How to see a night parrot

Subject: How to see a night parrot
From: John Penhallurick <>
Date: Sun, 16 Aug 1998 15:24:37 +1000
The late lamented John MacKean had the most logical-sounding theory I've yet
heard.  The bird appears to be nomadic and a seed-eater.  The most
predictable conditions for expecting the bird to be in the area is during a
long drought in Australia south of the tropic, but with a reasonable monsoon
in the North.  This should produce a good seed crop in the Northern Tanami
desert.  Being seed-eaters the birds must drink every night.  Some of you
may remember a TV series with Harry I-forget-his-last-name who went up to
the Kimberley's during a bad drought (it may have been 82-83) and put
mistnets around the only pool of water in a wide area.  Unfortunately, it
poured with rain during the day, ruining poor Harry's plan.

Anyway, back to the northern Tanami: the idea would be to visit the
southern-most station on the Northern Tanami, and camp on a different
waterhole every night.  Eventually, the parrots should come in !

Of course, this requires not only the right conditions, but also lots of
time, and I don't see myself as having this time until I retire, which I am
planning to do in 2008.

Of course, if money were no object, I would commission John Young in Ingham
to find a nest for me.  Alas, I am not in that happy state, nor do I ever
expect to be.

I live in hope!

John Penhallurick
Associate Professor John M. Penhallurick<>
Canberra, Australia
Phone BH( 61 2) 6201 2346   AH (61 2) 62585428
FAX (61 2) 6258 0426
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                University of Canberra,A.C.T.2601, AUSTRALIA 
OR            PO Box 3469, BMDC, BELCONNEN, ACT 2617, AUSTRALIA

                "I'd rather be birding!" 
                "Vivat,crescat,floreat Ornithologia" 

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