Starting on the east side of Anglesea River our small party of seven headed north from Wilkens Street towards Coalmine Road. This is my favourite bird spot in Anglesea.

The weather was overcast but calm for most of the walk. We were in luck as we encountered many swamp gums flowering which attracted numerous White-naped, White-eared, New Holland and Yellow-faced Honeyeaters, as well as Red Wattle Birds and Eastern Spinebills.

We also had a very co-operative White-throated Treecreeper feeding close to us at eye height on a large tree trunk. There were many Eastern Yellow Robins perched along the track side as we approached Coalmine Road. Missing this time were the Dusky Woodswallows which normally perch on the power lines and regularly nest in this area and a flock of Red-browed Firetails that feed on the mowed grassy area next to the road.

Along the side of Coalmine Rd we inspected the area where the Grey Goshawk has previously nested in a large spotted gum but no activity was recorded. We did get a good view of a Grey Shrike-thrush and more Yellow Robins as we proceeded west along the road.

We were fortunate to see a Buff-banded Rail on the western edge of the river just south of the bridge. You are more likely to see rails and crakes when the day is overcast and this was the case today!

buff banded railBuff-banded Rail

The northern wetland was dry and the dotterels had vacated the area leaving only a pair of plovers and a few wrens and swamp hens poking about. However, as there were numerous small fish in the river we were lucky to see a Little Black Cormorant perched in a dead tree, a Pied Cormorant and Australasian Grebe fishing, and an adult Nankeen (Rufous) Night Heron camped in a Pinus radiata tree at the Catholic Church as we proceeded back to our start point.

nankeen night heronNankeen (Rufous) Night Heron


A small group of Great Cormorants can often be seen perching further south (just east of the car park) in the wetland.

It was a satisfying day with over 30 species seen and almost continual sightings as we walked the loop. We also spotted a Ring-tailed Possum in a drey located in a Boobialla and a Black Wallaby crossing our path in the Coogoorah wetland.

Peter Forster

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