28 February 2014

the walk to Pelican Point, and shore-birds....

On the Central Coast, N.S.W.,  Pelican Point is where I hope to see some shore-birds out on the rock shelf there, and I start my walk from Soldiers Beach.  Low tide was scheduled for 11.30 a.m., and it was now almost 2p.m.

A part of this walk, and what I found along the way, I've already shared on my Snap Happy Online post the other day, here.

The wooden stairway with stainless-steel posts and 'ropes' to the right of this photo is where I'm heading now.  Where the green covered sand-hill shows near the middle of the horizon; in front of that is where you can make out the rock-shelf location, with white-capped waves nudging its end.

Nearer to the rock-shelf now, an eclectic mix of wonderful shells and other marine life beg my attention.

I'd meant to bring with me a little tri-leg folding seat with a carry-strap, so I could sit out on the shelf and steady my camera better.  Of course I really thought more about it after I'd left home!

Some distance out there were 'little birds' , so colour-matched to their surrounds, it is only for the darting movements of some, that I have seen them at all.  Not so familiar with shore-birds, I didn't know what they were, but clicked away with my camera to take some evidence home with me.

New addition 10/3:  My birding friend Robyn P., local to the area, has advised me these are Red-necked Stints, (very similar to Sanderlings, but smaller, and that Sanderlings don't seem to gather in that location).  Thanks Robyn for your update, much appreciated.

Birds in Backyards fact-sheet on these migratory waders is here.

They'd obviously had their lunch much earlier when the tide was first down, and now were just settling back and taking it easy, sleeping it off in some instances.

There's some more birds out on the front side of the shelf where I can't venture because of the bigger expanses and depth of  water, but I'll keep those photos for a follow-up post now shall I?  I have to restrain myself and not post 'too much, too soon'.

26 February 2014

Silver Gulls

Standing at the top carpark, Soldiers Beach, looking back towards Norah Head Lighthouse.  There's more photos of this beach and what I found there, on my other blog, Snap Happy Online, titled Ocean Walk Yesterday.

     o.k. so they might be in the 'dime a dozen' category, but the Silver Gull always cuts a fine profile.

late night was it?

***  P.S. ***  I wanted to share a chuckle with my blog readers before it gets lost in my archives - some of you who haven't seen the previous post Little Black Cormorants (and a little surprise), hope you'll check it out.

I anticipated as I worked on it, putting a smile on your face; let me know won't you?  :)

Sharing this, with Wild Bird Wednesday

23 February 2014

Little Black Cormorants (with a little surprise)

Remember the recent nodding White-faced Heron?

Well, here we are, you and me, back at the same place, same afternoon, this time it's all for the Little Black Cormorants.

 there's a water-taxi coming?

 which side then?

think this' them now....

yep; we're on our way boys

Sharing with Our World Tuesday

22 February 2014

a word from your hostess, Carole M.

If I don't spread the word every now and then, that I'll be dropping the occasional post over on my other little blog-spot, Snap Happy Online, you will never know.  

It's where you'll find the occasional post that is non-bird related.

That's what happens when you go changing the name of your blog to Snap Happy Birding;  I put myself into a tight corner!!  Maybe I should've decided on just Snap Happy, and that would've covered the lot.

However, I'm more than happy to segregate the two, and hope you'll visit my other blog too, sign up if you choose (I hope), and come share this little adventure with me won't you?

Today's post when you click on over to Snap Happy Online is:  Sssssh...and listen to nature

21 February 2014

have you seen this video .. the Squirrel and Hawk?

Sent to me today, I know it will be one many of you also, will marvel at the amazing photography and sequences of nature at large.

20 February 2014

Black-winged Stilt

there is a single Black-winged Stilt by the edge there near centre of photo (a little white dot for now)

a migratory wader

another area, near the bird-hide, Black-winged Stilts with Red-necked Avocets

Fact-sheet on the Black-winged Stilt from Birds in Backyards
Location: Sydney Olympic Park

18 February 2014

...so what makes for a great bird hide?

Located at Sydney Olympic Park; it looks great, fits into the environment so well, is well constructed and sturdy, with plenty of very informative, framed posters inside.

So keen to line up in front of the best height window for me, feeling almost as if any bird out there might be gone before I managed to zoom out onto the wetlands, that I totally forgot to take any photos of the inside.

So, what was out there?  I certainly wasn't expecting what I did see at x50 through my viewfinder; lots of wonderful Red-necked Avocets mostly; such a treat!

Signage read in part, that this refuge was created in the 1950's as a result of unfinished works to reclaim land from estuarine mudflats.

Tidal flushing was reintroduced to this Waterbird Refuge in 2007 through a solar powered gate, programmed to open and close automatically.

Tidal exchange normally occurs twice daily, with maximum and minimum levels controlled by gate settings that are changed seasonally.

These seasonal changes in water height are required for nutrient inflow and can be used to set boundaries between different habitats.

 Australian native, Red-necked Avocet

 according to Birds in Backyards, the curvature of the beak is more pronounced in the male

with some headless, Grey Teals I'm assuming

Sharing with Nature Notes
Wild Bird Wednesday

17 February 2014

Superb Fairy Wren

These delightful little birds flit about so quickly, it's very challenging to fit one in your camera frame before it's moved on again.  This day, I was only able to get this quick-pic of the male when they ventured into the back garden. 

Not exactly the angle I was hoping for as I hit the shutter, but it is the sweetest tail isn't it?

...a female (Jenny) wren, or possibly a juvenile.

after the brief sojourn in the back gardens, then they were back into the bush corridor again. 


15 February 2014

White Ibis

Location: Sydney Olympic Park

the bigger picture

White Ibis at waters edge, centre.

Feeding by the Samphire (an older post) - did you know it's a delicacy?

Same day, in the same location, and after a lot of walking, there were historic shipwrecks to be found. 

If you'd like to see them too, I've just made a new post, Historic Shipwrecks of Homebush Bay on Snap Happy Online (my non-birding blog).  Hope you'll visit there too, it's just a little click away.

12 February 2014

White-faced Heron

...have you ever been a passenger in a vehicle on a long-haul drive?  At some point, maybe after a lunch stop, feeling comfy when you step back in the car, ready for the new scenery ahead.

The sun is shining through the glass and suddenly, your eyelids start feeling like they've got lead sinkers on them.  You try so hard to keep focused; but in the end it's easier to succumb!

I think this is where the White-faced Heron is going.  Taken late afternoon, this week, down by the Wyong River.

....going, g-o-i-n-g

OOPS, gone!

Sharing with Wild Bird Wednesday

11 February 2014


There is a family of three Magpies frequent the garden, though now it seems most often it will just be the juvenile spends most time here

another of the big plus' having the birds in your gardens - Magpie has found a Curl Grub; a win-win there for both of us.

 comical glance at me as I sat just outside the back door with my camera

 mostly preferring to drink from this very shallow dish, which was meant for the Superb Fairy Wrens.  

 and singing nicely

Birds in Backyards fact sheet is here; you can listen to the wonderful call of the Magpie (see mp3 player).  I'm really curious;  do Magpies in other parts of the world sound similar?

It is written there that an uncommon name for the Magpie, is the Flute-bird - and it is so apt really, though I'd never heard that reference before.

back for a drink later in the afternoon

Sharing with Nature Notes

09 February 2014

Little Pied Cormorant

at the bottom of a steep road there is lake access at Brightwaters Park, so I decided to go on down and see what there was to see; I might get lucky

there was just one lone Little Pied Cormorant out there, and looking not so pristine 

Twenty kilometres further around the lake at Wangi-Wangi, I spotted another, Little Pied Cormorant.  It was middle of the day, and the sun was hot.  

Those webbed feet look quite awkward for perching like this, but maybe they have even more stability?