Monday, July 28, 2014

Beautiful Birds and Flora at Highfields Reserve by Tracie Louise Photography.

Photographer Tracie Louise, has again visited the Charles and Motee Rogers bushland reserve and has allowed us to share some of her beautiful photos of the birds and flora that she photographed.  We love seeing her photos and really appreciate her sharing what catches her eye when she takes a walk on the nature trail.  Thank you Tracie.  You can view Tracie's website here and follow her on facebook.

Beautiful Wattles in Flower by Tracie Louise Photography at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve

Female Australian King Parrot by Tracie Louise Photography at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve

Laughing Kookaburra by Tracie Louise Photography at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve

Common Bronzewing by Tracie Louise Photography at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve

Tracie even makes the weeds look good!  by Tracie Louise Photography at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Friends Brave the Cold at Reserve Working Bee

5 brave souls turned up for a working-bee at the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve yesterday - braving the cold and icy winds. Gale force winds lashed the Toowoomba Region with the Toowoomba Chronicle reporting strong winds as fast as 69 kmh. The south westerly gusts also brought the temperature in Toowoomba down to below 0 degrees for most of the day. The committed team managed to find a place in the sun, within the reserve to escape the wind, performing further weed removal within the reserve. Their efforts were followed with morning-tea and a catch-up at the Highfields Fitness & Recreation Centre next door.

The next Friends Group Meet will be on Friday 15th August, meeting at 9.00am at the front of the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve on Community Court, Highfields.

Rogers Rainforest Walk by Tracie Louise Photography

Rainforest Walk at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve - Guest Post by Tracie Louise Photography.

One thing I am very conscious of when exploring our countries natural beauty is to remember to look at the small things. It's easy to be impressed by tall majestic trees and bird filled canopies, but it's the tiny things that can have such a big impact.

Recently I visited a small pocket of Rainforest (Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve) just 5 minutes from home, with a 30 minute walking track through it. I decided to go for a walk through there right after last nights rain, and it made for some pretty effects as the morning sun came out.

This photo below is taken in macro of a spider. I was walking through the reserve with my 500mm lens on, hoping to do some bird spotting, however I didn't see any after the rain, and the only other thing a 500mm lens is good for is macro at long distance. There were a surprising amount of spiders there considering how wet it was the day I was there.

Spider at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve, Highfields by Tracie Louise Photography

 Each time I drive past the reserve I am in awe of the beauty of the trees.  I simple adore nature and am passionate about helping to preserve it. "Drop of Dew" featured below, is one of my favourite images, it is actually used on my business card.

"Drop of Dew" by Tracie Louise Photography
I very much look forward to seeing what else I can capture during my next visit to this wonderful little pocket of rainforest. I look forward to assisting the Friends of Rogers Reserve with their conservation efforts - this kind of work is what I live for.

All images in this post were Shot with Nikon D7100, 500mm lens at Charles & Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve, Highfields, Queensland, Australia. by Tracie Louise Photography.

A photographic print of a  "Drop of Dew" by Tracie Louise Photography is available to purchase from Red Bubble here...

View the Tracie Louise Photography Website here: and follow on Facebook here:

Linking with I Heart Macro - 21/07/14

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Gould's Wattled Bat found at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve Highfields

A small bat specimen was found on a cold windy Sunday, 6th July 2014 about 2pm under the big tree near the Rogers Drive entrance to the Charles and Motee Rogers Reserve, Highfields by Greg Lukes.  Greg reports that it had rained 1.6mm on the Saturday 5th then was a cold windy day on the Sunday 6th. Greg collected the specimen and passed it on to Rod Hobson (Resource Ranger, South West Region, Queensland Parks & Wildlife Service Department of National Parks) for identification.

Rod kindly had a look at the bat specimen and has informed Greg that it is in fact a Gould’s Wattled Bat (Chalinolobus gouldii) (adult female), FA 43.63 mm. The specemin was retained for the Queensland Museum’s reference collection and Rod also put the record on their database, WildNet. Greg has been credited with the record in both instances. Well done Greg!

Many thanks to Rod Hobson for his expertise in identifying this bat and to Greg Lukes for finding it, and passing it on to Rod for positive identification.  (Photo to come)

Gould's Watled Bat (Chalinolobus gouldii) is named after the English Naturalist John Gould. They live in small colonies of up to 30 and can be found in tree hollows. They are one of the most common bats in south-eastern Australia. They can travel more than 10km from their roost when foraging for insects at night. They diet is varied and can include moths, cockroaches, stoneflies, crickets, cicada and many other flying and non flying insects. They have a swift and direct flight battern, but when feeding the bat circles and dives. The main predators and threats to the Gould's Wattled Bat are Cats, carpet pythons, goannas, hawks, owls and butcherbirds, Loss of tree hollows and wildfire.

(Information Sources: Greg Lukes, Rod Hobson - Resource Ranger, Queensland Parks & Wildlife Service, Wildlife of Greater Brisbane by Queensland Museum,


Friday, July 11, 2014

Proposal for 4 Lane Road Widening for O'Brien Rd Highfields.

The High Country News, Highfields has made mention of the recently discussed proposal for 4 lane road widening for O'Brien Road at Highfields in their newspaper article titled "Business hears of plans for future development"  reported by Miles Noller, published on 8th of July 2014. (see below).

The article mentions many future changes for Highfields that were discussed at a recent meeting of the Highfields and District Business Connections Group last week.

Specifically, the mentioning of the proposal to widen O'Brien Road at Highfields to four lanes to cope with the growth of the town and the planned town centre which will be located  close by.  This mention of the road widening proposal has stood out as an area of major concern for the fate of the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve.  I have personally contacted Cr Bill Cahill regarding this newspaper article and asked for copies of the plans that were shown at the meeting, to which he attended. I have expressed that while I understood that the Toowoomba Regional Council needs to plan infrastructure to cope with the high-growth of the Highfields area, I believe that none of the last patch of remnant bushland in the centre of Highfields (Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve) should be sacrificed for such plans.

In High Country Herald Newspaper (18th March 2014 Edition), journalist Miles Noller confirmed plans for future road widening on O'Brien Road to four lanes for the future.  Based on the a news report the rumored road widening for O'Brien Road, Highfields to 4 lanes, (which would result in mass tree-clearing and land loss within the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve), is something that was planned to occur within 10 years as advised by Mike Brady, General Manager Infrastructure Services Group, TRC. Read the 18th March 2014 Article Here...

I will update this post once I have received a response from Cr Cahill and further information about the mentioned road widening proposal.

Full Newspaper featuring this article can be viewed online here.

J Gray.

"Business hears of plans for future development"  reported by Miles Noller, published on 8th of July 2014.  Featuring mention of the proposal to widen O'Brien Road to 4 Lanes. See Highlighted Sections.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Long Billed Corella at Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve

These photos were taken of a lone Long-Billed Corella (Cacatua tenuirostris) high in a large eucalyptus tree at the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve last month (20th June 2014).  Long-Billed Corella's are normally found in the extreme south-east of Australia, from south-eastern South Australia through western Victoria, to southern New South Wales. However, these short-crested birds have established populations in other parts of eastern Australia, including Highfields, predominantly in the Reis Road vicinity.  Some may confuse the Long-Billed Corella with the similar Little Corella which is locally common, however they can be distinguished easily by the long, slim upper bill and the bright orange and red patches around the birds bill and on the upper chest.

Long-billed Corella (Cacatua tenuirostris) at the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve, Highfields - 20/06/14

The Toowoomba Bird Observers Club have been keeping records about the Highfields, Reis Road, Long-Billed Corella population for some years (which are suspected to have begun from escaped avian pets) and started looking into this further from August 2006, requesting photographs and submissions of  "rare-bird reports" for records of sightings in the Highfields area, to confirm once and for-all if the local species of Long-Billed Corella's were "ridgy-didge" and not cross hybrids as some suspected.  Since this research has begun, the Long-Billed Corella has been added to the local area bird list by the Toowoomba Bird Observers Club.

Long-billed Corella (Cacatua tenuirostris)

Looking back on our own records, 3 Long-Billed Corellas were witnessed within the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reseve at 5.30pm on the 19th of September 2006, resulting in  rare bird report being submitted for this sighting to the Toowoomba Bird Observers Club.  (See past photographs from December 2011 and our own personal sightings of the Long-Billed Corella in the Highfields area here.)

The preferred habitat of the Long-Billed Corella is grassy woodlands and grasslands, and including parks in urban areas.  Nests are made in the hollows of large old eucalyptus trees and eggs are laid on a lining of decaying wood. Long-billed Corellas form monogamous pairs and both parents prepare the nest, incubate the eggs and feed the young.

With thanks to Mick Atzeni from the Toowoomba Bird Observers Club for supplying the historical information for this blog post.


(INFORMATON SOURCES:  Mick Atzeni - Toowoomba Bird Observers Club,, )

Long-billed Corella (Cacatua tenuirostris)

Joining with Wild Bird Wednesday - 9th July 2014.