Saturday, June 29, 2013

Chilly winter's morning

This morning dawned bright, but chilly, with the mercury struggling to get above freezing. But Kobe and I still took our usual early morning stroll round the wetlands.

The moon has almost waned to third quarter, and it wasn't till I got home that I noticed the Galah sneaking into shot!!.  It was a bit misty, but this didn't bother the ducks, and the heavy dew made for some nice "arty" shots of the reeds and shrubs around Kaurna Wetland Park

There were a few birds around, mainly common ones like the White-plumed Honeyeater.  Striated Pardalote is often heard in the park, but less frequently seen.  This Noisy Miner was living up to its name, soundly scolding me and Kobe as we passed by.

The "Heron Tree" really lived up to its name, sporting two Cattle Egrets, a White-faced Heron and a Little Pied Cormorant.

Finally I had a lovely encounter with a group of Purple-crowned Lorikeets high up in a gum tree. 

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Skywatch Friday - Supermoon 2013

Tonight is the perigee full moon for 2013.  This is also known as the supermoon. You can read more about the supermoon here.

Windy winter walk

This morning I took Kobe for a very windy walk around the wetlands.  Yesterday was very wet so I was hoping for some bird activity.

In the end it was pretty difficult getting any useful pics, but I was pleased to get a couple of Purple-crowned Lorikeet (at last!!).  These little parrots are very common in the park, but I only ever get good views when I don't have my camera with me.

Other common birds seen were New Holland Honeyeater, Red Wattlebird and Magpielark

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Spotted Crake, Take 2!!

I headed back to Laratinga Wetlands early this morning to have a proper look for the Spotless Crake that had been seen recently.

I got there at dawn, and it was cold and foggy. As I got to the right spot, there was a small movement at the bottom of the reeds, I checked my camera and the shutter speed was only 1/5th of a second. Not good!!  I waited, and out popped a Spotted Crake.  So I cranked up the ISO to 3200, and took a couple of pics.

After about 45 minutes, another movement.  Little Grassbird this time. No photos as he stayed just inside the edge of the reeds.  Then right behind him was another movement.  This time it was the Spotless Crake, and I managed a few photos as he crossed from one side to the other, albeit a bit grainy due to the high ISO.

This is an odd time of year in Australia.  Some birds are in eclipse plumage, like this pair of Chestnut Teal. Others are in breeding plumage like this Royal Spoonbill

Once the sun burnt off some of the fog, birds started sunning themselves to warm up.  A group of Tree Martins used a clump of sedge, whilst Galahs and Little Correlas used a gum tree.

There were quite a few waterbirds around, including Common Coot, Pacific Black Duck, Pink-eared Duck and Australian Shoveler.

Overhead were good numbers of Dusky Woodswallows, and there were Superb Fairywrens everywhere mostly also in eclipse plumage. In this plumage, females can be told from males by their red lores and eyering.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Short walk at Laratinga Wetlands

As we were in Mount Barker today, we decided to have pop into Laratinga Wetlands for a short walk.  The water was high here too, but there were still plenty of birds around.

Purple Swamphens were everywhere, and the sun caught this Dusky Moorhen turning it purple too,......something I haven't seen before.

There were a few Australian Shovelers here and many White-faced Herons.

I was hoping to luck into a Spotless Crake that has been seen here, but it wasn't to be.  Only the spotted version was playing ball today.

On the way back I noticed a couple of Common Bronzewings scratching in the leaf litter, a lone Black-fronted Plover, and a co-operative Little Grassbird.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Kaurna WETlands!!

In the last two weeks we have had two major rainfall events in Adelaide, totalling over 90mm (3.5 inches).  This has resulted in the wetlands going from almost dry, (only one small pool with any water) to overflowing.  On this morning's walk with Kobe, I took my "point and shoot" to try and take a few photos to share.

The first photo is where the only water in the wetlands was up to two weeks ago, followed by some general views.  It was a bit grey to start with, but the sun soon broke through to give a lovely winter's day

Many of the footbridges are partially under water

The main collecting pond is flooding over the weir, and on the opposite side  of the wetlands, the water is flowing out of the overflow.

The main area of open water is really looking good in the winter sunshine, and "the heron tree" lived up to it's nickname.

There are still plenty of birds around, but my little camera struggled to capture many.  I did manage to zoom in on the White-faced Heron, but the Egrets (Great and Little), and Chestnut Teal were a little out of range.