The results from the September Orange-bellied Parrot survey were disappointing.
No birds were reported at all on the Bellarine Peninsula, nor were there sightings in West Gippsland, south-west Victoria or south-east South Australia during the survey weekend. However, on a more optimistic note, Stephen Mallick, the acting, communications co-ordinator of the National OBP Recovery Team, revealed that two adult OBPs were seen at Melaleuca, in south-west Tasmania on the afternoon of 28 September, and a third adult was sighted the next morning. They were all banded, wild-bred birds – two, four year old females and a three year old male. The Recovery team is planning to release more captive birds to bolster the breeding effort at Melaleuca this spring.
Other interesting sightings made throughout the Bellarine survey area include:
- A Striated Fieldwren carrying food into saltmarsh shrubs presumably to feed nestlings.
- A Golden-headed Cisticola was also carrying food.
- White-bellied Sea Eagles were seen at two locations, and
- A Peregrine Falcon harassing a Caspian Tern was observed at Avalon salt works.
This information was taken from the ‘’Occasional Orange-bellied Parrot Newsletter September 2014” provided by Craig Morley.
A juvenile Calidris canutus Red Knot was seen at the Anglesea River. Tom Fletcher confirmed the identification, and mentioned that a probable Red Knot had also been seen with a flock of Golden Plover, around Black Rocks, and its possible it could be the same bird. Either way, he says, it is a most interesting record for Anglesea River. The Red Knot breeds in Eastern Siberia and the Arctic tundra, and is a summer migrant to coastal Australia, from September to March. It feeds in soft, tidal mud and sand. Margaret Lacey, who made the first sighting of the bird on the Anglesea River, took the photo.
While playing golf at Anglesea, some people caught a glimpse of a small animal as it ran across a pathway in front of them. After advice, they believe it was a Swamp Rat. It ran into some clumps of bracken, and had quite likely been disturbed by vegetation clearing in areas of the golf course.
There appears to be a plague of Bogong Moths, particularly around Aireys Inlet and Fairhaven, and as well, large numbers of the moths are scattered all along the beach.
Bluebottle jellyfish, more often referred to as Bluebottles, have been found washed onto the beach at Anglesea. They have stinging tentacles, which envelop their prey, and a poison is released to paralyse the victim, which is often small fish or other small ocean creatures.
A Hooded Plover count is held every two years, and this year it is planned for the weekend of 15 & 16 November. Volunteers are needed to take part in the count, by walking along a stretch of beach and observing and recording data on hoodies and other beach-nesting birds. The sections from Anglesea to Spout Creek are:
- Anglesea River to Point Roadknight and Urquhart Bluff
- Urquhart Bluff to Aireys Inlet (Painkalac Creek)
- Aireys Inlet (Painkalac Creek) to Moggs Creek
- Moggs Creek to Eastern View (Spout Creek)
Anyone interested in participating in the count, contact Andrea Dennett: email@example.com