because there is only one male in the territory.

Saltwater Crocodile - female


Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

I love big close ups of reptiles. The textures are amazing.

Kakadu National Park bird list

White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)
Magpie Goose
Little Pied Cormorant
Little Black Cormorant
Australasian Darter (Anhinga novaehollandiae)
Plumed Whistling-duck (Dendrocygna eytonii)
Green Pygmy-goose
Nankeen Night-heron
Great Egret
Comb-crested Jacana (Irediparra gallinacea)
Crimson Finch (Neochmia phaeton)
Magpie-lark
Australian Pelican
Whiskered Tern
Sacred Kingfisher (Todiramphus sanctus)
Forest Kingfisher (Todiramphus macleayii)
Pied Heron
Shining Flycatcher (Myiagra alecto )
Swamp Harrier

Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

Kakadu National Park 3

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 4:01 am

Mardugul Camping Ground

My third camp was at the Mardugul Camping ground, just south of Cooinda Lodge. In the afternoon, I went for a walk across the bridge at the Brett Hochman Crossing.

Rufous-banded Honeyeater


Rufous-banded Honeyeater (Canopophila albogularis)

Lemon-bellied Flycatcher


Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)

I have no idea why this is called a flycatcher when it is a robin. Doh!

Great-billed Heron


Great-billed Heron (Ardea sumatrana)

I saw this Great-billed Heron on a paperbark tree island. It was a nightmare shooting into the sun so I had to process it to get it half way decent. Still not great. But it is a new bird so woot!

Shining Flycatcher  - male


Shining Flycatcher (Myiagra alecto) – male

Frillneck Lizard


Frillneck Lizard

Crocodile


Crocodile

The next morning I went for a look at the Gun Gardun Walk near where the tent camping is. I saw a few Red-collared Lorikeets and maybe a Northern Fantail. I went to the bridge again and was looking for some Shining Flycatchers but no go. I helped an aboriginal lady get some paperbark leaves for flavouring in cooking for the hotel.

Kakadu National Park bird list

Lemon-bellied Flycatcher (Microeca flavigaster flavigaster)
Great-billed Heron (Ardea sumatrana)
Rufous-banded Honeyeater (Canopophila albogularis)
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike
White-winged Triller (Lalage tricolor)
Green Pygmy-goose
Radjah Shelduck (Tadorna radjah)
Shining Flycatcher (Myiagra alecto )
Little Pied Cormorant
Red-collared Lorikeet
Northern Fantail (Rhipidura rufiventris)
White-bellied Sea-eagle
Channel-billed Cuckoo
Paperbark Flycatcher
Radjah Shelduck

Frillneck Lizard

Kakadu National Park 2

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 2:52 am

Gungurul Camping Ground

The next camp-ground heading towards Jabiru is Gungurul. It is another basic camping site with just toilets and fire-places. The price is right, however, only six dollars per night. You cannot whinge about that! In the afternoon I went for a walk to the South Alligator River. There were a few flowering gums with a few honeyeaters and lorikeets having a feed on the blossoms.

Dusky Honeyeater


Dusky Honeyeater (Myzomela obscura obscura)

 Silver-crowned Friarbird


Silver-crowned Friarbird (Philemon argenticeps)

Little Eagle


Little Eagle (Hieraaetus morphnoides)

This Little Eagle was having a good look at me when I was on the bridge.

Brown Goshawk


Brown Goshawk (Accipiter fasciatus)

This Brown Goshawk landed in the grass at the side of the road and was rooting around in the undergrowth. I have no idea what he was doing.

Red-collared Lorikeet


Red-collared Lorikeet (Trichoglossus rubritorquis)

Red-tailed Black-cockatoo  - female


Red-tailed Black-cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksii) – female

Kakadu bird list

Dusky Honeyeater (Myzomela obscura obscura)
Brown Honeyeater
White-throated Honeyeater
Little Friarbird (Philemon citreogularis)
Silver-crowned Friarbird (Philemon argenticeps)
Yellow Oriole (Oriolus flavocinctus)
Red-tailed Black-cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus banksii)
Red-collared Lorikeet (Trichoglossus rubritorquis)
Brown Goshawk (Accipiter fasciatus)
Little Eagle (Hieraaetus morphnoides)
Rainbow Bee-eater (Merops ornatus)
Peaceful Dove
Spangled Drongo

May 15, 2019

Kambolgie Campground

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 6:09 am

Kambolgie Creek Camp Ground

Kambolgie Creek camp was the first one in Kakadu National Park as you come in from the Pine Creek end. It is quite a nice little camping spot with just drop toilets. The creek runs by down the hill and there are signs that say “Crocodile sighted 12-3-2019 and 10-4-2019 – four meters in length.” I had a good night camping with a young fella who cooked up some mutton and vegetables in the camp oven. Delicious!

Banded Honeyeater


Banded Honeyeater (Cissomela pectoralis)

The only flowering gum for miles and I get a new bird of the top end. win.

Spotted Harrier


Spotted Harrier (Circus assimilis)

Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike


Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike (Coracina novaehollandiae)

White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike


White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike (Coracina papuensis hypoleuca)

Bar-shouldered Doves


Bar-shouldered Dove (Geopelia humeralis)

These doves were pecking away in the burnt-out bush. I am not sure for what. Maybe seeds. There is a little Peaceful Dove in there too.

 Goanna


Goanna

I am not sure which of the Varanus monitors this one is.

Wild Pig


Wild Pig

This wild pig was eating the new shoots of the pandanus palm. When it saw me it gave me a long look, then I turned away and got ready to run. But then it ran off, so I went phew.
I saw two wild pigs in the last two days. As well as a wild Water Buffalo. They reckon they can be quite aggressive so I did not stop and pat it.

Danger


Danger

Do not get eaten by the crocodiles!

Kakadu National Park bird list

Banded Honeyeater (Cissomela pectoralis)
Yellow-throated Miner
Blue-faced Honeyeater
White-throated Honeyeater
Ruby-throated Honeyeater
Galah
Red-tailed Black-cockatoo
Magpie-lark
Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike (Coracina novaehollandiae)
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike (Coracina papuensis hypoleuca)
Spotted Harrier (Circus assimilis)
Blue-winged Kookaburra
Rainbow Bee-eater
White-winged Triller
White-breasted Woodswallow
Little Woodswallow
Paperbark Flycatcher
Willie Wagtail
Rufous Whistler
Bar-shouldered Dove
Peaceful Dove
Straw-necked Ibis
Red-winged Parrot
Great Egret

Wild Pig
Perentie Monitor – maybe
wild Water Buffalo

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