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Birds of South Australia - #3 - Limestone Coast (27 November 2015)
contributed by cougar15
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Upon leaving Goolwa we headed towards the ferry crossing of the Murray River, at Wellington, and the Limestone Coast. Along the way we stopped at Salt Creek as we spotted an Emu in the distance wandering across a parched reach of the Coorong wetlands.
We planned to stay that night in the township of Robe but had difficulty settling on appropriate accommodation so we continued on to Millicent.
However, prior to leaving Robe we came across numerous birds feeding around the shores of Ling Lake.
There, I noted the presence of Pacific Black and Pink-eared Ducks, Black-winged Stilt, Eurasian Coot, Purple Swamphen, Dusky Moorhen, Great Egret, Australasian Grebe, Lathamís Snipe, Chestnut Teal, Red-kneed Dotterel, Silver Gull, Caspian Tern, Great Egret, White-faced Heron and Black-tailed Native-hen.
There were good numbers of each species present on and around the lake.
The next day we left Millicent and headed for some of the wineries of Coonawarra.
Our first stop was a quick look at Lake McIntyre Reserve, in Millicent itself. This is a very pleasant spot which hosts a variety of indigenous ducks and water fowl. All in good numbers, too.
It is understood the lake is the site of a former council quarry and is still in the process of rehabilitation. It certainly is a wonderfully peaceful wildlife and vegetation reserve. There are a couple of bird-hides and a viewing platform overlooking the lake which is skirted by a well defined 1.3 km walking trail. It is an ideal location for family outings and picnics.
More detail may be obtained from the brochure prepared by the local Management Board using the following internet link Ė
After lunch at Van Leuven Bakery Patisserie, a little gem in Penola which specialises in French pastries and great pies and coffee, we continued on to enjoy the wine tastings at Redman and Bellwether wineries in Coonawarra.
Redman is one of our long standing favourites and Bellwether was recommended by the ladies at Van Leuven. Neither winery disappointed.
If you only have time for one winery, try Bellwether, it is a relatively new operation and chock full of interesting memorabilia, not to mention some very fine wine.
Next, we called in to see what was on offer at Lake Wallace, in Edenhope.
Whilst there were hundreds of waterbirds on the lake, it was suffering from the extended drought. One can only speculate which species were present on the distant body of water as the hard sun-baked perimeter quickly turned into treacherous unstable mud many hundreds of metres from the actual waterline. Thereby preventing closer observation.
Nevertheless, three curious Whistling Kites flew overhead and allowed some close-range photography.
Iím sure this lake would be a wonderful birding site following any breaking of the drought.
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