Sunday, 27 December 2015

Australia, Fiji and New Caledonia - 28th November (Day 18)

We were up a little late today and had a relaxing morning packing and even having breakfast at the  hotel - bacon, eggs, sausage etc. Fantastic! After checking out we headed out of Noumea and back northwards to the airport. Checking in in good time we relaxed in the airport and boarded our flight to Sydney pretty much on time departing at 12:40 and landing at 15:50. After collecting our car we met up with Steve Anyon-Smith, our guide for the next day or so. I had last met Steve in Borneo while watching a Whitehead's Broadbill on Mount Kinabalu in Borneo so it was nice to catch up with him again. Steve was to be our guide for the remaining part of the evening and for the last morning in the Royal National Park to the south of Sydney tomorrow. Steve has an unrivalled knowledge of the birds in the Sydney area, and in particular the Royal National Park, and has a very Australian sense of humour. We spent the late afternoon birding in the suburbs of Sydney seeing a range of birds with the highlights being a roosting pair of Powerful Owl, a roosting pair of Tawny Frogmouth and Satin Bowerbird. We headed to the park visitor centre close to Audley and walked the trail south from here on the west side of the river. After waiting in the park for the sun to drop watching Chestnut Teal, Brown Cuckoo Dove, Australian King Parrot and Scaly-breasted Lorikeet. Soon after sunset a White-throated Nightjar showed and the night walk produced Sugar GliderBrush-tailed Possum, Red Fox (introduced pest species), Tawny Frogmouth and the introduced Rusa Deer. We returned to our hotel at around 22:30 and after faffing with bags etc for tomorrow we crashed for the night.

West coast of New Caledonia near to Noumea as we left the island

Powerful Owl - Sydney, Australia

Tawny Frogmouth - Sydney, Australia

Map of Royal National Park, Sydney is located to the north of Port 
Hacking and the park is a short drive from the city

Sulphur-crested Cockatoo - Royal National Park, Sydney

Sulphur-crested Cockatoo - Royal National Park, Sydney

 Little Pied Cormorant - Royal National Park, Sydney

Eastern Dwarf Tree-frog - Royal National Park, Sydney

 Royal National Park, Sydney

Sulphur-crested Cockatoo selfie - Royal National Park, Sydney

Sugar Glider - Royal National Park, Sydney

Tawny Frogmouth - Royal National Park, Sydney

Links to other days of the trip