Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Australia, Fiji and New Caledonia - 11th - 13th November (Days 1-3 - Part 2)

We arrived at Lithgo Sewage Farm at 14:00 and birded here until 14:30, as we arrived two fantastic Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo flew high overhead. The number of Pink-eared Duck was amazing, around 150-200 birds, I had always wanted to see this species and they didn’t disappoint with their barred plumages and odd Shoveler like bills with small membraneous flaps at the tip of the upper mandible specially adapted for dappling and filtering microscopic organisms. Other ducks here included Australian ShovelerHardheadFreckled DuckManed Duck as well as numerous Hoary-headed Grebe, a single Black-fronted Dotteral and Australian Reed Warbler plus our first Eastern Grey Kangaroo, a female with a well-grown joey.

Eastern Grey Kangaroo - Lithgow Sewage Farm

Part of flock of Pink-eared Duck at Lithgow Sewage Ponds. Also in this image are Grey Teal, Australian Shoveler, Pacific Black Duck and Common Coot

We had lunch at the small town of Capertee and then drove into the Capertee Valley stopping at a few sites en-route including Glen Alice (Site 10) but heading for the bridge on Genowland road (Site 11) but as we drove the sky blackened and the rain started and by the time we got to the bridge the rain was torrential, still we had managed to see Zebra Finch, Australasian Pipit, Red-rumped Parakeet, Galah, Little Corella, Crimson Rosella, Fairy Swallow, Striated Pardalote, Eastern Yellow Robin and Hooded Robin, Brown Treecreeper and White-winged Chough amongst others. We headed back with a few brief stops between showers en-route and stopped for food at Katoomba, massive plates of beef and seafood, we crashed at around 22:00 at the Bowen Inn Motel, Lithgow.

A useful bird trail guide to the Capertee Valley can be found here and the sites referred to are those shown in the guide. This is a map of the site from the trail guide:

Red-necked Wallaby - Capertee Valley

Zebra Finch - Capertee Valley

Red-rumped Parakeet - Capertee Valley

Little Corella - Capertee Valley

White-winged Chough - Capertee Valley

Links to other days of the trip