Iron Range ~ Part One

I began writing this on Wednesday morning, 7 October sitting in the shared kitchen area of our originally booked accommodation in Lockhart River. It was not much. The people who own it could not be nicer, but there is no way around the fact that it’s just not “quite” as they say. It is in the middle of a construction period, and once the new units are complete, it will be nice, but for now, we chose to move to other accommodations at the Iron Range Cabins and that is from where I am now writing.

We flew from Cairns to Lockhart River Tuesday arvo in a twin-engine prop plane. It landed in another small town and then in about half an hour we were here. Our friend, Robert met us at the airport, he had driven up in his 4WD. We have birded with him in this vehicle in Bowra as well as at the Kingfisher Lodge area, so cramped though it is, Lynn and I are used to sharing the other side of the front seat.
SkyTrans... its a small airline.
Although it was getting late in the afternoon, of course we went birding. We had a female Red-cheeked Parrot perch up for us over the road, giving us a look with her beautiful white eyes.

Ms Red-cheeked Parrot
Then we stopped at the Cooks Hut Campsite where we heard, but could not locate the Yellow-billed Kingfisher. It was getting on toward dark and it had been a long day so we headed back to our room. I was getting stuff out of my bag, when I heard the call. A small flock of Palm Cockatoos just passed over. I stood on the veranda and along came a straggler. It is not quite the look I had longed for of this wondrous, amazing bird, but it was an identifiable view and it made Palm Cockatoo the 500th bird on my Australian List. I am grateful.
Palm Cockatoo. Not exactly the photo I imagined taking, but it is that magnificent bird.
Wednesday began with pouring rain. It is the rainforest after all. Before we left, we had a White-faced Robin by our room. We headed into Lockhart River to check for the Palm Cockatoos. They were known to “breakfast” in the trees near the church, but we have checked there every morning to no avail. However we did see a Fawn-breasted Bowerbird perching nicely on a fence. I am grateful.

I got some lovely photos, but all of my morning photos (well over 300 total) were “lost” in a techno-glitch. I have stated repeatedly, that I will learn not to put emphasis on the bird photo, and perhaps this was a lesson in that. I lost photos of three life birds, the other two were Great Frigatebird and Lesser Sand Plover. 

Fawn-breasted Bowerbird with a stick.
One last note regarding photography… if it is possible, I grab a recording shot of birds that I see. If the opportunity presents, I will take as good a photo as I can, but I am not going to force it. I will appreciate the bird first and photograph it second. And I will not worry if I do not get a photo at all. I am a birder, not a photographer. Ok. That's that.

This seems a good spot to stop the first part of this multi-part blog, so I will. I am in Lockhart River waiting to make our flight back to Cairns later this afternoon and have a bit of time, but the internet is quite slow so I will keep this short. I am very, very grateful. Stay tuned, there is much more to come...

Birds. Peace. Love. Earth. Laughter. Music.