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West Coast Bird Watching

Author: Carl from Pahrump (More Trip Reviews by Carl from Pahrump)
Date of Trip: April 2007

Learning about the School of the Air at the Giralia Station.

Seeing a 1000 lbs Potato Cod under our tender boat at Coral Bay.

Driving along the edge of the West Coast from Horrocks Beach to the Pinnacles Desert NP near Cervantes to the Kalbarri NP.

Snorkeling with Whale Sharks and Giant Manta Rays on the Ningaloo Reef near Coral Bay.

The Boy's Chapel at the New Marcia Monastery.

If we were planning the trip again, I would:

Stop in Monkey Mia to see the Dolphines instead of snorkeling with the Whale Sharks at Coral Bay.

Go inland to see Karijini National Park near the remote town of Tom Price (stay at the Tom Price Tourist Park www.smh.com.au/news/Western-Australia/Tom-Price/2005/02/17/1108500208703.html?oneclick=true)

Come during the August-September wildflower season.

Birding Summary

Of the 100 bird species we saw along the West Coast of Western Australia, 38 were endemic to Australia. Most of the 62 non-Australian Endemic bird species were new for us.

9 bird species were never seen again during the 255-day trip around Australia; that is: Kimberely Magpie, Roseate Tern, Common Noddy, Singing Honeyeater, Little Corella, Wedge-tailed Shearwater, Oriental Pratincole, White-plumed Honeyeater, & Ostrich.

Special Comments:

On March 31 we started the trek North up the West Coast of Australia. We stopped at the Leschenaunlt Peninsula Conservation Park (33.200S 115.694E) near Bunbury to look at water birds in the vast wetland. Traffic increased as we approached Perth. We managed to find our way onto the expressway that goes thru Perth, and onto the road that goes to our B&B.

We stopped for a picnic lunch at Yanchep NP (31.545S 115.682E). Several Pacific Black Ducks and Purple Swamp Hens decided to join us. In the background were thousands of Short-billed Black-cockatoos - the sky was full of them at times -- then every treetop was packed. They are pretty noisy, especially in mass.

We got to the Neergabby Organic Farm B&B at 4pm and met our hosts Robin and Ian. Later we went for a walk by the Gingin Brook.

For dinner Robin fixed Tasmanian Salmon steaks with sweet potatoe slices baked so slowly that they formed a caramelized topping, and a salad of Rocket, Cherry Tomatoes and Feta cheese with Balsamic Vinegar infused with Figs. For dessert we had stewed Plums with Panna Cotta, which is Italian for cooked cream -- slowly cook double cream (it must never boil) with vanilla beans for 20 minutes, then add gelatin, then chill slowly till it is solid. After dinner Ian told us how their rammed Limestone house was built. The walls are 300mm (13 inches) thick. It is basically like a poured basement wall, but it is done with a dry limestone/sand/cement mixture and metal forms. The house is cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

On April 1 for Jam Tasting we had Plum Jam and Tahitian Lime Marmalade on freshly made whole grain bread. We also had fresh fruit with Greek Yogurt sweetened with local Bush Honey.

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