On Saturday the 18th of April 26 bird enthusiasts from Edenhope, Apsley, Naracoorte, Millicent, Penola and Mt. Gambier participated in a Kowree Farm Tree Group and Landcare Woodland Bird Workshop run by Jonathan Starks of Dimboola. The workshop was run in the Meereek Flora Reserve about 15km south west of Edenhope.
With the weather on our side, we began with a guided walk through six different ecological vegetation types – Heathy Herb-rich Woodlands, Damp Sands Herb-rich Woodlands, Seasonally Inundated Woodland, Plains Sedgy Woodland, Plains Woodland and a Sedge Wetland. This part of the Meereek State Forest was turned into a flora reserve 32 years ago in 1983, for its rare and critically endangered ecological vegetation communities. It is vital that places like these be managed effectively to preserve the biodiversity that they hold.
A keen eye was needed to spot some of the bird species seen on the day, especially for the Weebill which is one of Australia's smallest birds. A total of 40 species of birds were seen during the workshop including: Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Variegated Fairy-wren, Yellow-rumped Thornbill, Spotted Pardalote, Scarlet Robin, Red-capped Robin, Whistling Kite, Red-browed Finch, White-browed Babbler, Musk Lorikeet, Golden Whistler and Grey Fantail. The Red-capped Robin was amongst one of the highlights of the day and can be seen in the photo below by Bob Green of Birdlife South East SA.
After the walk we enjoyed a lovely morning tea provided by King’s Katering and a talk from Jonathan Starks about woodlands, how they influence bird species distribution and bird ecology