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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Western Circuit Walk and Permanent Waterhole, Sundown National Park, QLD.

Western Circuit Walk, Sundown National Park.
While camping in The Broadwater Camping Area in Sundown National Park we did the short Permanent Waterhole Walk and the Western Circuit Walk. The trail-head for the walks can be found at the far end of the campground where there is an information hut.

Information Hut and walk trail-head at The Broadwater Camping Area.

Permanent Waterhole Walk: Class 3, 2 km return. 
Permanent Waterhole is a popular swimming hole.

Permanent Waterhole
Western Circuit Walk: Class 3, 4.5 km return.
We found this walk to be easy, enjoyable and very exciting for bird-watching. The walk meanders through a forest of cypress pines where we saw many striped honeyeaters foraging in the tree tops.

Cypress Pine Forest
Striped Honeyeater
Eastern Grey Kangaroos and Red-necked Wallabies were easy to spot amongst the cedar pines.

Eastern Grey Kangaroo
Red-necked Wallaby.
As we emerged from the cedar pine forest into mixed eucalypt forest there was more variety in the birds we saw. 

Red-capped Robin
We were pleased to see White-browed Babblers as well as Grey-crowned Babblers.

White-browed Babbler
Grey-crowned Babblers
We passed a number of large cactus in fruit as we gently climbed to higher open ground. Here we found great views to the south and west over Sundown National Park.

Cactus fruit.
Views over Sundown National Park.
Jackie Winters and White-winged Choughs were present. 

Jacky Winter
Restless Flycatchers, White-plumed Honeyeaters, Golden and Rufous Whistlers all made an appearance,

White-plumed Honeyeater
Golden Whistler
As we descended to the open flats we started to see Red-rumped Parrots, Eastern Rosellas, Pale-headed Rosellas and Barr-shouldered Pigeons. There were also a number of birds about that were hybrid Eastern Rosellas and Pale-headed Rosellas. Every time we saw a turquoise flash we were hopeful of seeing a Turquoise Parrot but all our sightings turned out to be male Red-rumped Parrots.

Entering parrot habitat.
Red-rumped Parrot, male.
Red-rumped Parrot, female.
On the walk we saw one red deer and about twenty goats. National Parks Queensland is closing the park in May 2018 for feral pest eradication so check the Alerts section online before planning a trip to Sundown National Park.

Wildlife List: Eastern Grey Kangaroo, Red-necked Wallaby, Feral Goat, Feral Red Deer, Lace Monitor, Copper-tailed Skink, Eastern Water Dragon, Micro Bats (type unknown). Joseph Coat Moth. Butterflies: Common Brown, Common Crow, Common Grass-blue, Common Plane, Monarch, Orchard Swallowtail. 
Birds: Apostlebird, Grey-crowned Babbler, White-browed Babbler, Whistling Kite, Pacific Bazza, Grey Butcherbird, White-winged Chough, Little Corella, Pallid Cuckoo, White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike, Torresian Crow, Pied Currawong, Pacific Black Duck, Bar-shouldered Dove, Spangled Drongo, Superb Fairy-wren, Grey Fantail, Diamond Firetail, Restless Flycatcher, Little Friarbird, White-faced Heron, Striped Honeyeater, Blue-faced Honeyeater, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, White-plumed Honeyeater, Jacky Winter, Common Koel, Laughing Kookaburra, Australian Magpie, Magpie-lark, Noisy Miner, Mistletoebird, Nightjar (unsure of type), Olive-backed Oriole, Australian King Parrot, Red-rumped Parrot, Pheasant Coucal, Red-capped Robin, Eastern Yellow Robin, Eastern Rosella, Pale-headed Rosella, Hybrid: Eastern Rosella x Pale-headed Rosella, White-browed Scrubwren, Silvereye, Welcome Swallow, Yellow-rumped Thornbill, Brown Treecreeper, White-throated Treecreeper, Golden Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Willie Wagtail.

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