Thursday, 12 July 2018

White-browed Scrubwren portraits

White-browed Scrubwrens can be found in a wide variety of habitats however the habitats all have one aspect in common, dense ground cover. They are a sedentary species so I guess it is not surprising there are currently ten races or sub-species recognised across a large geographical area – this sub speciation, or small variations, occurring over time in geographically isolated populations that do not move much.

Scrubwrens are alert birds and their inquisitive nature will sometimes cause one to emerge from dense cover to see who the intruder is, giving brief opportunities for photos. They often scold you with a hard buzzing call.

I came across one in the Arakwal National Park on the coast just south of Cape Byron(1). The bird was foraging in the tangled branches of a dead shrub. Given the location this is Sericornis frontalis sub species tweedi.

Please click on photos to enlarge.

NOTE (1)
Today it would surprise many visitors to Arakwal NP that much of Byron Bay including the park was sand-mined between 1935 and 1968 to recover four “heavy minerals” Rutile (TiO2), Zircon (Zr,SiO4), Ilmenite (Fe,TiO3) and Monazite (Ce,La,Th,PO4) plus minor metals gold, platinum and tin.

When I was first visited Byron Bay in 1975 the park area was still being rehabilitated from a sandy wasteland devoid of any plants. Just 50 years since mining ceased the area is now a plant diverse coastal habitat rich in birds. The warm and wet climate where plants thrive has no doubt helped the rehabilitation enormously to the point now where visitors would find it hard to believe the area was ever mined.  

No comments:

Post a Comment