Andy's Blogs

Cairns trip June 2013

June, 2013 - QLD

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Barron Falls National Park


After taking advantage of Jet-Star cheap air-fare I headed off to the tropics and Cairns. On the Sunday night BBQ at Triniy beach I was made aware of the Mareeba Wetlands and told that this place would have me snapping away all day with many new birds for my personal tally.  

After years of planning and fundraising by the Wildlife Conservancy of Tropical Queensland, 2002 saw the first release of Gouldian Finches back into the wild. This initial release was undertaken as a pilot study in order to assess the release strategy and affects on the birds. This approach successfully identified a number of important factors capable of influencing the success of future releases. Although not an initial success, seven chicks were fledged in the wild from these released birds.

The birds were tracked using Holohil LB-2 radio transmitters to monitor their movements and habitat use and the results were used to identify the strategy for our second release in May 2003. I believe that for many years since 2003 there have been many Finches released in to the wild.

I felt I was seeing things when two of the birds were on a bush not more the 15 yards away. I managed one shot and off they went. What a great place to visit.

I also made a few visits to the Cattana Wetlands which is around 80 hectares of degraded land which Council has rehabilitated into a nature conservation park.    It's situated off Dunne Road in Smithfield, accessed by either Yorkeys Knob Road or McGregor Road, approximately 20km north of the CBD.

Associated Photos

Spectacled MonarchSpectacled Monarch
Pheasant Coucal Pheasant Coucal
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike White-bellied Cuckoo-shri
Olive-backed SunbirdOlive-backed Sunbird
Comb-Crested JacanaComb-Crested Jacana
Brown Falcon Brown Falcon
Gouldian FinchGouldian Finch
White-winged TrillerWhite-winged Triller
Double-barred FinchDouble-barred Finch
Australasian DarterAustralasian Darter
Forest KingfisherForest Kingfisher
Pale-Yellow RobinPale-Yellow Robin
Bower's Shrike-thrushBower's Shrike-thrush
Little Shrike-thrushLittle Shrike-thrush
Broad-billed FlycatcherBroad-billed Flycatcher
Bush-stone CurlewBush-stone Curlew
Broad-billed FlycatcherBroad-billed Flycatcher
Scarlet HoneyeaterScarlet Honeyeater
Scarlet HoneyeaterScarlet Honeyeater
Double-barred FinchDouble-barred Finch
Little Shrike-thrushLittle Shrike-thrush
Pheasant Coucal Pheasant Coucal
Black Butcherbird Black Butcherbird
Comb-Crested JacanaComb-Crested Jacana
Cotton Pygmy-gooseCotton Pygmy-goose
Leaden FlycatcherLeaden Flycatcher
Brown HoneyeaterBrown Honeyeater
Spangled Drongo Spangled Drongo
Little Shrike-thrushLittle Shrike-thrush
Olive-backed Oriole Olive-backed Oriole
Masked Lapwing Masked Lapwing
Little EgretLittle Egret
Bar-tailed GodwitBar-tailed Godwit
Bar-tailed GodwitBar-tailed Godwit
Striated HeronStriated Heron
Red-capped Plover  Red-capped Plover
Red-necked StintRed-necked Stint
Bar-tailed GodwitBar-tailed Godwit
White-browed CrakeWhite-browed Crake
White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike White-bellied Cuckoo-shri
Varied Triller Varied Triller
Cattle EgretCattle Egret
Cattle EgretCattle Egret
Red-backed Fairy-wren Red-backed Fairy-wren
Red-backed Fairy-wren Red-backed Fairy-wren