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, 15 March 2012

Photos of Pheasant Coucal and others at Newcastle Waters, NT

Even though there was a Road Closed due to Flooding sign, it is always worthwhile checking when you know the layout of the road. I have been to Newcastle Waters a number of times over the past 5 weeks and knew I would be able to pull over if the sign was true. Luckily for me the water had receded so much it was no longer across the road. For the first time I decided to continue on past the crossing as much as the watercourse itself was alive with bird activity. I'm glad I did. I hadn't gone far up the road when I had a decision to continue on or turn around and head back for the crossing. I turned around as the weather was pretty foul and with rain squalls coming through I didn't really want to be stuck there overnight. About 50 metres after turning around, I noticed a large feathered bird sitting in a roadside tree. (Probably there when I'd driven past and hadn't noticed). I had hoped to see a Pheasant Coucal at some point in my northwards from Alice Springs journeys this year, so was delighted to see that was the species of bird that was sitting no more than 20 feet from me, albeit in behind a lot of twigs and branches. I turned the car ignition off (in the middle of the road, a back road maybe, but oblivious to any other potential traffic, does anyone else do this?) and quickly readied the camera and took a number of shots. After the photo session, I started the video camera, ready for a long session of the Coucal in the tree. It lasted about 15 seconds then the Coucal flew off. I'll try to upload the video later. For now here are the rest of the photos:

After this experience, there wasn't much else to do, so I meandered back down to the crossing and managed to block it from an oncoming car again, stopped, taking photos. The speed limit is only 10 km/h and there were people "hand-fishing from the causeway - sticking their hands up the drainpipes and pulling out fish, love the outback way of fishing! The reason I was parked in the middle of the road was a Rainbow Bee-eater, always get excited when I see flashes of colour that they have, and sometimes feel a little disappointed when I see it is just a RBE, but, this one was stunning in the stormy light:
Another local, the Weebill also caught my eye, although by this stage I was further up the road and managed to find the side of the road before stopping the car. Very pleased with these photos:

and finally, a post about Newcastle Waters at the moment wouldn't be complete without at least one photo of Black Kites. The one below is a tree-top full, with another one wanting to join the queue!
Thanks for reading. For more photos of any of the birds in this post, click on the links below in the Labels.


  1. Lovely collection of photos. I'd be please too! The colours are stunning!

  2. Great get on the coucal Rich. I'm looking forward to being able to cram all your Newcastle Waters success into the few hours I'm likely to be able to bird there later this year!!

    conditions permitting!!!

    Did you catch yourself a fish!??!

  3. Thanks Russell. No Pete, no fish, perch in any case, not my style really, why would you just grab fish when you can sit there for hours wondering if you've still got bait! Few hours, you wish, the family will want to get to Mataranka and the Hot Springs. You just said "Highway", not 2 kms in! By the way, I have a list of places that aren't worth visiting if you want! :-)

  4. Hi!
    Lovely serie, i realy love the weebill. A absolutely stunning bird.
    Greetings from Sweden