Sunday, November 17, 2013

Silverleaves Snipe and Spoonbill Style

Now that we have that necessary bit of alliteration out of the way here's a little update from Silverleaves, Phillip Island.

It's Spring - and it's wet.

The low-lying land is a wetland once again, now deep enough to get Royal spoonbills interested. I counted four there recently and I took the chance to photograph them even though yet another Bass Strait squall was pushing through.

All birds demonstrated bleeding plumage. I read that the males and females look similar
I was pretty happy with some of the angles this bird gave me, showing off its aigrette plumes.
"Oh my! Would you look over there at Reg. What is he thinking? He's been seeing that new stylist"
Rachel couldn't bear to look at him
Quelle horreur!
Here is a Royal spoonbill having an itch in a stiff breeze! 
In other breaking news… The Latham's snipe have returned to Honeysuckle Grove.

I have been driving past this marshy paddock for 26 years. It was not until the 27 November 2011 that the car was brought to a sudden halt one evening (might be dramatising a little, it is a 40kmh road shared with pedestrians) ...

Latham's snipe - such gorgeous markings!

As with the November 2011 experience these photos were taken from the car. On this occasion there must have been at least 20 birds.
Bird on!


  1. Hi Pete Love the Spoonbill shots and commentary to go along with it. The shots of the Snipe are great. I rejoice when I see 1 but I would be thrilled if I saw 20!

  2. I too enjoyed the Spoonbill commentary. It's always great to see Snipe. They have such wonderful plumage patterning.

  3. Good on you for braving the weather and getting those great images of the spoonbills (love the hairdos!) and snipe.

  4. 20! Did you tie some down for a fortnight's time? I do know some who would have to screech tyres to stop on that road! Great shots Pete, the Spoonbill plumes and commentary are complementary to one another - both grab your attention. Great post.

  5. All great photos but the breeding plumage on the Spoonbills is especially great. I like the Snipe as well - I'd have to go to some very different habitat to see them.
    No! Not me in the kayak - anyway its a "sit inside" kayak and my knees have got too stiff for one of them to be comfortable!

  6. Great set of pictures - I need to spend more time on the island.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  7. Great stuff! I enjoyed both these species when I visited Australia.

  8. Looks like a good year for snipe. saw 4 yesterday at Begola Wetlands in Ocean Grove :-)