Ospreys at Caloundra, Queensland

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)

I recently took a coastal walk along Kings Beach at Caloundra, Queensland, searching for a pair of ospreys which I had been told were resident in the area.  After a couple of hours searching, they presented themselves and I was able to get some nice pics of these majestic birds passing overhead.

Their diet is mainly fish, and it’s a photography goal of mine to get a picture of an osprey catching a fish from the water.  I didn’t get that particular shot this time, but I noticed that one of them had in fact caught a fish and was flying with it, still in its talons.

Osprey with fish

As it happened, the osprey wasn’t the only fish-catching bird I encountered on this walk.  I also saw this cormorant, who had successfully caught a fish for lunch.  I’ve not been able to identify the type of fish it’s holding, so I welcome any suggestions in the comments.

Little Black Cormorant

After the osprey-spotting outing, I managed one final shot of a beautiful blue faced honey-eater.

Blue Faced Honey-eater

I’m very pleased to see that the coastal ecology here remains healthy enough to sustain such wonderful birdlife.

Bunya Mountains National Park

View from the Burtons Well lookout, facing west towards Chinchilla

Approximately 200km northwest of Brisbane is the beautiful Bunya Mountains National Park.  This park has spectacular views from an elevation of 1,100 metres.  The Bunya Mountains were and are culturally significant to Indigenous Australians, who gathered to feast on the bountiful nuts of the bunya pine.  1902 was the final known gathering. The traditional owners have continued cultural and spiritual connections to the Bunya Mountains to this day.  We visited the park in November 2020.

The park has a glorious abundance of bird species.  We were visited by currawongs, parrots, bower birds, kookaburras, honey-eaters, wrens and galahs – all without leaving our holiday cabin.

Currawong
Male King Parrot
Female King Parrot
Galahs
Satin Bower Bird (male)
White Cheeked Honey-eater
Superb Blue Fairy Wren
Kookaburra

As well seeing as the satin bower bird, I was especially delighted to see the striking yellow and black regent bower bird.  This was the first time I’d seen, let alone photograph, one of these beautiful birds.

Regent Bower Bird

The lawns around the holiday houses and cabins make perfect grazing sites for hundreds of wallabies and paddymelons which, while slightly shy, are accustomed to the presence of people.  There were many young joeys, some still in the pouch, so I assumed we’d arrived at the end of the breeding season.

There are many fine walking trails throughout the park, with sweeping views east and west, and a chance to see some of the other wildlife found in the region.

Cherry Plain Lookout
View to the west, and prickly pear
Lace Monitor (goanna)
Scarlet Honey-eater
Red Browed Finch
Golden Whistler
Eastern Yellow Robin

There’s a lot to explore in this wonderful national park.  I’m keen to visit again soon.