The March walk was our farewell to waders, as next month they will be on their extraordinarily long and hazardous annual northerly migration…10,000 kilometres one-way!
Our ocean and saline mudflats provide a mass of seafood for adult birds, but the chicks with their tiny-bills need the abundant summer insects of the Arctic.
On arriving at Blue Rocks we hardly needed the telescopes to see a flock of tiny waders on the sand.
Far over on the edge of the rocks we were pleased to see a group of the larger, and less common, Pacific Golden Plovers, however they flew away before we could photograph them.
When we had seen enough we tried Hospital Swamp which, though rapidly drying out, contained sufficient wetness to keep flocks of waders busily feeding.
Two groups of small plovers ventured out from the vegetation and, on the far side, there was one timid Spotted Crake, plus a pair of hovering Whistling Kites. Flocks of ducks and swans also flew over looking for wetter locations.
At Barwon Estuary, one Caspian Tern displayed his gorgeous red beak, and there were hundreds of swans, just beautiful in flight.
Ocean Grove Reserve was very dry but a Yellow Robin gave us the once over, and we were entertained by the delightful call of a Rufous Whistler.
When birds were in short supply we enjoyed the dragonflies.
An Echidna entertained us by hiding his head in hole, just like a small child who thinks they cannot be seen.
The tally of 54 species for the day, which included many bush birds, was very satisfactory:
Bird photos by Margaret Lacey
Dragonfly photo by Lynn Bunning
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