At any time when we go to Geikie Gorge we make a detour to go to the Low stage crossing at Fitzroy Crossing if the climate permits. Having noticed the gorgeous Purple-crowned Fairy-wrens in Geikie Gorge we hoped so as to add one other hen species to our 2022 12 months listing. There have been a whole lot of modifications over latest years on the low stage crossing and after some critical erosion just a few years in the past the observe all the way down to the river was closed to autos. The crossing itself remains to be holding up, so you’ll be able to stroll down the dusty observe and observe the bird-life up and down stream. Since I final wrote concerning the crossing in 2015 now we have visited yearly and as you’ll be able to think about there’s at all times one thing new to see. At completely different occasions of 12 months there are completely different birds to see and the water stage is extraordinarily variable. By September every year it’s normally at its lowest stage and on this latest go to it was already previous 1pm and a scorching and dry 43c.
As you’ll be able to see within the header photograph it’s now fairly a steep and dusty descent to the Fitzroy River. When it is rather scorching it’s a must to put on closed-in footwear otherwise you danger burning your ft. There have been quite a few Black Kites and Whistling Kites hovering within the thermals over the river. We might hear Gray-crowned Babblers within the dense bush as we made our method down.
Fitzroy River from the low stage bridge
The primary birds that we noticed have been Straw-necked Ibis ingesting on the river after which Magpie-larks and Black-fronted Dotterels. A number of bushes have been in flower they usually have been attracting Little Friarbirds, Rufous-throated Honeyeaters, White-gaped Honeyeaters and Yellow-tinted Honeyeaters. Fairy Martins have been dipping into the water and in addition Rainbow Bee-eaters swooped down catching bugs and returning to perch on the branches overhanging the river. There was fairly a raucous sound and the Sulphur-crested Cockatoos have been within the bushes and coming all the way down to drink.
We wandered throughout the low stage bridge to see what was beside the water in every path and shortly added Brolga, Peaceable Doves, Little Pied Cormorants, Masked Lapwings and Bar-shouldered Doves to the listing for the situation. There have been different raptors together with Brown Falcon and Brown Goshawk. Wanting again in the direction of the bushes we quickly observed extra birds together with Lengthy-tailed Finch, Rufous Whistler, Yellow-throated Miner, Paperbark Flycatcher, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Nice Bowerbird and White-winged Triller. I had observed a really small pool of water that was attracting the Double-barred Finch and I might hear one thing else within the close by dense bushes. It didn’t take lengthy and instantly there have been Star Finch on the fringe of the pool ingesting. We hadn’t noticed Star Finch but in 2022, so standing out within the solar was price it! The Star Finch knew the way to cool off!
When the Star Finch bathed they virtually grew to become invisible till they stood up and their pink payments gave them away.
Star Finch and Double-barred Finch bathing and ingesting
As we climbed again up the steep dusty slope to the automobile we observed we have been being watched by a few agile wallabies. They have been staying within the shade for apparent causes and as soon as the daylight began to fade they might make their method all the way down to the water to drink.
The climate will be difficult at the very best of occasions, however the rewards for venturing out in the midst of the day may also be rewarding. Most of the finch species have to drink all through the day and if you may as well try this in acceptable clothes and footwear you might nicely observe a hen species you haven’t seen but this 12 months.