Shoalhaven Mid-week Birding

Mon 02 February 2015 11:30am

Jean Casburn and Sue Lashko

This mid-week trip is designed to give participants the opportunity to visit several birding spots in the Shoalhaven
area. Further details will be available developed closer to February, depending on bird migration and weather.
The trip will be limited to 14 people and accommodation or camping will be at Shoalhaven Heads Tourist Park, located
between the Shoalhaven River and Seven Mile Beach – see Participants will
be asked to book their own accommodation, but any wishing to share cabins will be matched up if possible. Booking is
recommended after registering in December, to ensure the best accommodation.
Leaders will be Sue Lashko and Jean Casburn. Contact for bookings is

Post event report

A contingent of COG birders spent the week at Shoalhaven Heads managing to locate around 130 species. Thanks to the excellent organisation from Jean Casburn and Sue Lashko, we stayed in a fabulous spot on the Shoalhaven River with a variety of waders just a few paces away from our doors and Square-tailed Kites gliding overhead. The group visited a number of wader spots including Lake Wollumboola, Orient Point and Shoalhaven Heads. Having experienced wader watchers, Sue Lashko and Steve Holliday, made checking out the waders a real pleasure and their patience in educating many of us on what to look for in waders and how to identify them was greatly appreciated.

With Sue and Steve on the spotting scopes we had excellent views of the White-rumped Sandpiper (reported at Lake Wollumboola in January and still there) which was new for many of us, as well as Sharp-tailed Sandpipers, Red Knots and White-winged Black Terns.  There was also one each of Great Knot, Curlew Sandpiper, Grey Plover, Lesser Sand Plover and Double-banded Plover.   A flock of Little Terns was studied in great detail and there was much debate over a lone possible Fairy Tern. Large groups of Golden Plover, Red-necked Stint and Bar-tailed Godwit created entertainment as they wheeled about, round and round, trying to decide whether they were game to land so close to Geoffrey Dabb’s humungous camera lens.

We did a number of spectacular walks in Nowra along Bomaderry Creek and Nowra Creek. The habitat ranged from lowland rainforest with sandstone outcrops to casuarina and eucalypt woodland. Birding highlights included Green Catbird, Rockwarbler, Black-faced Monarch and a Rufous Fantail on a nest, ably spotted by Duncan.

We ventured into the heath at a number of spots in Booderee National Park and after much searching had excellent views of Eastern Bristlebird. Prue got the best bird watchers’ technique award by lingering at the back of the group and spotting various target species that popped out after we had all moved off. This included a Chestnut-rumped Heathwren. The day in Booderee was topped off with a White-cheeked Honeyeater at the botanic gardens.

A sociable time was had with drinks every evening and a communal meal on the Tuesday night where we feasted on home-made goodies and ate way too much!  Of course, I can’t resist mentioning COG’s very own Masterchef, Mr Geoffrey Dabb, who entertained us with a cooking demonstration of elaborate hors d’oeuvres involving a csabai and a cucumber waved around suggestively. Having stimulated our imaginations, the meal moved onto a spectacular array of BBQ, salads and desserts.

Kathy Walter

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