Western QLD (part 2) - davidstowe
RTBC ©David Stowe-0791
Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo (female)
Calyptorhynchus banksii
In case you missed it -
part 1 here

Day 4 : nowhere - Diamantina Lakes National Park

We spent the morning searching for photos and glimpses of Striated Grasswren and Rufous-crowned Emu-wren but succeeded only in the glimpses

So it was back in the trusty toyota and on to Lark Quarry.

I'm sure the dinosaur tracks are incredibly interesting when you aren't looking for birds and don't need to be 'nowhere' else but it was $14 we didn't need to spend this day.

So after brief searches for anything interesting (like Grey Falcon) we kept going.
Old Cork Station ©David Stowe-0269
From Lark Quarry we headed west toward Old Cork Station.

Old Cork Homestead (now in ruins) was originally ...

(actually just read the photo below - much easier)
Old Cork Station ©David Stowe-0285
Old Cork Station ©David Stowe-0275
Fatih, Henry, Dave
Old Cork Station ©David Stowe-0280
Gibber Landscape ©David Stowe-0304
back into the vast gibber plains we headed south towards Diamantina NP.
Ground Cuckoo-Shrike ©David Stowe-0307
Ground Cuckoo-shrike
Coracina maxima
A pair of Ground Cuckoo-shrikes demanded our attention although with their wariness coupled with terrible heat haze, getting an acceptable image was impossible.

'Jump-ups' started appearing out of the distant emptiness, at first floating above the haze soaked horizon
Gibber Landscape ©David Stowe-0318
Spinifex Pigeon
Geophaps plumifera
Spinifex Pigeons sat camouflaged on the road in the afternoon sun 
almost becoming ex-pigeons!
Red Kangaroo ©David Stowe-0443
Red Kangaroo
Macropus rufus
I am a person who loves to plan

Ask my wife, but normally i am already planning the trip after the one i haven't been on yet!

One of the things that I loved about this trip was being able to let go of plans

Normally i would prefer to be at camp all set up before dark and not drive into the night

but not this time

this time if something grabbed us we stopped

if a magnificent Red Kangaroo sat long enough on the side of the road we would pull over and capture the moment


nowhere was rubbing off on me
Red Kangaroo ©David Stowe-0405
Red Kangaroo ©David Stowe-0480
Red Kangaroo
Macropus rufus
Diamantina Landscape ©David Stowe-0338
Diamantina_Dave-0513
Me 
(photograph courtesy Henry Cook)
i was even happy having people take photos of me!

Fatih ©David Stowe-0500
Diamantina Landscape ©David Stowe-0358
Diamantina Landscape ©David Stowe-0492
And as the sun set again in its predictable but glorious moment, we savoured the surroundings and continued our venture into the night with the hope of reaching camp sometime before the coming dawn

Our first Inland Dotterels of the trip slowed the process of course although weren't very co-operative. 

Owlet Nightjar ©David Stowe-0559
Australian Owlet-nightjar
Aegotheles cristatus
Even while driving into the campground at Gum Holes we were stopped by an obliging Owlet-nightjar that flew off the track and sat quietly in a tree in front of the car.

The grey nomads camped next to where we stopped were apprehensive of us at first but before long were learning about birds

and asking the usual questions expected of anyone when they see a 500mm lens for the first time

..."how far can you see with that?"...

"To the other side of the mountain" replied Fatih wisely

And finally
to bed.
RTBC ©David Stowe-0780
Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo (female)
Calyptorhynchus banksii
Day 5 : Diamantina Lakes National Park

We had been told by last nights nomads that there were a flock of Red-tailed Black-Cockatoos hanging around Gum Holes and sure enough a morning walk revealed the wonderful sight of a small group feeding in trees nearby.

the wind was making life difficult for them but provided some great photographic opportunities

their call is wonderful to behold and yet another symbol for me of being right in the middle of....

...well, you know.
RTBC ©David Stowe-0843
Western QLD©David Stowe-0907
Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo (male)
Capytorhynchus banksii
Bearded Dragon ©David Stowe-1140
Central Bearded Dragon
Pogona vitticeps
today was actually quite relaxing as we were actually camped at one spot for two consecutive nights. the only such luxury of the entire trip.

Fuel capacity and distance until we could next fill up in Bedourie in a couple of days time meant limited excursions

so we simply wandered around to the other camp ground to check out the larger waterhole

Central Bearded Dragon and some Budgies were welcome additions to the trip
Henry & Fatih ©David Stowe-0365
Diamantina Tree ©David Stowe-0369
Little Corella ©David Stowe-1171
Little Corella
cacatua sanguinea
Austrlian Bustard ©David Stowe-1206
Australian Bustard
Ardeotis australis
Diamantina Stockyards ©David Stowe-0389
a stop in at the ranger station to chat to Chris (the ranger) was timely as he was thinking of offering hot showers in one of the outhouses to visitors

oh well, someone had to be the guinea pig!

mmm....shower.......


the old stockyards and surrounding gibber made for some nice photos to finish the day..
Diamantina Sunset ©David Stowe-0414
Diamantina Sunset ©David Stowe-0415
Diamantina Sunset ©David Stowe-0424
and as the sun set we held aloft our large lenses

... "I think he's compensating for something LOL" ....

for the last time that day
Owlet Nightjar ©David Stowe-0530
..until we saw another bird of course

then we got them out again and kept shooting

even if it was just another Owlet-nightjar.




Stay tuned for Part 3 - the Flock is coming...
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