Thursday 28 September 2023

Coober Pedy across to Witchelina, South Australia.

Crossing from the Center of the North towards the start of the North East.
Australia, Day Twenty One.
Opal Mines on the way out of Coober Pedy.
Unfortunately today we were to say goodbye to Graham as he had to head off back south and we were heading off east to start the second part of the Adventure up in the North of the State.
Singing Honeyeater (Gavicalis virescens).
Central Bearded Dragon (Pogona vitticeps).
After getting stocked up and fuel we headed off in our different directions after an amazing trip out into the Bush to the West of the State and now the three of us were going back out into the bush but in the East of the State but today we were crossing from the Stuart Highway at Coober to the Outback Highway at Marree and then slightly South and then back West to a camp ground at Witchelina Station.
Chestnut-breasted Whiteface (Aphelocephala pectoralis).
Chestnut-breasted Whiteface (Aphelocephala pectoralis).
Around Coober we started the days list with Little Corella (Cacatua sanguinea), Feral (Columba livia) and Crested Pigeon (Ocyphaps lophotes), Little Crow (Corvus bennetti), Welcome Swallow (Hirundo neoxena) in town and Little Grassbird (Poodytes gramineus), Black-fronted Dotterel (Elseyornis melanops), Australian Crake (Porzana fluminea), Galah (Eolophus roseicapilla), Singing Honeyeater (Gavicalis virescens) and Zebra Finch (Taeniopygia guttata) along the sewage treatment stream.
Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis).
Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis).
We left town and went South towards the Hutchinson Monument where we drove a couple of the track and to our surprise we quite quickly found a couple of the very smart Chestnut-breasted Whiteface (Aphelocephala pectoralis), the rarest and most difficult to see of the three Whitefaces.
Near Coober.
Orange Chat (Epthianura aurifrons) female.
In the same area we also saw Central Bearded Dragon (Pogona vitticeps), Nankeen Kestrel (Falco cenchroides), Brown Falcon (Falco berigora), Little Crow, Spotted Harrier (Circus assimilis), Crimson Chat (Epthianura tricolor), Zebra Finch and Budgies(Melopsittacus undulatus).
Rufous Fieldwren (Calamanthus campestris).
Rufous Fieldwren (Calamanthus campestris).
We returned to Coober and then took the William Creek Road towards our Lunch stop at William Creek, on the way we picked up a fast moving Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis) which was gone far too quickly for us to get any decent photo's unfortunately.
Grey Teal (Anas gracilis), Red-necked Avocet (Recurvirostra novaehollandiae) and Pied Stilt (Himantopus leucocephalus).
As we drove we added Orange Chat (Epthianura aurifrons), Black (Milvus migrans) and Whistling Kite (Haliastur sphenurus), Black-faced Woodswallow (Artamus cinereus) and a single Rufous Fieldwren (Calamanthus campestris) which I had failed to get a picture of on my last trip so I was pleased this bird showed much better. 
Inland Dotterel (Peltohyas australis).

Inland Dotterel (Peltohyas australis) chick.

Further along the road we made a stop at a creek which had some pools of water still in it and we picked up Grey Teal (Anas gracilis), Pied Stilt (Himantopus leucocephalus), Red-necked Avocet (Recurvirostra novaehollandiae), Red-capped Plover (Charadrius ruficapillus), Black-fronted Dotterel (Elseyornis melanops), Purple-backed Fairywren (Malurus assimilis) and a new species of Reptile that still needs a name.
The inhospitable lands around Blanche Cup.

Blanche Cup.

After Lunch we continued on East along the Oodnadatta Track but turned off to have a look at Blanche Cup Mound Pool at Wabma Kadarbu Mound Springs and then continued on towards Marree, on the way we saw White-backed Swallow (Cheramoeca leucosterna), Masked Lapwing (Vanellus miles), Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida), Inland Dotterel (Peltohyas australis) one adult and a chick, White-winged Triller (Lalage tricolor) and Fairy Martin (Petrochelidon ariel). 
My room for the night at Whitchelina.
We reach Marree and then dropped south to Farina and the back on to the tracks to our camping ground at Witchelina Station, on the way and at the Station we saw Galah (Eolophus roseicapilla), Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae), Pacific Black Duck (Anas superciliosa), Little Corella (Cacatua sanguinea), Willie-wagtail (Rhipidura leucophrys) and on dusk a Spotted Nightjar (Eurostopodus argus) which flew passed a couple of times and called several times.

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