Tag Archives: Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve

Fan-tailed Cuckoo calling

Through spring and summer I regularly hear Fan-tailed Cuckoos calling: described as a mournful descending trill. Along one of the paths to the Moorooduc quarry a pair flew down to lower branches and started calling.

In the background you can also hear a Striated Pardalote, a Grey Fantail and a Grey Shrikethrush.

I dont often get a chance to photograph these shy birds as they move through the upper and mid tree canopy looking for hairy caterpillars and other insects.

Fan-tailed cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry

Fan-tailed cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry, Victoria

Fan-tailed cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry

II

Fan-tailed cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry

III

A Mistletoebird intrudes

Walking along one of the tracks around the Moorooduc Quarry I heard the distinctive call of the Mistletoebird along with the alarm call of a Superb-fairy wren. Usually the fairy-wrens stay low, nearer the ground, but a female wren was calling quite loudly as a Mistletoebird helped itself to the fruit of a Cherry Ballart tree. The Mistletoebird as its name suggests has a strong relationship with various native mistletoes (Box, Drooping and Creeping) and helps spread the seed onto other trees via a very fast and sticky digestive process. I hadn’t seen one feeding in a Cherry Ballart before. The ballart is another form of parasitic plant that uses the roots of other trees to gain its nutrients rather than the branches.

Mistletoebird, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Mistletoebird, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Mistletoebird, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

II

Mistletoebird and Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Mistletoebird has a snack while a Superb Fairy-wren frowns at the intrusion.

Small birds of Moorooduc

I often stop by Moorooduc Quarry to observe the Peregrine Falcons on the cliffs of the quarry. Afterwards I walk the nearby tracks and photograph the smaller forest birds.

Eastern Yellow Robin, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Eastern Yellow Robin, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Female Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Superb Fairy-wren, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

II

A Spring visitor at the Quarry

For the last few years in early spring, Moorooduc Quarry has hosted several Brush Bronzewing feeding along the grass and gravel paths. I will regularly see and hear the Common Bronzewing but the Brush is rarer and more often found further north into Central Victoria. They seem to be migrating and stopping off at Moorooduc Quarry for a few weeks for a feed and a rest. I don’t see them at other times of the year locally and I am not sure where they are headed. They may be just stopping by for a particular food source. ┬áIt is something I will have to research. I found this young male Bronzewing feeding on the path. He only flew up to a nearby perch and watched as I fiddled with my camera settings. Usually the bronzewings will take off at a decent rate and fly well into the forest before stopping. I was lucky to get a bit of good light to pick up his reflecting iridescent feathers.

Brush Bronzewing, Moorooduc Quarry, Moorooduc, Vic

Brush Bronzewing, Moorooduc Quarry, Mt Eliza, Vic

Brush Bronzewing, Moorooduc Quarry, Moorooduc, Vic

II

White-eared Honeyeater

While photographing the Tawny Frogmouth at Moorooduc Quarry, a White-eared Honeyeater flew in to see what I was up to. The honeyeaters dont sit still for very long so I clucked and clicked my tongue a bit while I adjusted and focussed my camera. It seemed to work for a few moments.

White-eared Honeyeater, Moorooduc Quarry, Moorooduc, Vic

White-eared Honeyeater, Moorooduc Quarry, Moorooduc, Vic

White-eared Honeyeater, Moorooduc Quarry, Moorooduc, Vic

II

Soaking up the morning sun…

On a walk up the track to the top of the Moorooduc Quarry I found a dozing Tawny Forgmouth on a low branch. He was quite relaxed until a group of walkers joined me and he stretched into his branch like pose and then eased back once they moved on.

Tawny Frogmouth, Moorooduc Quarry, Mount Eliza, Vic

II

III

IV

Soon to find true form

I often drop into the Quarry Reserve in Moorooduc to check in on the Peregrine Falcons that make the flooded quarry their home. In the surrounding bushland are many bird species working hard through their breeding cycles. I watched a pair of Brown Thornbills searching for insects amongst the scrub and was surprised to see a Cuckoo seemingly working the branches with them. It even hopped to the ground and rummaged amongst the leaves. Occasionally it would stop and make the typical Shining Bronze Cuckoo calls. I am sure that the Thornbills had raised this cuckoo.

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

II

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

III

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

IV

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

V

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

VI

Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Moorooduc Quarry Flora and Fauna Reserve, Vic

VII