Star Finch

Subject: Star Finch
From: Pat and Ian May <>
Date: Tue, 07 Nov 2000 21:39:29 +1030
Dear Birders

Concurring with the comments of Frank O'Conner, the Star Finch is one of
the more abundant passerines at Wyndham, although they seem to prefer
only a few spots around the town.   During the period 1993 to 1999,
flocks of from 300 to 500 birds were not uncommon during the wet season,
where they frequented the small Melaleuca swamp immediately north of the
sewerage ponds, east of the sports oval and also the Melaleuca creek
about 150 m west of the BP Service Station beside the walking track
adjacent to the north side of the Great Northern Highway.

The best time to observe them is shortly after daylight or later in the
afternoon when they appear to be more active feeding and can often be
seen perched on the cyclone wire fences and also the overhead power
wires in the area.  The Star Finch is also common between Wyndham and
Parry's Lagoon, frequenting grassy shrublands next to the highway, and
also at many similar areas of habitat around the Kununurra irrigation
area.   However we never observed them in concentrations at other areas
that compared to the flocks of the Wyndham Melaleuca swamps.


Ian May


> The Star Finch is a bird that has intringued me, especially in Western
> Australia.
> It is common to very common in Kununurra / Wyndham in the Kimberley if you
> know where to look.  A pair turned up at the Argyle Diamond Mine (about
> 100km or so from Kununurra) at the start of this year which I have seen 3
> times now in the same site, so they will probably become established.
> The field guides show them distributed quite widely through the Pilbara &
> Gascoyne.  I have seen a flock on the grass lawns of Paraburdoo.  They are
> included in the bird lists for Millstream Chichester NP in the Pilbara, in
> the Shire of Exmouth and in Carnarvon but I have failed to locate them at
> these sites.  I wonder if the birds roam the Pilbara / Gascoyne depending
> on the season / conditions or whether they are separate isolated
> populations?
> Birding-Aus is on the Web at
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