Bunyip State Park – March 2016

By Peter Bennet

For once the weather gods (to whom humblest felicitations) did not smile upon us as they usually do, and it was into a forecast of showers that we headed.

Rufous Fantail - Merrilyn Sarong

Rufous Fantail – Merrilyn Sarong

At least those of us brave enough to do it, rumour has it that some were not up to the challenge and elected to rise late, linger over coffee, peruse the paper at a leisurely pace … no! stop it!

Fan-tailed Cuckoo - Marilyn Ellis

Fan-tailed Cuckoo – Marilyn Ellis

And so, a group of sturdy-hearted individuals met at Dyers Picnic Ground to see what (apart from mud and trailbikes) was in store. It was, admittedly, a slow start which was followed by a languid middle and concluding with a near-torpid end, at least in the matter of the birdlist.

Grey Fantail - Stephen Garth

Grey Fantail – Stephen Garth

However excellent sightings and possibly even photos were had of grey fantail (there is no truth to the scurrilous proposition that we had to wave them away to try to focus on the empty branch lately vacated by something less, how shall we say, brazen); we found a koala; and we were able to whip up some mild excitement for quite a number of seconds over a snake (Possibly a Lowland Copperhead?).

Snake - Ruth Ault

Snake – Ruth Ault

Pink robins were heard and a putative female spotted; Rufous Fantails were about, if not very forthcoming; Golden and Rufous whistlers lurked in the undergrowth; and there was a quite reasonable range of honeyeaters including Crescent, Lewin’s and White-eared. Not identified at the time but emerging from photos was a Brown Gerygone – at least the late ID saved us trying to figure out how to pronounce it.

Swordgrass Brown Butterfly - Anthea Fleming

Swordgrass Brown Butterfly – Anthea Fleming

After exploring some of the nearby tracks and an early lunch we moved on to Bunyip River Road where under John‘s authoritative leadership we found an extensive list of 2 species (yep, Grey Fantail was one of them). A hasty move then to Aqueduct Track and a pleasant stroll with such exotics as magpie (Australian) and Red-Browed finch (also Australian).

Eastern Yellow Robin - John Stirling

Eastern Yellow Robin – John Stirling

Thanks to John Van Doorn for leading the day and I’m sure it wasn’t his fault about the weather, really. Apparently it didn’t rain at all on any of the several reco trips he made …

BirdLife Melbourne Outings Proforma Bunyip SP 20160319


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s