Tamworth Birdwatchers 20 Anniversary 22 February 2018 
Over 40 people attended the 20th Anniversary of the Tamworth Birdwatchers on February 22nd.   Foundation members, past committee members and all current members were invited, with the exception of a few whose contact details could not be found.  A great evening was enjoyed by all.
Committee members provided a meal of cold meats and salads which was well received and thanks go to them for all their efforts.
All surviving past Presidents of the group attended.  It was especially good to have Joke Myer there.  She had travelled all the way from Mackay in Queensland to be with us.  The biggest thrill however was having one of our founders, Jack Peattie, with us.  Now in his 90s and very hard of hearing, he still thoroughly enjoyed being back with the old crowd.  What a shame co-founder Geoff Mitchell was not able to attend.
A highlight of the night was Jack’s cutting of the cake.  The lovely gluten free fruit cake had been made for us by Eric Fair.  It was subsequently iced by Ann Faulkner who had designed a stunning Eastern Rosella in icing to grace the top.  It was such a shame to cut it!
Remembering the past was the theme for the rest of the evening.  It commenced with the resurrection of “The Green Budgie Quiz”.  This trivia night used to be an annual event in the early days of the group and was always good for a laugh.  Brian Leslie took out the award this time.
Joan Dunne and Eric Fair then showed us photos taken at various campouts and outings, mostly from the first few years of the group.  Joan and Eric spent a lot of time organising this, so thank you.  It was a time for nostalgia.  Everyone was encouraged to tell us any memories that the photos prompted and it was especially enjoyable for the people who had been members from the early days.  How young we all looked then!
All in all it was a great night.  Lovely to catch up with old friends and for them to meet our newer members.  Lovely too to demonstrate that our group is still going strong after 20 years.
As Jack Peattie said on the way home, “It wasn’t a good night, it was a very good night”.
Annabel Ashworth

Pilliga Forest Birdwatchers Outing to Dead Filly Tank 17 February 2018
Present: M. Dahlem, Time spent: 6:00-9:30 am
Cool early, about 20º C with light breeze, then heating up rapidly, with increasing wind. Some mistletoe flowers in casuarinas; also some fruiting shrubs. Except for the water in the tank/dam, it is "dryzabone".
Bird list, 32 species:  Peaceful Dove, Bar-shouldered Dove, Common Bronzewing, Cockatiel, Turquoise Parrot (25-30!), Australian Owlet-nightjar, Laughing Kookaburra, White-throated Treecreeper, Brown Treecreeper, Speckled Warbler, Inland Thornbill, Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Weebill, Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Striped Honeyeater, White-plumed Honeyeater, Yellow-throated Miner, Eastern Yellow Robin, Red-capped Robin, White-browed Babbler, Grey-crowned Babbler, Crested Bellbird (2), Rufous Whistler, Grey Shrike-thrush, Willie Wagtail, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Grey Butcherbird, Pied Currawong, Spotted Bowerbird, Australian Raven, Double-barred Finch, Mistletoebird.
The bird of the day, without any doubt, was the Crested Bellbird.
But there is more to this than "just" 32 species:
While the Crested Bellbird is on the eastern edge of its range, Turquoise Parrot, Speckled Warbler and also Pied Currawong are all at the western edge of their ranges. And having them there, all together in one spot at the same time, and then having a flock of 25-30 Turquoise Parrots right on the edge of their range, is really special (normally those species would not meet, because their ranges only just about touch, but don't really overlap by much).
Michael Dahlem

Tamworth Regional Botanic Gardens – Saturday 24 February 2018
With the anniversary of 200 years since John Oxley explored the area and Tamworth becoming established the Tamworth Historical Society invited community groups to mark the date with an activity. Tamworth Birdwatchers offered to provide bird walks to the community at the Regional Botanic Gardens and also to join the celebration of our own 20 Anniversary.
Despite media promotion of the event only a small number of people joined our activities for the morning.  It was good to see some members of the public who did join in and their interest in finding out more about birds and our group does lead to our presence in the community.
Following our walks through the gardens, including into the Aboriginal area, we identified 34 bird species, which was quite good considering it was a grey day weather wise, making it difficult to see the birds. 
Birds seen:  Australian Wood Duck, Australian Magpie, Rock Dove, Laughing Kookaburra, Grey Fantail, Pied Currawong, Brown Honeyeater, Spotted Dove, Double-barred Finch, Willie Wagtail, Magpie-lark, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Striated Thornbill, Eastern Rosella, Silvereye, Rainbow Lorikeet, White-plumed Honeyeater, Galah, Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Red-browed Finch, Superb Fairy-wren, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, (YON), White-browed Scrubwren, Eastern Spinebill, Rufous Whistler, Speckled Warbler, Peaceful Dove, Australian Raven, Crimson Rosella, White-throated Treecreeper, Common Blackbird, White-faced Heron, Pied Butcherbird, Yellow Thornbill.
Marianne Terrill

Tuesday Bird Outing to Tamworth Mountain Bike Park 27 February 2018
Nine birdos were lucky to finally have a cooler day for our outing to the Tamworth Mountain Bike Park Forest Road, North Tamworth. This is a great spot for birding – after three visits, we have seen 59 species with eight new ones added this time. There are good picnic facilities and clean toilets.
We followed the Yuundu Warruwi Aboriginal Culture Trail, which took us through light woodland, open grassland, down through a gully with a few pools of water in the otherwise dry creek. After morning tea, we headed in the other direction along one of the bike tracks but only saw two more species. Best sightings for the morning were Joan’s favourite Crested Shrike-tit and three Speckled Warblers.
Bird List: Australian Wood Duck, Spotted Dove, Common Bronzewing, Crested Pigeon, Peaceful Dove, White-faced Heron, Black Kite, Galah, Rainbow Lorikeet, Little Lorikeet, Eastern Rosella, Red-rumped Parrot, Laughing Kookaburra, Rainbow Bee-eater, Dollarbird, Brown Treecreeper, Superb Fairy-wren, Speckled Warbler, White-plumed Honeyeater, Noisy Miner, Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Crested Shrike-tit, Rufous Whistler, Grey Shrike-thrush, Dusky Woodswallow, Grey Butcherbird, Pied Butcherbird, Australian Magpie, Pied Currawong, Willie Wagtail, Australian Raven, Magpie-lark, Apostlebird, Silvereye, Welcome Swallow, Fairy Martin, Tree Martin, Common Blackbird, Double-barred Finch, Red-browed Finch
Terri Mower
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