Chiltern birds - very quiet

Just advising that the box-ironbark woodlands around Chiltern in north east Victoria are currently very quiet bird-wise (it's also very hot and dry up that way at the moment).

Local naturalist Eileen Collins advises that she failed to see or hear any Turquoise Parrots in a walk in the park this morning. While in the area over last Christmas we noted a complete lack of understorey in many parts of the park around Chiltern and also some tree crown die back in other areas. There are very few honeyeaters about and what is about takes some finding.

I can recommend visitors spend some time staking out the dam sites (eg. Lappins Dam on Lappins Track) in the park, especially towards the end of the day after the main heat is subsiding. This can be quite productive, with birds drinking as well as mammals and reptiles coming down to drink or bathe. The other birding technique of course is to get out very early, when birds are calling during the dawn chorus ...

Hopefully there will be some good rains for north east Victoria in the coming weeks but so far it is not looking promising.

cheers

Martin O'Brien

Department of Sustainability and Environment

2/8 Nicholson St. (PO Box 500)

East Melbourne 3002

VICTORIA