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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Lake Broadwater Conservation Park, QLD.

Lake Broadwater
We moved the short distance from Wilga Bush Camping Area to the Lake Broadwater Recreation Area Campground in Lake Broadwater Conservation Park. We set up further away from the amenities and overlooking the lake. There was quite a strong wind coming off the lake but we weren't complaining as we no longer had those pesky flies we encountered at Wilga Bush Campground. We woke up to fabulous sunrise views in the mornings.

Sunrise from our campsite at Lake Broadwater
There were large flocks of Little Corellas in the campground and a few Sulphur-crested Cockatoos.
Little Corellas and a Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
There is an easy bushwalk from the recreation area campground to Wilga Bush Camp. I think it is approximately 4 km return. 

Walking trail between the two campgrounds at Lake Broadwater.
We saw a great variety of birds on the walk. A Pallid Cuckoo was of particular interest to us as we have never seen one before.

Pallid Cuckoo
Whistling Kite, White-throated Gerygone and Red-winged Parrots.
We were excited to see a Yellow-spotted Monitor. These goannas are distinctly different from the more common Lace Monitors and they can be confused with sand goannas. Update: We sent our photos to the QLD Museum for confirmation however, after five weeks they had not replied. I have since sent the photos to Gunther Schmida who has confirmed that this is a Yellow-spotted Monitor (sometimes known as an Argus Monitor) Varanus panoptes

Yellow-spotted Monitor Varanus panoptes
In the opposite direction from the recreation area there is an elevated bird hide overlooking “The Neck” of the lake. There weren’t many birds on the lake while we were there; mostly Eurasian Coots.

Bird Hide at Lake Broadwater

View from the bird hide.
There is a self-drive track further along from the bird hide. Be warned, the loop section of the track requires a high clearance vehicle.

Varied Eggfly, female, Hypolimnas bolina
We did quite a bit of walking in the Conservation Park and were rewarded with close up views of a large and healthy looking Shingleback.

Shingleback Tiliqua rugosa aspera

Details for Lake Broadwater Recreation Area Campground in Lake Broadwater Conservation Park, QLD:
Facilities: Two amenities blocks with flush toilets (one with hot showers, one with cold showers), bins, tank water, variable phone reception, TV reception, gas BBQ’s, fireplaces, picnic shelters and tables.
Campsites: Large campground that is popular even during the week. Grassy areas with some trees. No defined sites. No power.
Fees: $6 per adult, self-register, no bookings.

Wildlife List: Grey Kangaroo, Yellow-spotted Monitor Varanus panoptes, Shingleback Tiliqua rugosa aspera, Dwarf Tree Frog
Butterflies: Orchard Swallowtail, Caper White, Meadow Argus, Varied Eggfly and some Yellows.
Birdlist: Apostlebird, Grey-crowned Babbler, Whistling Kite, Pied Butcherbird, Cockatiel, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Little Corella, Galah, Eurasian Coot, Pallid Cuckoo, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Pied Currawong, Torresian Crow, Pacific Black Duck, Australian Wood Duck, Grey Teal, Peaceful Dove, Variegated Fairy-wren, Grey Fantail, Double-barred Finch, Restless Flycatcher, Little Friarbird, White-throated Gerygone, White-necked Heron, White-faced Heron, Scarlet Honeyeater, Sacred Kingfisher, Rainbow Lorikeet, Scaly-breasted Lorikeet, Australian Magpie, Magpie-lark, Noisy Miner, Australian King Parrot, Red-winged Parrot, Crested Pigeon, Grey Shrike-thrush, Silvereye, House Sparrow, Buff-rumped Thornbill, Golden Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Willie Wagtail.


  1. Nice photos, love the shingleback! I believe the Varanid in question is unfortunately Varanus gouldii, or Sand Monitor-The best indications are the lacking of spots on the neck (characteristic of Yellow Spotted) and a pale cream tail-although I have found the tail to be largely innaccurate though, as both can have pale tails. :)

    1. Update: Ollie we sent our photos to the QLD Museum for identification but they didn't reply so we sent them to Gunther Schmida who confirmed that the monitor is a Yellow-spotted. So I'm going to stick with that ID. I have long been a fan of Gunther's work with reptiles and fresh water fish. His photography is outstanding. I had the advantage of seeing the monitor in the field which is a great help and we have photos that show the feet and tail in more detail which also helps with the ID, whereas you only had the one photo to go on which makes things more challenging.

  2. Thanks for your input Ollie. We are on the road so I don't have access to my books. Interesting point you made about the neck spots. I'll look into this further when I get the chance.