Mungalla Station is a cattle property located approx. 12 km east of Ingham. The property is owned by the Nywaigi Aboriginal Land Corporation and managed by the Mungalla Aboriginal Business Corporation. Their mandate to "...improve the economic and social position of our people..." is being achieved through property management and cultural and eco-tourism.
The wetland on the property is a treasure being brought back to life by careful environmental management.
In the 90 minutes we had exploring the wetland, we found a variety of wading birds including Masked Lapwing, Red-necked Stint, Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterel, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Marsh Sandpiper and Latham Snipe. All were too far away for any good photography so I concentrated on the many birds flying overhead.
|Brolga, Mungalla Wetlands|
|Magpie Goose, Mungalla Wetlands|
Several small terns were fishing right in front of a group of photographers
but their quick movement and the poor light made it difficult to identify them with any certainty. These are the best photographs I could manage.
|Whiskered Tern, Mungalla Station|
I am not 100% convinced but the best identification I can come up with is Whiskered Tern. The only alternative is that they are White-winged Black Tern. WWBTs are northern hemisphere summer breeders that migrate to Australia in our spring. Early arrivals may retain some breeding colouration. I am not familiar enough with the changes of these birds as they move into and out of their breeding colouration. These birds have retained the red legs and bill there is no evidence of black plumage so I think it unlikely they are WWBTs.
As the sun was setting we walked back to the designated pick up spot where a flock of Nankeen Night-Herons were roosting.
|Nankeen Night-Heron, Mungalla Station|