Thanks to Martin Cachard, I have now decreased my list of bogey birds by one. On Monday he showed me the beautiful Black-winged Monarch, a bird I had feared I would never see. Over the years, I have visited the tip of Cape York twice and Iron Range once, and always dipped on this elusive bird. Thank you, Martin! And a big 'thank you' to Judy Leitch too, who organized the trip. Sine qua non.
McIvor River, far north Queensland
It was an early start the next morning. Judy and I drove to Smithfield, where Martin picked us up at 4.15. It was a pleasant drive north, watching the huge golden moon set. We arrived at McIvor River at 9.30 and saw our first Black-winged Monarch at 9.40. Howzat! It was a female, and the silvery grey of her plumage was perfect. Not long later we watched a male sing to us. He, too, had beautiful grey plumage. However, his wings were not as black as I'd expected and I was disappointed that his chestnut breast was not as bright as I'd thought it would be. Poor bird, to be judged by my uneducated expectations! To be honest, I would not have cared what he looked like, I was simply delighted to see a bird that I'd been trying to see for decades.
|Rufous Owl - Photo: Judy Leitch|