The survey is conducted on a monthly basis and so far, the group has identified over 150 bird species associated with the reserve. The bird tracks of Kumbartcho meander through forest, open pasture and riverine habitats and provide wonderful opportunities for people to get out exercise and take in some of nature’s gifts. On the day, many bird enthusiasts or “twitchers” as they are known gather in order to document the species seen on the day. Starting at 7.30 am, they make their way along the pathways, binoculars at the ready and their attention focused on the many bird calls resonating in the area.
There were the unmistakeable calls of the Eastern Whipbird and the Lewins Honeyeater as well as a number of aquatic birds in display including a Royal Spoonbill and Pacific Black Ducks. Along the reeds were the darting forms of wrens, honeyeaters and finches along with the sometimes more sedate (that is stationary) Striated Pardalote. In the end 66 species of birds were observed and 5 more heard. Perhaps the highlight of the day was the emergence of an Owlet Nightjar from its hollow.
The morning was about the chance to enjoy the local wildlife as well as enjoy the company of so many enthusiasts. The chance to share stories and make some personal observations about various birds was ongoing during the walk; and the morning tea afterwards provided the opportunity to collate all of the observations. Kumbartcho may be for the birds but is also for the birdwatchers!
For further information on bird surveys at Hays Inlet go to https://www.redenviroforum.org/bird-surveys.html