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More Dreary Weather.

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Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Islands
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More Dreary Weather.

The sky was bleak and grey and once again our plans required a readjustment. We sat around for a while until the boys headed off to the flying field. GD and I decided we may as well have a try at a short ride so wet weather gear at the ready she headed off from Oxley to Everton Station site where I was to meet her.

The weather was a crisp 4c as we started on the trail and we had lost all feeling in our nether regions as we headed downhill . No one had mentioned that Everton was at the edge of a 3km climb albeit gentle for our return journey. The trail itself is easily done on road bikes, a few sandy patches where rain had washed across the path and a few cattle gates to be opened and closed but the snowcapped mountains in the distance served as a perfect distraction as we worked our way up to the highest point on our planned journey at Taylor’s Gap. Despite not having ridden since January the climb was manageable and we passed a few hardy souls pedalling in the opposite direction. Eventually we turned into Gapstead Winery, which is in fact about 2km further on downhill from Gapstead itself. A long climb up the driveway on the comfortable bitumen we parked the purple dynamo and my trusty companion and sought the warmth of the cellar door. This section of the trip took us just under an hour for the 21km, not a fantastic average but an enjoyable ride.

I had a distinct feeling that the cellar door guy was not overly pleased to see us, but after we ordered lunch his attitude changed slightly. The food was ordinary, GD had the Chicken Pie which came with a snowy layer of sea salt, and I tried the warm salad. However the view was spectacular and the temperature a delight as we found parts of our body we had forgotten we owned.

Once more the bikes beckoned and we flew along on the downhill stretch and then climbed steadily back over the Gap. This is definitely the direction to ride if you are not a mountain goat. A plethora of bird life nestled in the trees above us and we were rewarded with a beautiful display of lorikeets of various hues ( for the twitchers, I think they may actually have been Eastern Rosellas). The day began to warm as we worked our way along at a blistering 30kmh, GD was kind enough to keep pace with me until we played sprint to the next bridge games. As per usual I was a big loser…

I hit the wall about 1km from Everton Station and was ever so thankful to see the Outback glistening in the distance. The boys were at the Cheese Factory spending our lunch voucher so that was where we headed to. Another coffee and a big donation to the Chocolate Shop it was back to Chez Guru to recover by the log fire in preparation for our evening sans music at King River Café.

As expected our meal at the King River was near to perfection…my pork belly melted in my mouth, the lemon tart as advertised…best in Aus!

Sydney Australia
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11. Re: More Dreary Weather.

have a look at the photos on this site. scroll down there is an array of shots of crimson rosella, none seriously young, but a few that show the plumage as they slowly move to adult plumage.

...lots of birds do have quite different plumage when they are very young. Immediately out of the nest they are called juveniles, then within a few months they move to first year and beyond that they are just adults and unless you've seen the bird within the first year you can't tell how old it is...

.. though with some species they don't get say, adult male plumage for several years so you can know that they are at least 2 or 3 yrs old. Whistlers are an example of that. If you see a beautiful coloured up golden or rufous whistler, enjoy it he's at least several years old.. now of course this means that you can't just assume a female coloured whistler is actually a female.. it could be a young male...

...

... end of rant...LOL

Sydney Australia
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12. Re: More Dreary Weather.

..hmmm would help if I actually gave you the link..

photogallery.canberrabirds.org.au/parrots.htm

Sydney, Australia
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for Sydney, Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, Airlie Beach, Whitsunday Islands
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13. Re: More Dreary Weather.

Sub adult looks about right...

glad i knew some juvenile fish have quite a different appearance...

solved..Crimson Rosellas they were

Sydney Australia
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14. Re: More Dreary Weather.

it's always satisfying to sort the ID out.. I'm off to tuck up with the field guide and try to figure out what the birds I saw in the rainforest were, I assumed they must be quail but both mum and I forgot our field guides this trip but looking at the piccies it doesn't seem to fit..

..

Melbourne
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15. Re: More Dreary Weather.

Snodge

Are you a bird expert? I have a few apple trees in my suburban backyard and in the last few years (during the drought?) in summer as the apples started to ripen we have had them stripped by flocks of brightly coloured small birds. Doesn't worry me that much as the trees are more decorative than for eating as I don't like spraying the trees to avoid grubs in the apples. I have always though the birds were Rainbow Lorikeets and they looked like the pics in your link from memory. Does that sound right in the outskirts of Melbourne over summer?

Sydney Australia
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16. Re: More Dreary Weather.

Hi AJ, I'm far from an expert, but I do like birds a lot and know quite a bit about a few species. I'm a very lazy birdwatcher and help/ed with a bird banding project near where I live so of course I am most familiar with the sorts of small birds we tended to handle and age and sex ...

Rainbow Lorikeets sounds very likely especially if you think that's what they looked like based on the photos. Rainbows are super abundant. They've done really well adjusting to modern towns and cities and the mass planting of flowering trees along the streets....

...by the way I think the birds I was trying to figure out were stubble quail... though the guide says they are found in grassland habitats... it was a remnant patch of rainforest in an area of pastures and they weren't far in.. so I think that's probably it.... closest in appearance anyway ...it's always hard when you didn't have your field guide (or a better birdwatcher) with you at the time...

17. Re: More Dreary Weather.

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