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Birdlife on the Range

Mar 12, 2019 | Environment, Hinterland Life

by Paul Fraser and Ken Cross

 Bird watching has been a popular hobby in the United Kingdom for decades, possibly even centuries. Australians have been slow to take up ‘birding’ despite the fact that we have some 800 species of incredibly diverse, unique and beautiful birds. But it is changing!

 There are now birding groups, clubs, individuals, and formal organisations all over the country. The Blackall Range area is no exception, if you live here, then you are in one of the best places in Australia to go outdoors and enjoy the birds.

 With the increasing interest in birds, better camera equipment, and the readily available networking possibilities, birding has gone to another level for many. Binoculars, camera and computer have now become standard kit for serious birders.

 Maleny resident Paul Fraser is but one of the new breed; a Born-Again Birder! Upon retiring and settling into the quiet Range life he decided on birds as his new quest.  His aim? To put as many birds as possible within his camera frame.

Rainbow bee-eater – this colourful species is often seen hawking for flying insects from a prominent perch or heard high above via its chirruping call – image by Paul Fraser

 Paul admits, “When I started I was keen but I didn’t know that much and when I moved to Maleny I didn’t know many bird watchers.”

 This is where the computer came in; Paul started a new Facebook page called Blackall Range Birds and almost instantly created a community of like-minded people from all over the Sunshine Coast. Here they can post their pictures and talk birds. Created just over a year ago, the page has nearly 500 members.

 And, like Paul, many enjoy taking photos and learning more about their birds.

 If you would like to learn more about birds, the Blackall Range Birds Facebook page is a great place to start.

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