Monday 24 April 2017
I went to visit nest 2 for the first time in 2017. When I crossed onto the grassland adjacent to the nest tree, I was met with a most horrific sight. There were white markers all over the land, with lot numbers written on them. I paced the distance from the nearest one to the nest tree: it was a mere 30 m.
I looked towards the grassy slope that was my other access to the nest tree. A smooth graded road is now there.
I thought this nest was safe. What are people thinking? They will drive another pair of White-bellied Sea-Eagles – a Vulnerable species in NSW – away from their nest, right before/at nesting time. If this degree of development is being carried out all over the state, I can’t see the species lasting for very long. Needless to say, I didn’t see the sea-eagles.
Monday 17 July 2017
I drove around the development that overlooks the nesting area. I could not locate the actual nest tree or see the birds flying. I did see another pair of raptors but could not identify them. It looks as if more of the land has been turned to soil/mud.
Wednesday 26 July 2017
I went to the eagle tree and saw more widespread clearing of the land.
There’s no doubt that the developers are planning to cover all the available land with houses, irrespective of the nest right there. This time I found lot markers in the trees that are around and behind the nest tree. At the right of the photo below is the base of the nest tree (nearly half the photo) and in the middle to the left is a white lot marker with a pink ribbon around it.
There was a lone bulldozer working. I didn’t see either sea-eagle.
Wednesday 16 August 2017
I walked down from the top entrance and there were no vehicles working on the site. The land was flat, smooth and dry.
I saw 2 black kites, so I went over to the tree where they had attempted to nest last year. There was a small nest still there.
They didn’t fly over to it but one was eating something red while on the wing.
I saw a nankeen kestrel as well. After I had been there for an hour, I saw a white-bellied sea-eagle! It seemed to have something on its belly. I wonder if it is a brood patch. It flew over the area in general, including the nest tree, but didn’t land.
Wednesday 30 August 2017
I arrived at about 4:55 pm and left at sunset at about 5:25 pm. I saw a whistling kite flying but no sea-eagles. I saw two lot markers about 27 m from the base of the nest tree on the cleared land.
A sea-eagle may have been in the nest, but the pair last year saw or heard me even if I was as quiet as I could possibly be, creeping through the bushes in full camo and more than 100 m away. They always flew straight over to me.
Wednesday 6 September 2017
I arrived at about 4:15 pm and left at about 5:10 pm. I didn’t see any sea-eagles but saw a pair of black kites around the tree they attempted to nest in last year. The site is quiet: no activity and all the heavy machinery is gone. Sulphur-crested cockatoos are nesting in the eagle tree.
Tuesday 19 September 2017
I arrived around 4:00 pm and left at about 5:30 pm. I didn’t see any sea-eagles. There weren’t any vehicles or people on the site.
I saw the black kites in the tree in which they built the nest last year.
I also saw a pair of nankeen kestrels and I think they could be nesting in a tree not far from the black kite tree.
Wednesday 22 November 2017
I went back a few weeks ago and was shocked to find I couldn’t get onto the site anymore at all. I went to my lower entry and the land was all dug up and trucks were working on it, right beside where the black kite nest was. I think I saw a black kite flying over the devastation. There was new built up soil from one end to the other.
Today I went to the other side and looked across. I couldn’t see the nest tree so I don’t know if the developers have taken it out or if it is hidden from sight. There was no sign of the black kites and the soil goes right past their nest.
The beautiful little nankeen kestrels that I thought were nesting in one of two trees in the middle of the site have had their trees – and maybe their eggs or chicks – removed.
I feel real pain and incredible sadness when I look at the site. If this is happening all over the country it won’t be long before many birds are finding it hard to breed at all.