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, 2 May 2014

Back in the Kayak on Maroochy River

Azure Kingfisher
I took to the kayak yesterday for a 12-kilometre paddle, launching at the end of West Coolum Road in Coolum Creek, and finishing at the Bli Bli boat ramp. Nice to see three kingfishers up close - Azure, Sacred and Collared. I watched the Sacred as it tackled a crab.

Sacred Kingfisher

Collared Kingfisher
Maroochy River
A look up the river to Mt Ninderry, our home base.

Shining  Flycatcher
I encountered Shining Flycatchers on five occasions - a pair and three singles. They are clearly about all year though more difficult to see in the cooler months.

Brahminy Kite
Always a pleasure watching some of the more common river birds.
Little Pied Cormorant
At Bli Bli I found a small colony of Mangrove Honeyeaters. That's of interest because while this species is abundant further north at Tin Can Bay and south in the Pumicestone Passage, it is rare and local along the Noosa and Maroochy rivers for unknown reasons, despite plenty of suitable habitat. A full list of birds along the river can be found here.

Mangrove Honeyeater
Great Egret, Intermediate Egret, White-faced Heron
I popped into the Cooroy sewage treatment works, which are again open to the public after an extensive closure due to rehabilitation works.
Chris Corben and I visited the Parklakes wetlands at Bli Bli. Nothing of interest on the water but a Square-tailed Kite quartering open forest in the Parkland Reserve was nice.

Little Friarbird
Normally Little Friarbird is uncommon on the coastal plains but there is presently a local invasion, with the species outnumbering the resident Noisy in places.
Pacific Baza
A baza in the garden at Ninderry.

Black-necked Stork
A Black-necked Stork flies overhead near Bli Bli.

Welcome Swallow, Fairy Martin, Tree Martin

Welcome Swallow, Fairy Martin and Tree Martin share a line. Note how small the Fairy Martin (centre) is compared to the Tree Martin (right).

Tree Martin

Brown Tree-Snake
 In the home garden, Brown Tree-Snake was an addition to the reptile list. This was a young animal curled up in a dustpan, which I didn't see until it bit me.
Purple Swamphen, Plumed Whistling-Duck
A visit to the North Arm ponds.


  1. Assume you launched at Coolum Creek Greg.and not Coochin. I would like to try that route, but would need someone to drive the car to the destination or have a big paddle back again!

    1. Thanks for pointing that out James. Corrected above. Yes I had somebody drop me off and pick me up 5 hours later.

  2. Wow Greg, you still pack some adventures in when you're home on the Sunshine Coast it seems, with 12km paddles and snakebites thrown into the mix!

    Interesting to hear your thoughts on bird abundance. I too notice the absence of Mangrove Honeyeaters from perfectly suitable habitat, and only seem to find them regularly at Boondall and Shorncliffe in Brisbane. I have noticed a Noisy and Little Friarbird influx in the inner-city suburbs and they are outnumbering the Miners around my home at the moment. The Little Lorikeet population has boomed this year too it seems - they are suddenly as common if not as numerous as the Rainbows, and certainly outdoing the Scaly-breasted Lorikeets.

    1. Thanks Christian. That's interesting about the Little Lorikeets - no rise in their numbers here.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. I do hope the brown tree snake is not like our deadly brown snakes. and you only had to bear the pain of a bite.
    To see three different kingfishers in one day is a joy beyond belief. We only have Kookaburras and those only sporadically.
    Great post with the egrets and heron in the same picture.

  5. What a great series of images.