Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Birding at Werribee’s WTP

Today I spent a very enjoyable day birding with my friend Jen Spry who generously gave up her day to show me around this fantastic place!  I was even more amazed that she even turned on her mobile phone in case I needed to phone her on my way to our meeting point! For those of you who know Jen will realise this was an amazing event in itself and I feel very privileged!! J

We had only been driving for a few minutes when we got our first treat and one of the day’s highlights! A pair of Stubble Quail wandering down the track!  NOICE!!! These cute little bundles entertained for a while and even posed for photos. They are such a delight to watch and I was smiling for hours afterwards.

We spent a full day exploring the WTP but don’t ask me exactly where we went, as I was lost after the  few minutes.  This place is the size of a small country and it was awesome exploring it!
There were relatively few waders feeding today but I expect that was due to the group of bird banders who had canon-nets set up and a guy was walking around flushing the Stints. Many of the birds had resorted to hiding in the grass. I found watching the banders trudging around the marsh disturbing and I feel it was unnecessary.  I am not a fan of bird banding at the best of times but to band Stints? Surely after all the research already done on these birds it is no longer necessary? Why disturb their feeding after they’ve flown half way around the world and need to eat?
Anyway the day was wonderful and some of the highlights included Common, Little, Whiskered, Crested and White-winged Black Terns which are great fun to try and photograph as they soar past!

White-winged Black Tern

Eastern Curlew, Red Knot, Black-tailed Godwit, Red-necked Avocets, Musk Duck, Blue-billed Duck, Hardhead, Shelduck, Glossy Ibis along with a variety of raptors were enjoyed.

I was amazed at the sheer size of the WTP and the day passed very quickly.  I am very grateful to Jen Spry for taking the time to show me around, it was great to catch up with her again and it was a really enjoyable day! Thank you Jen!!