Easter campout – private property near Holbrook

Fri 03 April 2015 09:00am

Sandra Henderson

The Easter campout will be on private property, 10 km north of Holbrook and 3 hours from Canberra. Almost all of the property is protected by an in-perpetuity conservation covenant through the Nature Conservation Trust of NSW.  Two adjacent properties are also protected with covenants, making a total of ~550ha of protected woodland and forest.  They sit directly between two significant nature reserves in the region – Livingstone National Park to the north and Morgans Ridge Nature Reserve to the south (which in turn is just above Woomargama National Park).  With decent scattered tree cover still remaining in much of the landscape in between, this makes the properties and national parks part of an important north-south set of linked habitats.  The property is a mixture of dry forest and grassy woodland, with the intergrade areas relatively healthy and the true valley-bottom grassy woodland areas in early-mid recovery stages.

Further details will be emailed to participants.  There will be a maximum of 15 participants. contact Sandra Henderson on shirmax2931@gmail.com

Post event report

Fifteen members of COG joined fellow COG members Veronica and Erik Doerr, their daughter Zoe and border collie Katie for COG’s Easter camp on the Doerr’s conservation property near Holbrook. It was especially pleasing that long-time COG members June and Peter Gotham, now of Wangaratta, could join us. A few showers over Easter (especially rain on the final morning) dampened things a little, but the good company and excellent birding ensured everyone had a good time.

The property yielded 63 species within easy walking distance of our campsite, including numerous Restless Flycatchers and White-crowned Babblers. Visitors to the campsite itself included Crested Shrike-tit, Varied Sittella, Owlet-nightjar, Common Bronzewing, Scarlet Robin and Mistletoebird. Up to nine Diamond Firetails were seen at once on the dam adjacent to the camp, and a host of honeyeaters appeared in the flowering eucalypts, including manyYellow-tufted Honeyeaters.

The first of the scheduled outings was to Woomargama National Park. Unfortunately there had been extensive controlled burning very recently, so further plans for that area were abandoned. A short walk along Tin Mines Road did produce Gang-gang Cockatoos, Golden Whistlers, Fuscous Honeyeaters and several thornbill species, among others, to add to our bird list for the trip.

Lunch sitting by the Murray River in a TSR just beyond the southern border of the Park produced a White-bellied Sea-eagle, but the presence of several groups of campers, complete with revving utes and chainsaws, stifled plans for an after-lunch walk.

On Easter Sunday we made our way to Morgans Lookout near Culcairn, the hideout of bushranger Dan Morgan and his gang in the 1860s. The lookout is a granite outcrop with some nice woodland close by, and is a reliable Brown Treecreeper site. Other birds sighted by at least some of the party included Diamond Firetail, Collared Sparrowhawk, Cockatiel, Restless Flycatcher and Nankeen Kestrel.

Sunday afternoon saw a few more of the group catch up with some elusiveRed-capped Robins on the Doerr’s property, as well as Speckled Warbler.

The trip list (property and outings) reached 105 species.

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