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2012-06 npcedar-ck1633 The September nature walk on the afternoon of Wednesday, September 5 attracted a record 15 participants – there were more people than birds!

We parked down at Cedar Creek and before heading down towards the waterfall we first rambled up the road as far as the creek, looking at the forest on our right. Though this yielded a couple of bird species there was more interest on the left hand side of the road where in one garden we saw a pair of pale-headed rosellas and in the next garden a pair of brush bronzewings and about 15 plumed whistling ducks. Also some HUGE domestic turkeys, chickens and a peacock. Our assumption was that the food being given to the home birds was attracting wild birds to mix in with them. As far as we know (and going by the NHA records) this is the first sighting of whistling ducks on the mountain.

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Report

brush cuckoo2Other birds observed during the day included crimson rosellas, spotted and striated pardalotes, the inevitable noisy miners, pacific black duck, eastern whipbird, grey butcherbird, currawongs, magpie, lewin's honeyeater, grey fantail, black-faced cuckoo-shrike, kookaburra, rainbow lorikeets and a brush cuckoo.

pinky.resizedThe keener-eyed members of the group spotted orchids in full flower on the rocks across the gorge; Susan kindly took the trouble to confirm that these were lily of the valley (Australorchis monophylla) and pink rock orchids (Thelichiton kingianus). Julie took a photo of the latter and though the distance was too great for a clear picture, we've published it here so people can get an idea of what to look for.

 

As always, a pleasant afternoon in good company. However, as walk leader Julie would like to note that we are not observing nearly as many birds (or anything else much) on the afternoon walks as we do in the morning, possibly because we are walking too early. Except for June and July, afternoon walks might be more productive if we go from four to six pm rather than two to four pm. It's just too hot still, in the middle of the afternoon, for birds to be very active.

2012-06 npcedar-ck1631Walk Leader: Julie Lake              Map Location: Cedar Creek Falls Road

 

 

 

 

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Copies of the excellent & definitive “ The Mistletoes of Subtropical Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria” by local authors John Moss & Ross Kendall now on sale at $27.50 from Mike Russell (5545 3601).

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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)