Sometimes parts of Cairns become one giant game of spot the bird, in particular the Esplanade once the tide is out. The other afternoon as part of our Nova activity, after the lessons, we wandered around Cairns soaking up food. Our last stop was for gelato which we ate sitting on the Esplanade. It was extremely relaxing. Despite the copious amounts of people that are usually down there it always has that same relaxing, holiday feel that I absorb when I am there. On this day watching the antics of wild water birds on the fringe of the coast was interesting and made us want to sit for a long time. The may different breeds of birds where very happy hanging out in the same area, most busy doing their own thing like eating or sleeping. Some were very individual like the lone pelican that staying in the water, swimming around, when the rest of his flock had left the water. I just guess it liked swimming.
A Whimbrel looking for a feast in the mud.
A lone Great Egret looking around in the shallows.
Sandpiper, seagull and whimbrel hanging out.
Then of cause their were the pelicans, stealing the show simply because of their size.
There started off being one group of pelicans in the water and one on the mud flat when we arrived.
It was interesting to watch the ones in the water feeding and how much of a synchronised, group activity it was.
After swimming and feeding they were mostly interested in cleaning and sleeping. The cleaning part was rather amusing, can you imagine trying to preen with a beak that big?