Sunday, July 31, 2011

National Tree Day, 31st July 2011

National Tree day at Peacehaven Botanical Park, Highfields was a really lovely outing.  Not only was there a wealth of information, but a wonderful wildlife display by Trish Le Hong, Wildlife Carer Extrodinaire.  She was on hand to educate and inform people on the imporatance of wildlife habitats.  It was really enjoyable to hear her stories and hear about the wonderful creatures she cares for.  The Land for Wildlife Team also had a fantastic display of signage, information and nesting boxes for all to see.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Highfields now has "Wildlife Awareness Signs" on Roads - Yeay! 27/07/11

I was really pleased to spot, newly erected "Wildlife Crossing" Signs in various habitat areas throughout Highfields this week.  Lets hope they work and make drivers more aware of wildlife on the roads.  The photo below was taken on O'Brien Road, on the edge of the Charles & Mottee Rodgers Reserve at Highfields, Qld.

Wildlife Awareness Sign for Drivers, newly Erectected Near Charles & Mottee Rodgers Reserve, Highfields

Monday, July 25, 2011

Tom Volp Park "Meringandan Lake" 24/07/11

On the late afternoon of the 24th of July we decided to do a quick walk around Meringandan Lake at Tom Volp Park.  I hadn't visited this area for some months and the frost hasn't been kind to the reeds and the grasses around the lake area.  Despite this, many variety of ducks were seen, including the Hardhead, which I haven't seen here before.  The water was very clear at the edge of the lake and Brendon spotted a large Eastern-Long Neck Turtle swimming amongst the reeds.

Quick Bird List For Meringandan Lake 24/07/11

Hardhead Duck's
Wood Duck
Pacific Black Duck
Swamp Hen
Superb-Blue Wren
Eastern Long-Neck Turtle

Winter Time at Meringandan Lake, Tom Volp Park

I loved the reeds in flower on the waters edge.

Hardhead Duck's amongst many other varieties at Meringandan Lake 24/07/11

Geham Birdlife, 24/07/2011

A beautiful Sunny Winter's Day at Geham proved spectacular for not only little bird sightings, but also for Wallabys and a Wedge-tailed Eagle Pair.  Many varieties of  Native Wattles were in bloom and absolutely beautiful. 

Bird/Wildlife List @ Geham 24/07/11

Wedge-tailed Eagle Pair
Toresian Crow
Red-Browed Finch
Varied Sitella
Superb-Blue Fairy Wren
Brown Honeyeater
Grey Fantail

Cooby Creek, Geham, - bottom end of Cooby Dam - first time we have seen this area full with water in 11+ years.

"Mother of Millions" Weeds in a paddock at Geham were a beautiful sight and a haven for small birds feeding on the nectar of this magnificent flowering plant.

While Driving we spotted this Beautiful Wedge-tailed Eagle on a low branch, only had the opportunity to take 3 photos... all average quality, no time to focus properly unfortunately.

Almost a good photo of the beautiful Wedge-tailed Eagle at Geham. Its mate was seen soaring above (see below)

Wedge-tailed Eagle, pursued by Crows.

Red-Browed Finch

Female Superb-Blue Wren

Unknown Medium Sized Bird?

Varied Sitella
Brown Honeyeater

Wallaby, enjoying the farmer's Oats Crop at Geham.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Hartmann Park Bush Walk 24/07/2011

Today we returned to Hartmann Park at Crows Nest, to complete the bush walk on the other side of the creek.  To access the walk, one must cross over "Bald Hills Creek".  There has been a small track and cemented stairs to access the creek, however there currently is some water in the creek after the prolific January rain. It was relatively easy to cross over the water, with no one getting wet shoes.  The water had gone down substantially since our last visit.  The damage to the creek from the January Floods was still very prominent with large silky-oak trees and native bottle brush trees pushed down horizontally.  The height of the flood mark is rather high by debris in the trees, what a sight this would have been at the time.

Entrance to Hartmann Park.  Great to see it is a
Land For Wildlife Registered Property

The walk is only a short one and according to the brochure at the entry of the park, it is only 600m in length.  The walk is fairly un-maintained with minimal signage and at times difficult to actually see where the track actually is.  The area supports lots of different species of plants, particularly plentiful grass trees, the sandstone shelf along the walk is of particular interest along with the difference in soil varieties, easily noticeable by the prolific diggings of echidna's or bandicoots.  The park provides beautiful displays of wildflowers and coastal banksias that were loaded with flowers on both of our visits here.  The park provides two picnic table areas, and truly is a beautiful spot to stop and have lunch.  While we were sitting at the picnic table we were able to view the beautiful wrens and red-browed finch's happily hopping around the grasses nearby.

Entry To Hartman Park, from small Carpark area.
Park History:  Hartmann Park was donated to the Crows Nest Shire Council in the 1970's by Mr Hubert Hartmann.  This truly is a beautiful hidden gem in Crows Nest and Mr Hartmann obviously felt the same way.  Thank goodness it was donated and not left to urbanisation.

A Walker's Guide Brochure was provided at the entrance of Hartmann Park.  This provided good information regarding the plant species and wildlife at the park.  I note that the brochure mentions that Hartmann Park boasts the only remaining location in Queensland of Baeckea diosmifolia (see here) known at present!!  I had to look up what this plant was when we got home.

Our Bird List For Hartmann Park Walk @ 24/07/11

Golden Whistler
Tawny Frogmouth - Pair
Noisy Friarbird
Laughing Kookaburra
Striated Pardalote
Red-Browed Finch
Australian Magpie
Yellow-Faced Honeyeater
King Parrot

Grass Wren's?
? Thornbill

Approaching the Creek, ready to cross over to the Walk.

Grass Trees are prolific at Hartmann Park Walk

Beautiful Grass Tree

Miss 7 loved the Colourings on this Mossy Stone.

There was plenty of evidence of nocturnal animals at Hartman Park, possibly Echidna's or Bandicoots

Mealybug spotted by Miss 7 - very impressed with her noticing this one!

Beautiful Coastal Banksia's

Bald Hills Creek, Hartmann Park
The Kids relaxing after the walk and a picnic lunch.

Beautiful Tawny Frogmouth Pair

Purple Flower on a pine tree?
Yellow-Faced Honeyater

Beautiful Golden Whistler

Golden Whistler

Possible Grass Wren?  Differed from the female superb-blue's that we often see.
The Local Koala's Favourite Tree "Forest Red Gum" sign on treeAlas no Koalas seen today at Hartmann Park.

Striated Pardalote

Hartmann Park, Crows Nest, Qld