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TRIP TO MT. BARNEY, August 16, 2008-08-17


Julie Lake led a group of nine birdos on a walk around the base of Mt Barney, starting from the Yellow Pinch car park. Besides Julie the group consisted of Pat, John, Jill, David, Toby and two new birdos, Sandra and Sandy. The morning was spent following a creekline through a variety of habitat from dry, stony ridges through open forest, cleared farmland, tussock grass flats and wet sclerophyll forest verging on rainforest along the creekline.


We stopped for smoko where the track crossed the creek and were delighted to find a pair of scarlet honeyeaters feeding their young in a tiny, purse-like nest suspended in a tall casuarina. Best moment of the day – and definitely best birds of the day – were a pair of glossy black cockatoos feeding in a Casuarina littoralis right on the edge of the track. John and Pat were able to get good photos of these and also of spotted pardalotes going back and forth from their nest in the bank nearby.


We then moved on to Lake Maroon for lunch where the blustering westerly had driven a large number of coots – at least 200 – into a sheltered bay near the picnic ground.


On the way home, Julie, Pat, Jill and John could not resist taking advantage of the last of the golden afternoon light to stop briefly at Fred Buckholtz Park for a look at the waterbirds. This yielded four Australasian shovellers and two Latham’s snipe as well as the usual suspects – and the four dedicated but tired birdos were also rewarded with a glorious view of Tamborine Mountain glowing in the last rays of the sun while an almost full moon sat like a great white balloon just above the rim of the mountain.


TRIP TO MT. BARNEY, August 16, 2008 – BIRD LISTS

Mt. Barney

Wedge tailed eagle                 Noisy friarbird 
Grey butcherbird                      Noisy miner
Striated pardalote                    Spotted pardalote 
Grey fantail                              Grey shrike thrush
White-throated honeyeater     Kookaburra
Torresian crow                         Rainbow bee eater
Mistletoe bird                          Golden whistler
Lewins honeyeater                  Willie wagtail
Red-browed firetail finch         Yellow thornbill
Rose robin                                Black-faced cuckoo shrike
Brown gerygone                       Glossy black cockatoo (pair)
Brown thornbill                         White-browed scrubwren
Yellow robin                              White-browed treecreeeper
Pied currawong

Lake Maroon
Brown honeyeater         Magpie
Masked lapwing   Dusky moorhen
Coot (200+)             Australasian grebe
Torresian crow           Pelican
Welcome swallow

Fred Buckholtz Park/dam
Australasian shoveller Australasian grebe
Latham’s snipe             Intermediate egret
Grey teal                       Hardhead
Black-winged stilt             Welcome swallow
Little black cormorant Little pied cormorant
Black-fronted dotterel         Purple swamphen
Glossy ibis                           Wood duck
Wandering whistling duck Coot
Pacific black duck   Magpie lark


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Why does attentiveness to nature matter? In a very fundamental sense, we are what we pay attention to. Paying heed to beauty, grace, and everyday miracles promotes a sense of possibility and coherence that runs deeper and truer than the often illusory commercial, social "realities" advanced by mainstream contemporary culture. ... Our attention is precious, and what we choose to focus it on has enormous consequences. What we choose to look at, and to listen to--these choices change the world. As Thich Nhat Hanh has pointed out, we become the bad television programs that we watch. A society that expends its energies tracking the latest doings of the celebrity couple is fundamentally distinct from one that watches for the first arriving spring migrant birds, or takes a weekend to check out insects in a mountain stream, or looks inside flowers to admire the marvelous ingenuities involved in pollination. The former tends to drag culture down to its lowest commonalities; the latter can lift us up in a sense of unity with all life. The Way of Natural History, edited by Thomas Lowe Fleischner and published by Trinity University Press (Texas)