RE: Spotless (and other) Crakes

Subject: RE: Spotless (and other) Crakes
Date: Tue, 8 Apr 1997 18:05:47 +0800
Russell Woodford asked about sightings of several Spotless Crakes, and
interactions between them.

Spotless Crakes are very common around Perth in the summer as wetlands dry
out.  If you find one, then you normally find several.

In early March I saw 9 Spotless Crakes simultaneously at Kogalup Swamp in
the southern suburbs of Perth.  There was very little interaction between
them, and they were generally at least 4 metres apart.  They were in two
separate areas of reeds/mud, with 5 birds and 4 birds.  A couple of times
one would very briefly 'chase' another.

It is common to see up to 8 Spotless Crakes at the south west corner of Lake
Monger near the centre of Perth.

Thompson's Lake and Lake Forrestdale have very extensive reed beds and up to
30 Spotless Crakes have been reported in some years.

Baillon's and Australian Spotted Crakes are far less common in the south
west.  Personally, I have only seen individual Baillon's Crakes at three
sites, and two Australian Spotted Crakes at one site (Lake Forrestdale).

I have seen 8 Australian Spotted Crakes on an ephemeral waterhole near
Carnarvon in February 1996, but they were fairly well separated and there
was no interaction.  I have seen 5 Australian Spotted Crakes at the Derby
sewage overflow but I can't recall any interaction.

I have seen up to 6 Baillon's Crakes on wetlands in Broome and at the Argyle
Diamond Mine in the east Kimberley.  I don't recall any interaction between

I have seen all three species together on a small wetland associated with an
artesian bore along the Oodnadatta track in South Australia, but I don't
remember any interaction.

At the Edward River Crocodile farm just south of Cairns, I have seen 20+
White-browed and 5+ Baillon's Crakes.  I remember some of them being within
1 metre of each other, but I don't recall any signs of aggression, etc.

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