Continuing our journey inland to the central south west we make our way to Russell Falls in Mt Field National Park. This beautiful Brown Falcon watched us as we stopped for a break along the way.
Before I move on I need to show the distinction between these two birds we saw the previous two days on Bruny Island, as they easily bring confusion with identification without attention to detail. The Scarlet Robin and Flame Robin males were both seen. Note the black hood of the Scarlet and larger white patch on the forehead.
It was a hot day and the walk in the cool rainforest was a refreshing treat, not to mention the cool spray from the waterfall, which was roaring in all its splendour.
As we walked back from the falls a little bird stopped to look us over, in a similar way to the eastern Yellow Robin from back home, and to our great delight it was another lifer, the Dusky Robin which is endemic to Tasmania. We followed the bird as it moved along the track looking for insects. It reminded us of its eastern yellow cousin in its ‘robinly’ mannerisms.
After much driving we finally arrived at Lake St Clare National Park where we were to stay the night. This is the end point of the world famous Overland Track which starts at Cradle Mountain ( which you will see in a later post). People travel from all over the world to walk this 5 day trek, we decided we were not up to it and our time frame did not allow it. We saw two Tiger Snakes while we were there, thankfully they passed us by uneventfully. It was so peaceful staying by the lake in the national park, in such a beautiful location, where bird song continually surrounded you.
On arrival at our cabin this was the very first greeting we received. I had to grab my camera to catch it. It was to be another lifer, The Black Currawong, which was to be our primary amusement throughout the rest of our time in Tasmania. Its sound was so different to our Pied Currawong back home. This one sounded like a trumpet, and you could hear them calling to each other in the forests where ever we went.
My Bird of the Week – The Black Currawong
The Black Currawong is only found in Tasmania, in the sub-alpine and woodland areas. It is more predominant in the higher central areas during the summer months and is also found on Maria Island. During winter they move to lower woodlands and open country. They feed on small birds, reptiles, mice, insects, berries, fruit and road kill. It uses its huge strong beak to pry under bark on trees for insects and grubs. It is very similar to the Grey Currawong, which we sighted later in our travels on Maria Island (another lifer). They build a large bowl shaped nest in tree forks of rough bulky sticks lined with rootlets, grass and bark. Like the other Currawongs and the Magpie, they protect their young from human approach. It is called the Black Currawong but it does have white patches on the tip of its tail and a small white patch on the wings, and is less pied in appearance then the mainland Pied Currawong.
The following morning we set out on the Platypus Bay Track walk, which is a short walk of a couple of hours, before we leave for the west coast. On the walk we found the Black-headed Honeyeater (endemic to Tasmania).
The Satin Flycatcher sat high in the tall eucalypts of the forest walk, resting from the heat of the day enjoying a break from its very active pursuit of insects. First we saw the female with her buff breast and then the black breasted male nearby.
We spent some time watching the antics of this Yellow Wattlebird move among the trees.
Other birds seen include the Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Green Rosella and Tasmanian Thornbill. We did hear and see other birds high in the tall eucalypts but they were not photographable. After our walk we drove a long and windy road to Strahan on the wild west coast, where the following day (featured in our next post) we will take a cruise on the famous Gordon River which flows into the huge Macquarie Harbour. We will also be visiting Sarah Island. This is all for now, have a great week!
“Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me . [one trouble upon another comes upon me, yet I am not overwhelmed or drowned by the deluge!]
Because each day the Lord pours his unfailing love upon me,
and each night I [continue to] sing his songs,
praying to God who gives me life [in rich abundance].“ – Psalm 42: 7-8 [with interpretive additions]
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