Meg Forbes is a mum, freelance writer, and photographer living in the Redlands, South of Brisbane.
Published February 20th 2020
Mount Cotton Community Park is already a firm favourite for families living around Brisbane, Redland City, and Logan. However, many people don't realise that there is another side to these beautiful parklands, with many diverse birds calling them home.
Large lakes are situated adjacent to two sides of the carpark so that many waterbirds can be seen almost immediately upon arrival. These include a number of different types of ducks, dusky moorhens, and even pelicans. Keep in mind, if you have children with you who would like to feed the ducks, please always feed them seeds or lettuce rather than bread.
A plumed whistling duck overlooking a lake at Mount Cotton Community Park
Following the path in either direction will take you along either of the two lakes initially, before passing either the dog park or the playground on the way towards a creek. The path will eventually return in a loop. The trees and bushes lining all of the paths are marvellous for smaller birds such as superb fairy-wrens, brown honeyeaters, rainbow bee-eaters, and sacred kingfishers.
A brown honey eater at Mount Cotton Community Park
Most of the birds are fairly accustomed to people. This means that although a telephoto lens is recommended, they will often hop around in the branches or even on the grass surprisingly close to where families are playing.
One side of the park is lined with homes, some of which have fruit planted along their fence lines. Given half a chance the naughty cockatoos will fly down around sunset to raid the fruit trees and vines providing more delightful subject matter.
A pair of cockatoos helping themselves to fruit at Mount Cotton Community Park
Although bird photography generally has the reputation of needing long telephoto lenses and quiet environments, the many wild birds who have adapted to life in Mount Cotton Community Park provide opportunities that can make it feel like child's play.