Sunshine Coast Birds

Birding and other wildlife experiences from the Sunshine Coast and elsewhere in Australia - and from overseas - with scribblings about travel, environmental issues, kayaking, hiking and camping.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Cordalba: Spotted Quail-thrush, Black-chinned & Yellow-tufted Honeyeaters

Spotted Quail-Thrush - male
A nice pair of Spotted Quail-thrush was the highlight of a visit to Cordalba, near Childers in south-east Queensland. I camped in the forest overnight and found the quail-thrush the next morning in the recently declared Cordalba National Park as they flew across the road. The male paused briefly for a photograph. This species is in decline in parts of its range: the South Australian subspecies is believed to be extinct and the bird has disappeared from several sites south of Cordalba on the Sunshine Coast.

Black-chinned Honeyeater
Not far outside the national park, in the adjoining Cordalba State Forest, I found a group of four Black-chinned Honeyeaters, another species that is rare in south-east Queensland. I was alerted to their presence by the characteristically loud, ringing calls.

Black-chinned Honeyeater

Yellow-tufted Honeyeater
A group of Yellow-tufted Honeyeaters was encountered in the national park. This species has a strange distribution in south-east Queensland. It is common on the western slopes of the Great Divide but generally absent from the coastal lowlands. However, the honeyeater occurs in small, disjunct colonies in places in the hinterland (such as near Jimna) and to the north (at Cordalba and around Childers, for instance).

Common Bronzewing
Other birds at Cordalba included Common Bronzewing, Fuscous Honeyeater, White-bellied Cuckoo-shrike, Grey-crowned Babbler, Fairy Gerygone, Dusky Woodswallow, Australian Owlet-Nightjar, loads of Scarlet Honeyeaters and Jacky Winter - full list here. Swamp and Red-necked Wallabies were seen.

Swamp Wallaby
Widening road - Cordalba

I noticed quite a bit of woodland destruction in the state forest. The road was being widened for reasons which are not clear as traffic is minimal. Presumably it is to facilitate more extensive logging. I saw quite a bit of evidence of recent logging of ironbark and spotted gum along some tracks. Logging had been stopped in these state forests by the former Labor Government but has been reintroduced by the Liberal National Party Government. See here for more about what Premier Campbell Newman is doing to destroy Queensland's natural environment.

Recent logging - Cordalba

Scarlet Honeyeater - female

Zebra Finch
I found a fair number of (40+) Zebra Finches just south of Childers. This is a western species which is scarce in south-east Queensland, occurring sporadically in northern and western parts of the region.

Bush Stone-Curlew
I visited the Bundaberg home of friends Trevor and Annie Quested, where birds included Bush Stone-Curlew and Leaden Flycatcher.

Leaden Flycatcher


  1. Great Birds. I would not expect so many western species so near to the coast. Love the quail-thrush pics, they are always so hard to photograph!! :)

    1. Thanks Benjamin. Yes quail-thrush can be difficult.

  2. Great photos of some unusual species. I spent a day in the bush yesterday trying fruitlessly to photograph small bush birds, so I have a newfound admiration of your efforts!

  3. Yes - great photos. Can't wait to revisit Queensland for some birding later this year (from UK), but the extent of the resumed deforestation throughout the state is really worrying.