It pays to take a closer look

A concentration of birds on one of the mud islands in the Joyce’s Creek reach of Cairn Curran caught my attention earlier in the week.

Upon closer inspection with the camera, at a distance of ~ 150 metres, there was a bit to see, including a couple of rare visitors.

Australian Pelicans, Black Swans and a mix of ducks – Pacific Black Ducks, Wood Ducks, and Australian Shelducks caught my eye and then a nice surprise – a pair of Plumed Whistling Ducks.

Plumed Whistling Ducks Dendrocygna eytoni are infrequent visitors to the district. They are typically found further north, often in large flocks on irrigation country throughout the Murray Darling Basin and north into the tropics. They are a distinctive and beautiful duck, standing erect and showing off handsome cream plumes along their flanks. I’ve seen them only a handful of times in recent years but suspect they’ll be observed more often in the future.

Australian Pelican, Cairn Curran Reservoir, 20th January 2019

II

A Black Swan event?

Plumed Whistling Ducks and Pacific Black Ducks

5 responses to “It pays to take a closer look

  1. These are the best photos of the whistling ducks. What beautiful and unusual birds
    Sue Lanchester woodend nth.

    Sent from my iPad

  2. What a lucky sighting! Perhaps lucky is not the right word as you study the area around you pretty darned well and so should pick up anything new and unusual. Good photo too.

  3. Hi Geoff
    Whistling ducks may be more common in southern Victoria than you might think – I recall seeing them regularly around Willaura in the early 2000s provided there was water in the swamps – not sure whether they are still about in that district.

    cheers

    Allan

  4. Agree Allan, but not in the Newstead district. Growing up around Ararat and Lake Bolac I recall seeing them from time to time also. In this area their arrival has usually coincided with good rain 2010/11 and 2015 were the last couple of times. All the best, geoff

  5. George Broadway

    Well done Geoff.
    Another addition to the photogallery of birds of the Shire

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