Latham's Snipe: There's One Now!
Latham's Snipe, Gallinago hardwickii
These amazing birds fly Japan to Australia for our summer. A trip of around 8500km. They do it mostly in one lift, taking around 3 days to arrive in Northern Queensland, where they bulk up again, and then disperse along the east coast.
It's at least another 3500km to the Glen Orden Wetlands one of so many places where they summer over.
To put in in perspective, that is about an 8 hour commercial flight service.
This wetlands offers them a moderately safe home. The water retarding basin is fenced around so apart from the occasional dog, or curious photographer they are mostly undisturbed.
The area is about 500m from the local shopping mall complex and surrounded by housing estates and schools. Sporting and play equipment abound along the footpath that encircles the wetlands.
This bird exploded out of the grass and was at top speed as it went past me, so I was a bit late getting it in the viewfinder.
However with all activity going on the background I thought it might be interesting to see how they live.
I've counted 24 on one day, but doubtless the number is probably double that as parts of the area are water-bound to some extent.