Had a great day's sea-watch from Soldier's Pt.
today (20/7) with the undoubted highlight being a possible juvenile Northern
Royal Albatross. Clearly seen for about one minute in close
(~300-500m). Sighted black leading edge on underwing from carpal joint to
wingtip. Back was white flecked with black or brown and the tail had some
black on it. Upper wings black. Head appeared clean white. Only
concern for a positive ID were two very small pale spots near bases of upper
wings which would tend to indicate a juv. Wandering A. I thought that
the black leading edge on underwing was diagnostic for N. Royal A. but some of
my books show this same feature on the Wandering A. For example, there is
a photo in The Seabirds of Australia volume of the National Photographic Index
of Aust. series showing a Wandering A. with this same feature (see Page
80). Can anyone clear this up for me? If not it will have to stay a
possible sighting only.
Other birds were:
~30-40 each of Black-browed and Yellow-nosed
4-6 Shy Albatross
1 Great Skua
1 unidentified Jaeger (all
Hundreds, perhaps several thousand, Fluttering type
Sheawaters. Try as I might I can't convince myself that I'm seeing any
A dozen or so Prions of unidentified
Gannets, of course.
And interestingly, a Striated Heron flew onto the
With the S-SW winds set to continue it's
worth a look. I'm going out again tomorrow, weather
Bye for now.
Central Coast, NSW,