Monday, March 19, 2012

McKenzie Flora Reserve, Alexandra

Scarlet robins, rufous whistlers and Buff-rumped thornbills (lifer!) were the highlights of an afternoon walk through this small reserve.

Scarlet robins, female and male (Petroica boodang)
McKenzie Flora Reserve, Alexandra, Vic, 18 March 2012
Scarlet robin (female / immature)
I was extremely disappointed withe these images of a White-throated tree-creeper (Cormobates leucophaea). I need to practice with small fast-moving birds in difficult light! But the images do demonstrate the amazing things these birds can do with their toes!

Grey shrike-thrush (Colluricincla harmonica) with a very brightly coloured lunch!
Rufous whistler, female / imm (Pachycephala rufiventris)
The uncooperative male is below left seen not far from this
Spotted pardalote (Pardalotus punctatus)

Crimson rosella (Platycercus elegans) were plentiful
although there were relatively few birds with this full adult plumage.
A little History of the Reserve (lifted from the Southeast Australian Naturalists' Association website):
The reserve is part of the Run of Donald McKenzie, who was an early pioneer squatter in the district. The land was not made a reserve until the 1970s. Prior to this it was grazed by cattle. Since then a variety of eucalypts have regenerated, including most of the boxes and peppermints. The understorey now has a wide variety of wildflowers and native grasses. There are also some weeds and invasive grasses. The area was burnt in the 1969 fires which stimulated growth.
I am amazed how grazed paddocks can become bush in 40 years.

A few typical scenes. McKenzie Flora Reserve

Common brown butterfly (Heteronympha merope merope)
The place was alive with these butterflies (there must have been thousands)
This butterfly was actually back at the caravan park at Acheron.
I believe it is an Orchard Swallowtail (or Large Citrus) butterfly.
(Papilio aegeus aegeus)
Butterfly identification made possible via the Museum Victoria Butterfly web page!


  1. a delightful, varied post, looks like your stay in this area was very fruitful! I love the robins; don't have them nearby at all that I know. Great isn't it to have easy access to id with the museum/butterfly link; well done.

  2. Well done with the Thornbill Pete. Nice shots of the Robin. I have trouble focussing with black and red birds for some reason. And finally, a photo of the true cameraman in the family with His new lens! Nice link to the Museum too, may have to look into that for some of the reptiles up here.

  3. Some great birds and also love those butterflies. Boy, would I like to go for a walk along that track.