Out with the beast!

Butterfly Bay on Great Keppel Island has more treasures to reveal.  A morning walk towards the Western side of the island, to Svendsen Beach, promises to be a rich photo opportunity for birds.  So this time, we take “the beast” with us: the Canon 100-400 lens.  It is a big heavy lens, but it is generally worth the effort of lugging it on my shoulder, with the monopod for extra support.

Chris with the 'Beast', a Canon 100-400 lens

Chris with the ‘Beast’

We are not disappointed!  No sooner have we landed the dinghy, that we see a tiny red-capped dotterel on the beach and discover her nest, which explains her antics: “Pick me, pick me, I’m injured!”  She is pretending to have a broken wing to lure us away from her eggs.

We then follow the track to Svendsen’s Beach and discover why our bay is called Butterfly Bay: hundreds of blue and black butterflies flitting in the under-storey.  You could not get more in a butterfly enclosure!

And the discoveries continue, a Brahminy kite perched in a tree keeps an eye on us until we get too close and it takes flight!

Next, to top it all off, Wade discovers a spindle-shaped nest suspended from the twigs of a tree on the side of the track.  It is elaborate, light as a feather, made from grasses, leaves and spider webs, and has a little roof over the entrance.  We sit silently and wait to see if its owner flies in, and it does: a brilliantly coloured yellow-bellied sunbird!

This walk is such a treat and I am so glad I lugged the big lens!  Be sure to display the gallery in full screen slideshow, by clicking on the first image.

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