Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The 'Birding Journo Gods'

A special week for all the birding businesses from the Bird Trails Tropical Queensland group in Tropical North Queensland, with a week's visit to the region from a group of international birdwatching journalists. We all had the opportunity to host them and, all in all, they had a fabulous time.
We decided that the 'Birding Journo Gods' were watching out for us when they arrived in Daintree. After a few days of miserable rain, the sun came out and so did the birds.
A quick drive to the end of Stewart Creek Rd gave us some of our best birds with Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, Azure Kingfisher, Little Kingfisher, Yellow-breasted Boatbill, Victoria's Riflebird, Pied Monarch, Lovely Fairy-Wren, Cicadabird and many many more birds in feeding flocks, working their way through the forest. Couldn't get the grins off our faces!!

Hugh, Ed, Trish and Mike - Stewart Creek Rd
A fabulous couple of weeks for birdwatching in Daintree generally, with good regular views of Great-billed Heron on the Daintree River, a family of four Black-necked Stork on the banks of the river, Red-necked Crake, Pied Monarch and Little Kingfisher at Red Mill House, Cassowary sightings near Cape Trib and Little Eagle in the Daintree Valley.
All good, really!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Little Kingfisher is back!

After disappearing for a few months over the Wet Season, the Little Kingfisher has returned to the pond in the garden at Red Mill House.
Australia's smallest kingfisher, and probably the most elusive, this bird is a target species for many birdwatchers visiting tropical north Queensland, and Daintree in particular.
This lovely photo, taken last year by JJ Harrison from Tasmania, shows the Red Mill House Little Kingfisher looking more like a Puffin than a Kingfisher with his mouthful of fish!

The Little Kingfisher is a bird of lowland rainforest streams, preferring dark, narrow spaces with overhanging vegetation. It may also inhabit lakes, estuaries and coastal mangroves. It perches low, plunges deeply into the water for fish and small crustaceans and returns to perch. It will often bob it's head and wings while watching for prey.