Karkarook Park is an old sand quarry site in Heatherton that has been rehabilitated into wetlands, a large multipurpose lake and bushland. It is a good site for Birding (50+ species in a few hours) and photography. It is used by locals for exercise, fishing, dog walking and picnics. The wetlands are excellent for spotting the rarer waders like crakes and rails and often migrating birds will stop for a few days rest – Stilts, Dotterals and the very rare Little Bittern.
On my last visit I watched as some newly hatched Dusky Moorhen and Coot chicks took to the water and were fed by their parents. I was quite surprised by the size of their feet.
I was walking down one of the woodlands paths when I was buzzed by a Willie Wagtail that was clearly agitated. They can be quite aggressive with other birds and are a very good bush alarm giving a clear distinctive warning (chicka chicka) when something dangerous is nearby: snakes, foxes, large lizards etc. But they don’t usually worry too much about people. I stood still and had a look around and realized that just near my knees in a bit of scrub were 2 Wagtail chicks that must have just come out of the nest. They did not fly away and just watched the parent. I moved back a few metres and sat down next to a tree. The parent then ignored me and started to feed his chicks. The other parent was on the other side of the bush looking after a third chick.
The Red Browed Finch caught my attention when it flew up to the top of a fence line and started to bop up and down with a delicate grass seed stem. He put on quite a show for a few minutes but when the female ignored him he dropped the seeds and flew off….