After a pleasant five-day stay in Perth (see last post) we travelled south-east through the Darling Range – seeing our first Grey Currawongs for the trip – to Dryandra Woodland, a wonderful swathe of wandoo woodland famed for its wildflowers, birds and mammals - especially the iconic Numbat.
Dryandra is the largest tract of native vegetation remaining in the the WA western wheatbelt. We settled in for a 3-night stay at the pleasant Congelin Camping Ground: a beautiful, peaceful place - such a contrast with the bustle and hustle of Perth. Soon, some smart Scarlet Robins were strutting their stuff. Our last night here was the first on the trip where we had a whole camping ground to ourselves.
We did a 22-km drive on our first afternoon along various
tracks, travelling 8-15km/ph. I
had seen Numbat here in the early 1990s but we wanted another - and a view better
than my last, and of course we looked for birds and other goodies. I's a
bit like going on safari in Africa, but numbats - not cheetahs or leopards - are the target.
|Rufous Treecreeper, apparently with something edible|
|Western (White-naped) Honeyeater|
On our second day at Dryandra, we visited the Dryandra Village and did 58km of driving various tracks; no numbats still but good birds included a pair of Painted Button-quail on the Ochre Trail, Western Thornbill, Red-capped Parrot and better views of Blue-breasted Fairy-wren than we had earlier near Cervantes (see here).
Other birds included Brown-headed Honeyeater, Bush
Stone-Curlew, Southern Boobook, Grey Currawong, Red-capped Robin, Jacky Winter,
Restless Flycatcher, Yellow-rumped Thornbill, Inland Thornbill, Shining
Bronze-Cuckoo, Horsfield’s Bronze-Cuckoo, Dusky Woodswallow, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Grey Shrike-thrush,
Carnaby’s Cockatoo, White-browed Babbler, White-browed Scrub-wren and Weebill.
|Blue-breasted Fairy-wren: male coming into breeding plumage|
On our second full day in Dryandra, we spent the morning doing a 9-km hike along some of the reserve’s southern tracks. A Regent Parrot flew over the camp early in the morning before we headed off. We added Varied (Black-capped) Sittella and Western Yellow Robin. We had great but brief views again of Red-capped Parrot, a conspicuously shy bird here.
In the afternoon of our second day I added Western Rosella
after driving another 40km along Dryandra's roads, some of which were becoming quite familiar.
|Western Yellow Robin|
|Western Grey Kangaroo|
|Canola fields adjoining Dryandra|