Skip to content

Fowl-watching from the bitumen – 10,000 Birds


    Because of the latest flooding rains we’re nonetheless restricted as to the place we are able to go bird-watching. Typically the rainfall is remoted and the storms arrive at any time of day or night time and it’s important to try to plan any journey accordingly. Earlier than we go anyplace we examine the Foremost Roads Journey Map, however we all know we are able to’t go north for a very long time but. The freeway has been destroyed isolating each Derby and Fitzroy Crossing. The bridge over the Fitzroy River at Fitzroy Crossing has been destroyed and it may’t be repaired for a really very long time, so for now we’re bird-watching near dwelling.

    Even just a few kilometres from dwelling the freeway out of city goes underwater when it actually rains and the header photograph exhibits why you want a four-wheel drive right here! We drive slowly throughout Roebuck Plains on every journey we make to go bird-watching right now of yr. There are normally 4 lengthy sections of water throughout the freeway and as soon as it will get too deep the freeway will get closed. The bitumen must be repaired most years after these large flooding occasions and by driving slowly it helps to cease the bitumen from falling aside fairly as quick. You can also’t see the massive holes within the bitumen underneath the water in the event you drive too quick and also you may miss among the many birds that now name this space dwelling.

    Sloppy edges in the event you depart the bitumen

    Bitumen affected by moist climate

    It’s about 45 kilometres from city to the Roebuck Plains space and the crossing is roughly 12 kilometres lengthy. We normally enable a few hours to drive slowly throughout the 12 kilometre size and again to verify we see as a lot bird-life as potential. From at some point to the subsequent it may actually fluctuate and even the time of day. You’ll be able to arrive in sunshine and earlier than you understand it you’re underneath the blackest clouds. Invariably we get a free automobile wash with rain water from above and under on these journeys. We additionally get to get pleasure from some spectacular cloud formations. Right now of yr it’s all about each climate and bird-watching. The freeway has a rumble strip each by the center and down either side and white posts that will help you information you alongside the size of it. Everyone seems to be courteous and permits autos by one after the other.

    Driving alongside the freeway surrounded by storms

    We’re beginning to observe just a few extra dragonflies than regular now and lots of of them are doubled-up! Trying again by my pictures I quickly discovered one had managed to photo-bomb on the precise hand aspect.

    Dragonfly and water depth gauge on the sting of the freeway

    We now have been happy to see the return of a Pied Heron just lately, which is an effective indication that we’re in for a bit extra rain! There are additionally massive numbers of Shiny Ibis which have just lately arrived to breed. Magpie Geese are additionally right here within the a whole lot and that’s solely what we are able to see from the bitumen! We concern that some could have tried to nest on areas that then bought inundated when extra rain fell, however they may little question try and breed once more. When storms come by the Magpie Geese can usually be seen taking to the skies.

    Magpie Geese in flight

    Whiskered Terns have additionally moved to the realm to feed and little question breed. Different birds simply drop by for some time and transfer on once more just like the Australian Pelican.

    Whiskered Terns

    Australian Pelican beside the freeway

    Australasian Swamphens are additionally now calling the realm dwelling and are sometimes noticed simply wandering alongside the sting of the freeway. A car makes for a superb air-conditioned bird-hide! Masked Lapwings and Black-winged Stilts are profiting from the freeway sections that supply an space of dry land when in all places else is flooded.

    Australasian Swamphen on the sting of the freeway

    Masked Lapwings on the sting of the freeway

    Black-winged Stilt on the sting of the freeway

    Each little little bit of shade is taken up with an Australasian Pipit in the meanwhile and there are additionally Black-fronted Dotterels alongside the sting of the flood water.

    Black-fronted Dotterel on the sting of the freeway

    We all know it’s a very long time till our moist season is over and we all know that each alternative we get to exit in our air-conditioned bird-hide will likely be rewarding. January alone put over 1 metre of rainfall in lots of rain gauges across the Kimberley, so until you’re flying you aren’t going too removed from dwelling proper now.

    There are worse locations to be restricted to bird-watching from the bitumen for certain!