Waders at Mount Isa

To: "Messages Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Waders at Mount Isa
From: "Bob Forsyth" <>
Date: Tue, 2 Oct 2001 00:15:18 +1000
 g'day all,     Re the mysterious plover.
Tks for those who have emailed me direct.
On Sat and Sun I took some digital video and some photoshots (stills) of the one bird still present. 
But impossible to get a close up... Had to use up to 100X...any closer with the camera and tripod the bird would flush. And of course the bird would always feed away from me at a slow walk. (Is this another Law of Birding ?)
I've had a quick look at the Sat videos and still not sure...but leaning towards the Grey Plover because of size and the beak. 
A big advantage of the digital record is I can advance it one frame at a time and even at a magnification of 100X  I can make out faint wing markings when it flew... The Google search engine threw up plenty of illustrations but either breeding or non-breeding...nothing in between.
And as in a several days I will be going away to a spot west of Doomadgee for a weeks atlassing it will be a while before I can check out the tapes in detail. 
Very frustrating as I know nothing about the visiting overseas plovers...and worse, these were in eclipse plumage which are not illustrated in my references. I have been ignoring the waders but having got a reasonable grip of the easier birds I said earlier this year I was going to concentrate on waders when they arrived....but why this ?
I suspect the suns reflection from the Tripods legs and the polished exterior of the camera were flushing the bird. I had the same result when trying to get closer to Freckled Ducks near Camooweal (near the NT/Qld border) a year ago.  I have tried painting the legs matt black...but that rubs off when the legs get collapsed.  I am now wrapping a cloth around the camera and have ordered a tripod with a non-reflective surface.  Why do "they" make this sort of gear shiny ? Leica Televid Scopes are an example of a stupid finish. Swarovski and Kowa appear to have non reflective green finish.
Regards, Bob Forsyth, Mount Isa, NW Qld.
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