Leaving Yungaburra and heading south

Featured Image : Nankeen Night Heron Staring us down at Hasties Swamp.

 

 

Victoria's Riflebirds

Victoria’s Riflebird Display at Wongabel State Forest

 

 

Greetings from Ingham 🤩
We almost didn’t leave Yungaburra yesterday morning 😬😬
After packing up we started lifting the van to get it hitched onto the truck.  It didn’t go up very far……
The new 12 volt motor we had just installed was making the same weird clicking noises as the old one, so were just a little bit concerned..
And then a very loud bang!! The van fell a bit on the right side as obviously something drastic happened with that landing leg.
Luckily the left leg held so we quickly got the truck jack and blocks of timber to support the right side.
We really thought we were well and truly grounded yet again but realised the left leg still went up and down, so by juggling that and raising the jack to keep the van even, we could still hitch up.
We couldn’t get it quite high enough but dropped the air out of the back suspension on the truck and woohoo it just squeezed in.
Of course when we got here to Ingham we had to reverse that procedure so now we have lots of bits and pieces coming from Melbourne.
We think the left leg is ok but decided not to mess around and just get both legs with all the bells and whistles attached.

Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo
Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo at Wongabel

Black-faced Monarch at Yungaburra
Black-faced Monarch at Tinaburra

 

 

We did see the Male Riflebird again in the Wongabel forest before we left Yungaburra and Anthony got a ok photos but he was very high in the trees.
My Sister Denise and her hubby Mark were with us at the time and she is a whiz bang at spotting tree kangaroos so we also got some nice pics there.
It was a bit sad to leave that area as we get quite settled in Yungaburra but who knows….. maybe next year we will head up that way again.

 

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Another Tree Kangaroo from Wongabel

 

 

So there aren’t many photos and sorry, no video this time but hopefully we have a productive week here.

Bye for now Steph and Anthony.

 

 

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Dragon/Damselflies have been in very short supply, hopefully Tyto will be teaming with them.

Here is an Orange Threadtail Damselfly 

Still Birding up in the Atherton Tablelands

Featured Image : Rufous Fantail

 

 

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Certainly a prize bird for this region

Victoria’s Riflebird

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Press Play to View a snippet of our day at Lake Barrine


 

Tick tock tick tock……how time flies. It’s hard to believe another week plus has flown by so quickly.

We have been out and about pretty much every day. We keep doing the rounds of all our little hotspots, which is fantastic fun though some places have their little pitfalls.

Like Lake Barrine…..every time we visit, which is very often, we can’t pass up the award winning scones 🙄🙄 which is usually in the morning.

One day it took us around 4 hours to walk the 5 km circuit around the lake so of course we had to have lunch there as well.

So we are putting on some weight but figure when we get back to work on our shaking cherry pickers in Stanthorpe it will all miraculously melt away again.

 

 

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Just love the bright yellow plumage of the Northern Male Figbird

 

 

 

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I can never resist photographing a Pale-Yellow Robin

The weather hasn’t been the best really.

We had some hot days last week and all the birds and bugs seemed to be more abundant and then the weather turned back to almost wintery conditions.

I had to have my jumper on the last few days in the rainforests…..very chilly.

I don’t think the birds like it much either. This morning it’s drizzling so hopefully the sun pops out a bit later.

 

 

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The Peircing stare of a Spangled Drongo

 

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Press Play to view a short snippet of Hasties Swamp, Atherton

 

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Nankeen Night Heron

Plumed Egret and Friends

 

We are trying our best to get more photos and video of the male Victoria’s Riflebird.
He is just amazing to watch when he starts displaying.
We found a great broken tree stump in the Wongabel Forest with the male sitting on top.
He did start to display a little, a female did come through and he took off after her but did stay in the area so we are keen to go back when the sun comes out and try again for some Wow pics and video.

 

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Female Rufous Whistler

 

More Rainforest Birds

 

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Press Play to view another short Video snippet of

Curtain Fig Tree

and

Wongabel State Forest

 

Curtain Fig Tree at Yungaburra

 

We are coming up to our last weekend in this area so will have to start heading south again next week, but there will be plenty of nature stops along the way. Enjoy all the pics and videos.

Cheers Steph and Anthony.

 

 

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A not so nervous Yellow-footed Antechinus on the track at Lake Eacham

 

 

Back up in the Southern Tablelands

Featured Image – Pied Monarch (Adult Male)

 

Male Cains Birdwing
(Male) Cairns Birdwing Butterfly
Well all is just fantastic in our little world……
We are almost healthy again. I don’t know about anyone else but I must say whenever I get even the inkling of a sore throat I think I’ve come down with some deadly virus and probably the stress of that makes me go downhill even quicker.
But whatever we both had went on it’s way pretty quickly ( thank god ) and maybe I shouldn’t read the news so much….the stuff about viruses anyway. Watching the movie “ Contagen” on the way home on the plane didn’t help either😳😳
It certainly hasn’t stopped us getting out and about. It was great coming back to Yungaburra, we are even in the same van site as last time with the same neighbours we had last time, so it really was a bit like “coming home”.

 

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Juvenile Lovely Fairywren

Lovely Fairywrens

 

 

 

Gorgeous Green Ring-tail Possum with ultra cute Bub

 

 

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Press Play to view Steph’s Video Snippets

 


 

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Here I was wishing This (Adult male) Victoria’s Riflebird would hop down lower in the tree for a better Shot

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At that moment, to our amazement he dropped the fruit and followed it to the ground.

Life in Nature is soooooo good.

 

 

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The Apprentice

This Immature Victoria’s Riflebird is certainly not yet ‘dressed to impress’ a female, However is giving it a good go.

 

We have been very lucky with our wildlife spotting as you can see by the pics and

video……absolutely amazing. Many birds on our bucket list have just been appearing

before our eyes. Of course we are putting ourselves in the best places to see these

amazing animals.

 

 

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Graphic Flutterer Dragonfly

A Medley of Flutterers

 

 

 

Pied Monarch (Bucket List Bird)

Very Excited to finally photograph this stunning Bird at Lake Eacham

 

 

 

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Echidna           Always excited to see these amazing creatures.

 

 

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Grey Headed Robin

Rainforest Birds

The Golden Bowerbird is a story in itself. (Pictured above)
It’s the same bower at Mount Hypipamee where we got chased away by a very aggressive rather large male Cassowary two years ago. Terrifying I know but that was a while ago now and I mean….what are the chances of having another run in…plus we will really keep our eyes peeled.
So we found the bower and to our delight it has been worked on…lots of nice new mossy wallpaper, we heard the male bowerbird’s very loud distinctive chatter so settled down ready with camera and video in anticipation and then out of the corner of my eye I saw a big black shadow, quickly looked through my binoculars and saw the blue head of that monster cassowary heading our way…yikes….you’ve never seen us move so quick, we were out of there in a flash.
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Fresh lichen adorns the Bower of a Golden Bowerbird
After we settled down a bit, and the monster didn’t come out and chase us down the road, we decided we could sneak back later and just keep an eye out for him, pretty brave aren’t we🙄.
Well we did just that and never saw the Cassowary again, Anthony got a photo of what at first we thought was the female but turns out it’s a immature male without his adult colours yet ( this can take up to 7 years ).
A quick snap of the said “Blue Headed Monster”
We stayed for quite some time and never saw another Bowerbird come in and also we heard a horror story from another birder, that the adult pair that were at this site had been poached last year. Also some other pairs have been taken from other well know locations so that is pretty upsetting but as with all wildlife, if it’s pretty or has a nice voice or is rare, it sadly has a price tag on its head. We feel we are very fortunate to be able to see these amazing creatures while it’s still possible.

 

 

Grassland Birds

 

 

 

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Sharp-tailed Sandpiper at Lake Tinaroo

 

Other Birds

We have another week or so in this beautiful area so will get out as much as possible, there is a lot more action out in the rainforests now that the weather has warmed up. Please enjoy the pics and video.

Cheers and bye for now, Steph and Anthony.

 

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A good day for the Green Tree Snake … But sadly not so good for the Frog

 

Birds and Bugs

A male Painted Grasshawk (Seen in Stephanie’s Video)

 

 

Well we finally made the decision to move on. The weather has been very drizzly again the last few days.

Yesterday we drove back to Granite Gorge near Mareeba. You can bet if it’s cold and drizzly here in Yungaburra it’s about 5 degrees warmer and sunny over that way. As soon as you drive off the plateau north towards Mareeba you can just watch the temperature gauge increasing.

It’s a beautiful place in nature and there seems to be a lot more butterflies and dragonflies around the Gorge than anywhere else we have been so far. We did see quite a few birds there as well but we didn’t get there till nearly lunch time so could have done better with photos if we had of gotten there earlier. We will definetly go back there on our return trip.

 

We got lucky….. while touring the tablelands a flock of Sarus Cranes flew over our truck and just had enough time to grab a couple of inflight shots.

 

Grey-crowned Babbler drying off after wash
A Handsome pair of Black Swans
A female Rufous Whistler enjoying the late afternoon Sun

 

Tomorrow we are off to Mount Carbine for 3 nights before heading on to Cooktown. We are really excited to see some new places.

Not really new as we have been to these places before but now that we are always looking for critters it’s a totally different experience. It’s like our eyes are wide open now and are always scanning the trees, sky, grass etc….waiting for something to catch our eye, it’s really fantastic and makes us feel so alive.

We must have had blinkers on before in our old life as I don’t really remember seeing much wildlife when out and about.

 

It was exciting to capture this Orange Threadtail Damselfly Head on inflight.

 

Fresh Painted Grasshawk Dragonfly

 

Just a couple of Butterflies that managed to keep still for a Photo

 

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Press Play and enjoy Stephanie’s latest Video Snippets

 

Please enjoy our last video snippets and photos from the last few days and I hope we see some new and exciting things on our northward journey.

Cheers Steph and Anthony.

 

Upclose with a Peacock and Hen at Granite Gorge

Waterfalls and Wildlife : Atherton Tablelands

A surprise Echidna passes by at Lake Tinaroo

 

Waterfall Drive, Milla Milla – We couldn’t have asked for a better day

Waterfalls of Milla Milla

The weather did take a turn for the worse….. cold and drizzly for about 4 days. We were starting to wonder if we would ever see the sun again. The weather report kept saying the next day would be partly cloudy and when we woke up it was dark and drizzle drizzle, horrible.

We did take the opportunity though to revamp our kitchen, after 11 years of heavy duty use the laminate bench tops were very chipped and scuffed. We decided the simplest and of course cheapest option was to just cover them with marble look a like contact paper, not the cheapie paper though, this contact came from the US as we couldn’t get it here, it’s especially for benchtops. We also did some splash backs with these amazing ….. plastic ….. Tic Tac tiles. They came from England, again, not available here. Well we think it looks amazing even though it is all plastic, so have added some pics at the end of this Blog.

 

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Lumholtz Tree Kangaroo spotting at the Nerada Tea Factory Grounds 

(Luckily we have a long lens to capture these critters high in the tree tops)

 

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Press Play to view Tree Kangaroo Vid


 

Due to the cool and wet weather on the Atherton Tablelands our beloved Dragonflies are few and far between.

Male and Female Fiery Skimmer Dragonflies

 

So back to the weather, the blue skies are back and our spirits have returned with it. We have been out and about everywhere. We just love the tablelands, waterfalls, lakes, wildlife, rainforests and of course, great cafes. What more could you want.

We did live up here for 4 years in Kuranda, but realised we don’t need to live here or anywhere really. With a house on wheels you can just visit the best places at the right time of year, if your lucky of course.

No horrible wet seasons to contend with.

 

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A showcase of stunning Rainbow Bee-eaters

 

 

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This gorgous Red-legged Pademellon was spotted catching the morning sun through a gap in the rainforest

Anthony has been having a feast with the bird photos lately…..we found a little birdie hotspot down by Lake Tinaroo. We can just walk there from our van which is fantastic, this afternoon we were so focused on the brown cuckoo dove eating tobacco bush berries when the echidna just ambled past us. What an amazing creature, we just love seeing these precious little animals that must really be struggling with our human impact.

 

Brown Cuckoo-dove up close and personal

 

Doves Galore on the Tablelands


 

We spotted this Pelican and Little black Cormorant through a small gap in the Rainforrest at Lake Eacham

 

 

White-breasted Woodswallow

We also drove out to the Nerada Tea Plantation which is the best place to see Tree Kangaroos. Its quite a drive but so worth it. I don’t know why but they are always around there somewhere, fantastic. They have even cordoned off their habitat with barbed wire with signs everywhere to keep us out, how cool is that?? I’d rather they didn’t use barbed wire but these amazing animals really need our help. Their habitat is rapidly disappearing so it’s great to see a big company keeping a nice place for them.

 

This little Pale-Yellow Robin is just way too cute

 

This Yellow Honeyeater was observed guarding these Cathedral Bells

 

And a few other critters we stumbled across

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Press play to watch Stephanie’s Snippets

We have to move on soon if we want to get up to Cooktown before the weather heats up, though it will be hard to leave here. I guess we can always come back on our way south again.

At the moment we keep putting off leaving. The joys of freedom.

Enjoy all the amazing photos.

Bye for now, Steph and Anthony.

 

Our Kitchen Makeover

Before

 

After