Monday, December 6, 2010


Keen local birders, John and Lynette Desmond, came upon an expansive swamp near the sewage treatment plant and ovals, along Quarry Rd. in Bundanoon, some time ago... It was one of four Bundanoon locations visited on Saturday's Southern Highboca/Southern Highlands Birdwatchers bird count excursion, which took amateur ornithologists everywhere in the Highlands from Bargo River to Lake Alexander at Mittagong. The focus of this outing, which lasted from 4pm Sat to 4pm Sun, was to count as many Highland species as possible in twenty-four hours. The group and I were able to tally ninety-three species, which is a decent result.

The seemingly vast, otherworldly swamp (I imagined I was in the Aussie tropics for a while there, nervy/adrenalised by Saltwater Crocs) has much potential for sought after birds such as Brown and Little Bittern, as well as various ducks and crakes, frogs and more frogs, and perhaps, Tiger Snakes (I've never come across one in the wild - would love to). Scarlet Robin and White-naped Honeyeater have been sighted there at the right times of year.

A pair of Brown-headed Honeyeaters were foraging in the midstorey of the swamp's tangled outskirts when the Highboca crew and I were there. BHHs aren't birds I've studied much in my decades of birding. I hope to find them again and let them sing me their secrets.

LJ, December 6 2010

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