Thursday, May 27, 2010

Birding updates

Dryer weather and less humidity since the Easter deluge and the Daintree comes into it's own for visitors - it's a fabulous time of year.
A little quieter for birds, but some some great sightings nevertheless.
This is the season for flycatchers, monarchs,fantails and honeyeaters. In the colder months the Lewin's Honeyeater comes down from the cooler Atherton Tableands region to spend time in the lowlands. The rattling 'machine gun' call is distinctive and always a good sign that winter is on it's way.
A common large honeyeater in Daintree is the Helmeted Friarbird - noisy, gregarious and bossy, they are very versatile - eating fruit or insects. They are one of the easiest birds to attract to garden feeders.

Spotted at Jindalba boardwalk this week was the Noisy Pitta - a fabulously bright ground feeder which is often difficult to find, and also Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove - another favourite with birders.
Also seen along the Mossman Daintree road was Barking Owl, one of the few owls seen in the Daintree. Barking Owl, named for it's call, can often be heard in the wee hours of the morning in Daintree Village.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Birding updates

As the weather dries out, there have been some great rainforest birds seen north of the Daintree River in recent days.
Regular sightings of a male Cassowary with three chicks picking up fallen fruit in the Daintree Icecream Company orchard, delighting visitors. Female Victoria's Riflebird has been seen along Dubuji Boardwalk and Wompoo Fruit-Dove at Jindalba Boardwalk.
On the Daintree River and on Stewart Creek there have been good sightings of the Great-billed Heron, Australia's largest Heron and one of the most elusive. This is one of the target species for birdwatchers visiting the Daintree.

Another target species for visiting birdwatchers is the Little Kingfisher, which has been seen regularly on the pond in the garden at Red Mill House in Daintree Village. A shy, elusive Kingfisher, it is Australia's smallest at only 11cm. An aquatic Kingfisher, it prefers dark, narrow places with overhanging vegetation. Everyone's favourite!