Some thoughts on the Melbourne Koel

Subject: Some thoughts on the Melbourne Koel
Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2000 11:57:09 +1000

G'day all

East coast folk are no doubt bemused by our southern excitement at a visit from
a Koel.  It seems like such an exotic bird to us.

I suppose the very wet weather in NSW and QLD recently could be an explanation
but I don't think that explains the two birds in Victoria in the summer of
1998-1999.  If you remember, there was one which visited Mildura briefly in
early November, 1998 and then another which turned up in Hamilton on 14th
November 1998.  The Hamilton bird stayed until at least 15th January 1999.  It
occasionally moved around a several km wide range but tended to mostly stay in
the one fairly small area.

The dates of the last Mildura sighting and the first Hamilton sighting mean that
if there was only one bird it would have had to have flown the 400km in (from
memory) 2 days.  Possible but I think unlikely given the un-Koel-like habitat in

So, there may be more than one bird in Melbourne but the distance between the
sightings could probably be covered by one bird.  Whatever, I hope they stay
until Christmas when I will be down.

A question for Koel experts - I only heard the "koel" call from the bird in
Hamilton, never the ''wirra wirra" call.  What are these two calls used for by
the bird?



Steve Clark
45 Carmichael Street, Hamilton, Victoria, 3300

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