Thursday, April 28, 2011

Yellow-billed Spoonbill

An interesting visitor to Cranbourne Botanical Gardens, a Yellow-billed Spoonbill. It appeared to be slightly immature as its bill had not yet turned yellow and its feathers and legs were greyish. Faint pinking of the breast, neck and head made for an interesting observation.
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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Cape Barren Geese on Phillip Island

There are still a few Cape Barren Geese on Phillip Island. I observed several at Churchill Island, Swan Lake and Kittymiller Bay. Easy to photograph but don't get too close, they aren't afraid to chase you.
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Ruddy Turnstone at Reef Island

A month ago there was a large variety of shorebirds at Reef Island, today there were several Red-capped Plovers, Double-banded Plovers, and a single Ruddy Turnstone.
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More birds at Healesville

The wetland area at Healesville Sanctuary has a few treasures that can be a challenge to photograph in the bright light and shadows. A Great Egret posed in the sunshine for me whilst a Pied Heron was perched high in a tree. A pair of Plumed Whistling Ducks waddled down to the waters edge allowing a brief glimpse.
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Some more shots from Healesville Sanctuary

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Orange Bellied Parrot

Whenever I go near the coast I always have one eye open for Orange Bellied Parrots, a rare bird that is close to extinction in the wild with as few as 15 left. Healesville Sanctuary has a successful breeding program for these lovely little birds and I counted 8 in a protected aviary. Let's hope they can save them.
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Birds of Prey at Healesville

A visit to Healesville Sanctuary enabled me to practice taking shots of birds in flight, quite tricky as it turned out. The birds would fly around the arena at great speed and the background was constantly changing from light skies to dark backgrounds. The Black Kite (top) was the most predicatable and easiest to capture, whilst the Brown Falcon was far too quick. On queue, a 'wild' Wedgie flew in to join the fracas and allowed a couple of decent shots (bottom).
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Monday, April 25, 2011

Western Treatment Plant, Werribee


Great Egret

Golden Headed Cisticola

Australian Hobby

Australian Shelducks

Brown Falcon

Whistling Kite

Little Egret

Red-necked Avocet

Black Shouldered Kite

An amazing place to visit for birdwatchers, I must have observed at least 50 different species in total including some that I had never seen before including the Great Crested Grebe, Banded Stilt, Red-necked Avocet and White Bellied Sea Eagle. Photographic conditions were not the best with variable cloud cover ruining most shots.
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