Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Canning River Regional Park - Yellow-billed spoonbill

I visited the Canning River Regional Park last Saturday. For birdwatching, I wasn't as impressed with the park as I was with the Herdsman Lake. At Canning River, waterbirds didn't seem to hang around much. I have seen some ducks, a few cormorants (little black and great cormorants), an Australian white ibis, a purple swamphen, a few dusky moorhens, a few spotted doves, and rock doves.

The highlight has to be watching three yellow-billed spoonbills flying around high above in the sky. It was pointless to snap it considering the limited zooming power of my camera. I watched them through my binoculars and can only tell you they looked so beautiful when they were flying.

It is possible that I arrive at the park at midday, hence most of the birds have vanished from sight. At Herdsman Lake, birds seem to hang around the whole day, and so it really doesn't matter if you visit Herdsman Lake at midday.

Anyway, I also came across a very cooperative yellow-billed spoonbill that kept perching on a dead tree a short distance away - for almost 10 minutes I think. And so I could snap away at my heart's content!

Two indications that the bird is in the middle of a breeding season - outer wing plumes that were tipped black and long hackles on the upper breast.

Scratching its armpit!? Apparently birds don't need to have a pointed bill to preen their feathers.

That bill looks just like the wooden spoon in my kitchen.

The few yellow-billed spoonbills that I have bumped into before were quite camera-shy but this one was happy to pose in front of my camera. Photographing this spoonbill was the other highlight of my trip to the Canning River Regional Park.

1 comment:

Mark Young said...

G'day Chai,

I love your Spoonbill piccies. I wish I could get that close to one.