two that got away

Subject: two that got away
From: Rod Gardner <>
Date: Wed, 8 Nov 2000 09:31:50 +1000
Hi birders,

Oh, frustration. This morning during a seawatch at Maroubra, Sydney,
(sitting in my sunroom soon after dawn) I got onto a big dark skua,
either a Brown or a South Polar. The light was pretty poor, looking
east, but it appeared to have a very pale body, contrasting with
dark wings, suggesting South Polar. It then landed on the water,
and despite looking at the spot for several minutes, I lost it.
Even a Brown would be a good record this late in the year.
But that's not all. Whilst watching the skua, a large shearwater
passed by, darkish above, white below, but I refused to let my
eyes be diverted from a potential lifer, the  SPS. It was probably a
Buller's Shearwater, but may have been something else (I can
think of five other possibilities).
You watch for hours and hours and just see Short-tails streaming
south in their thousands, (looking very healthy and fit) and other
common birds, and then two good, possibly mega, birds appear at
the same time. And both get away. Oh well.

Rod Gardner

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