Notes to readers of this Blog


Thank you for dropping by to check out my blog. You will see a lot of other Blogs about birds I follow down the left hand side. I strongly encourage you to check some of these out as well, they are entertaining and I love to see birds from all over the world, I hope you do too.

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Birds of Lajamanu - Jacky Winter, Grey-fronted Honeyeater and others

Work has brought me to Lajamanu, a community in the central north west of the NT. To get here is a decent drive from Alice Springs, heading north until just beyond Dunmarra, then a left turn onto the Buchanan Highway to Top Springs, another left at Top Springs onto the Buntine Highway and then another left turn just before Kalkarindji, for the final 100 or so kms to Lajamanu.
There are lots of flowering shrubs around at the moment which normally means birds have lots of food and the honeyeaters are out in force.
It took me a little while to identify the Jacky Winter, a fairly non-descript bird that looks like a lot of other small birds, but I am fairly confident my id is right, although always happy to be corrected. Generally they were sitting on tree-tops on bare branches like the last photo, but the one in the first four photos came to check me out in a tree on the other side of the road from where I had stopped. This was about 2 kms from town.

The Grey-fronted Honeyeaters are a noisy mob, and they delight in flitting over the shrub-tops and then diving into a bush just beyond eyesight. Can be very frustrating. But eventually they started to show themselves. I saw these just opposite the Police Station which is the first building you come to driving into town. They look like a similar species, the Grey-headed Honeyeater, but on further close inspection of the photos, they have a break between the black part on their nape and their eye:

Continuing on the theme of the honeyeaters were the Brown Honeyeaters and the White-plumed Honeyeaters. These are seen around town and on the outskirts:

Another bird I should be more familiar with is the Rufous Songlark. I had trouble working out what this bird was as I was missing the familiar songs heard so often earlier this year down around Alice Springs. Finally, after many photos, I managed a blurry photo as one flew off and I could see the reddish brown of the rump. This one perched nicely on a twig not far from me:

In our family we know this next bird of the Dove of the Top End as it is one of the more common sounds and sights we have seen on our trips up north. This Peaceful Dove was feeding in amongst the grass and ground cover just near where I was parked:

The last photographs are of one of the prettiest parrots - the Red-winged Parrot. I have heard these around town but not actually seen them. It took a trip just outside of town to get the photos. I had just pulled over on a deserted track and could hear the parrot calling to others. At first I couldn't see it as I was looking in the sky, but then realised the sound was coming from the same place and looked to the top of a nearby tree and saw this:

Other birds seen around Lajamanu thus far include Black Kites (lots of them), Little Corellas, Black-faced and White-breasted Woodswallows, Willie Wagtail, Zebra Finch, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Magpie Lark, and Red-backed Kingfishers. Hopefully more to come in the coming days and next week.

Happy Birding!

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