At 10:30 yesterday morning Nick and I decided to ditch our planned Radjah trip and head south instead to attempt bagging a lifer, the Black Noddy. The Noddy was first seen off Long Reef last week by Mark Young but it wasn't until Mr. Stowe's phone call yesty morning that made me want to tick off this little beauty. By 2pm we were on the ground in Collaroy and searching for the bird.As we walked out onto the rock platform we stopped for some Welcome Swallows perched on the rocks. Their colours can only be appreciated in the afternoon sunlight. We managed to creep up on them and obtained cracking shots.
Closer to the waters edge a fair sized group of waders were feeding on the rocks. Ruddy Turnstone, Red-necked Stint, Pacific Golden Plover, Double-banded Plover, Sooty Oystercatcher and a Grey-tailed Tattler made up the flock.
We finally made it to the furthest most rock and there was the Noddy fishing in the white wash, its white cap glowing in the sunlight. It did several passes of the ledge before landing nearby. We slowly crept around so the light was in a more favourable position and started to take 100 odd pics each of the bird in many different positions. He was so tame that we were able to creep to within 4m as he preened and surveyed his surrounds.
After a while an Australian Raven flew over and started harrassing the Noddy which eventually took off (as did the Raven after a rock was somehow thrown in his general direction lol). We watched as the Noddy flew out to sea and then turned back only to land right in front of us again....happy days. Eventually we decided we'd had enough of clicking the same bird in the same position so we made our way back to the waders.Down I went, dragging my arse through the water, just to get that nice low angle to my pics....shesh I'm turning into a photographer...on no!!!! Its amazing how close you can get to waders when your soaking your butt in salt water. The Stints barely moved as I approached but the Double-banded Plovers and Tattler were much more wary.We were only on Long Reef for 1.5hrs but in that time I snapped 188 pictures of 7 species. We were over the moon with our efforts and the excitment was still with us when we got home at 10:30pm.....damn F3 being closed, stupid trucks, stupid 4.5hr wait on the Pacific Hwy! Oh well.
542 = Black Noddy, Long Reef, 12/4/10