Monday, June 8, 2009

Stockton Sand Spit

I stopped in at the Stockton Sand Spit on the way home, the dogs had been running over the dunes for ninety minutes so were happy to doze in the car in the shade of the bridge.

The usual welcoming committe of Superb Fairywrens were there at the carpark. It was good to see males coming back into breeding plumage. Lots of non-breeding males posing in the sun, recognisable by their dark bills.

The usual ibis, herons, egrets and lapwings were foraging in the lagoon, while wattlebirds chased each other through the banksia. Two pied oystercatchers flew in from the beach, displaying their distinctive wing markings.

I was thinking about creeping out to see what was roosting on the beach for high tide, when the flock of curlews rose and flew straight towards me, providing a rare photo opportunity with these shy birds. Unfortunately the osprey that flushed them stayed out on the river. The curlew did not return to the beach, but flew off to Kooragang Dykes. I took this as a sign and went home for bacon and eggs.

Bird List:

Far Eastern Curlew Numenius madagascariensis (pictured above)
Osprey Pandion haliaetus (pictured above)
Australian Ibis Threskiornis molucca
White-faced Heron Egretta novaehollandiae
Willie-wagtail Rhipidura leucophrys
Pied Oystercatcher Haematopus longirostris
Masked Lapwing Vanellus miles
Brush Wattlebird Anthochaera chrysoptera
Great Egret Ardea alba
Superb Fairywren Malurus cyaneus

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