Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bird Week Day 4 - Oh my, Woolamai! Birds of Phillip Island

White-fronted chat, Cape Woolamai
A few pictures today from another rewarding early morning walk to Cape Woolamai. When the weather is right it is a place worth getting up early for! It appears that there is always something to different of the feathered kind to see and the views are exceptional!

Good-sized meal for a Chat methinks!
Australasian pipit perched on some Cape Woolamai pink granite
Australian magpie chases down a Brown falcon to provide some feedback

These shots were taken within two seconds. When checking my pictures later the magpie appears to end up with something in it's bill that is not there in the first two shots. I am assuming that the falcon is now short a couple of feathers!

A contemplative Australian magpie. I remembered later that Collingwood had just been knocked out of the AFL finals. 
We surprised each other. One shot and this White-faced heron was off!
On the day of my walk in late September 2013 I took a few snippets of video:

The trail starts from the Woolamai surf beach car park and follows the beach until the cliffs commence. Hooded plover are commonly seen along this stretch (but that's another story). Steps take you to the top of the cliffs and shortly thereafter the trail splits into a circuit. Of late I have tended to take the "western" arm as this follows the ocean enabling me to keep an eye out for distant albatross. Sometimes I return this way as well. The views are spectacular. Taking the other arm will certainly add to your Woolamai day list as it passes through heathland (Superb fairy-wren, cisticola) and a good stand of banksia which is full of honeyeaters (wattlebirds and New Holland Honeyeater dominate).

Throughout the cape there is the opportunity to see raptors (Swamp harrier, Peregrine falcon, Nankeen kestrel, Black-shouldered kite and White-bellied sea eagle).

If the weather is unpleasant (either too warm or too wet and windy) do not take a young family - this is an 8km round trip!

Before your walk you may like to read the Phillip Island Nature Park's Nature Notes for Cape Woolamai.

The kids trudging, January 2011

Early morning view from the beach
I had forewarning of this burn but was relieved to find no evidence of it!
Up on the high ground
Much higher up now looking back towards the beach that was the starting point. Much rain has created fresh water pools on top of the headland.
The destination!
Bird on!


  1. I love the chat Pete and also the second last photo looking down over the grassy tufts towards the beach

  2. Great pictures - I like the old name of the Chat - "Wimple Bird" named after the headwear that nuns used to wear.

    Stewart M - Melbourne

  3. When I visited Australia one of the birds I eagerly looked for was White-fronted Chat and I didn't find it until two days before I left for home. Your pictures bring back great memories.