The sea was very still and the sun shone off the top of every little ripple and threw bars of light up onto the mangrove trees standing in the water. I wish there were a way to capture this with photos but I find it sufficiently challenging to take photos from a kayak - let alone staying steady enough to manage videos!
I turned south around the mangroves which line Mullens creek and saw there were numbers of birds standing on the sand. I saw three Common Greenshank, and three Terek Sandpipers but the rest were Grey-tailed Tattlers. Some of these were still showing the remnants of breeding plumage down the front.
Further to the south I watched a Little Egret chasing small fish through the shallow water and then realized that there was a long line of other birds stretching out along a sandbar. I counted more than 150 birds - mainly Eastern Curlews and Bar-tailed Godwits. (Click on all photos to enlarge them - this one I have left very long to show the numbers of birds.)
I took a number of photos of these birds - hoping that I could maybe do a better count and ID later. The most obvious birds were the Eastern Curlews - unmistakeable with the very long bill!
As I focused on different areas of the birds I realized that there was something else moving around behind the mangroves. It was a Black-necked Stork. (Look very carefully along that long line of birds!) These birds are tall - 112-115cm or well over 4 feet tall. I have not yet been able to get close enough for good photos - and this was the best that I managed this time!
As I tried to get closer the bird flew off - but flew towards me and went quite close overhead. It is quite a thrill to see something this big fly overhead! (Wingspan 200cm! - more than 6 feet!)