Honeyeaters of Lowan Conservation Park

Lowan Conservation Park

Lowan Conservation Park

Lowan Conservation Park is a reserve of remnant mallee scrub in the midst of wheat and sheep farms. It is several hundred hectares in size with a rainfall of probably about 300mm in an average year. It is about 120km east of Adelaide in South Australia.

When the mallee trees are in flower the honeyeaters abound. I have visited when there have been no trees flowering and consequently very few honeyeaters. On other occasions I haven’t know where to point my binoculars first, there are so many birds. On these exciting occasions the birding is simply wonderful. I have observed the following species in or near the park:

  • Red Wattlebird – resident and common
  • Singing Honeyeater – resident and common
  • White Eared Honeyeater – resident and common
  • Spiny Cheeked Honeyeater – probably resident
  • Brown Headed Honeyeater – resident and common
  • Yellow Plumed Honeyeater – probably resident
  • Striped Honeyeater – regular visitor spring, summer
  • White Fronted Honeyeater – possibly resident
Spiny Cheeked Honeyeater

Spiny Cheeked Honeyeater

Other species which could occur when the conditions are right include:

  • Purple Gaped Honeyeater
  • Yellow Throated Miner
  • White Plumed Honeyeater
  • New Holland Honeyeater
  • Black Honeyeater
  • Tawny Crowned Honeyeater

6 Responses to “Honeyeaters of Lowan Conservation Park”

  1. Mike Tarburton says:

    Well done Trevor – good to see – though I am still having trouble locating Lowan CP on Google Earth!

  2. Trevor says:

    Hi there Mike,

    Lowan Conservation Park is about 15km south of Bowhill, 30km NE of Murray Bridge and 20km NW of Karoonda (approx distance only)

  3. Colin says:

    Have been to Lowan on day trips 3 times now for very little reward in late Summer to mid Winter but little in the way of bird life, very arid and dry, bearing in mind also there has been severe drought for the last few years. The flies can be maddening in warm weather and take some advise, don’t go there at anytime except Winter or early to mid Spring.

    Went again on Oct 12th 2010 for an overnight stay and the Mallee was just starting to flower in patches. The first day was slow going for birds, the second day just before departing was magic birding and photography. In one area I photographed nesting Sittellas at very close range, great pictures taken. Black-eared Miners which was real bonus, White-cheeked Honeyeaters, Spiny-cheeks, Brown Headed Honeyeaters, Red-cap Robins, Singing Honeyeaters and best of all a Chestnut Quail-thrush with chicks at very close range, best pictures I’ve ever seen of this species. Also found quite a few Nightjars at night using play back to entice them in, and I have heard Spotted Nightjars in the nearby regions calling through the night.
    So it seems when the Mallee flowers it is bird heaven, and as I write I’m preparintg to go there again for two nights { October 19th 2010 }…hoping to find more Honeyeaters and maybe a Spotted Nightjar.

  4. Trevor says:

    Hi there Colin,

    Thanks for your comments and for sharing your excitement with your sightings. I didn’t comment at the time you posted your comments because I was very busy finishing my masters degree.

    I reread your comments this morning and have questions about several of your sightings. White-cheeked Honeyeaters are confined to coastal eastern Australia and extreme SW Western Australia. Did you mean New Holland Honeyeaters (common there) or White-eared Honeyeaters (also common at Lowan)?

    I also have a question about the Black-eared Miners. According to HANZAB they haven’t been seen in that area since about 1985. While it is possible you saw BE Miners, are you sure they were that species as true BE Miners are quite rare and threatened in SA? It is more likely that they were Yellow-throated Miners or a hybrid YT Miner x BE Miner.

    If you are certain they are BE Miners – and/or have good photos – it is worth reporting this sighting to both Birds SA and Birds Australia so that extra conservation measures can be put in place and this isolated population can be both studied and protected. If they are pure BE Miners this would represent a valuable gene pool for future conservation programmes. It would be a significant and exciting find.

    Having said all that, the species historically was present in the area. With the excellent rains this year and the prolific flowering of some mallee areas, it is entirely possible that this population has moved to Lowan from Gluepot (N of Waikerie, the nearest population) and is extending its range once again.

    I look forward to your response.

  5. Colin says:

    I stand corrected on the Black-eared Miner sighting, Yellow-throated was the correct ID, and White-cheeked HE should of read White-eared HE…oops, my typo on that one.

    Anybody like bird pix ?…..here’s some of mine to peruse


  6. […] few Sundays ago we had a break in our cold, wintry weather and we went for a drive to Lowan Conservation Park, a 40 minute drive north east from home in Murray Bridge, South Australia. The park is about 15 […]

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