Caloundra Sandbanks, SEQ 10.10.01

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Caloundra Sandbanks, SEQ 10.10.01
From: jilldening <>
Date: Thu, 11 Oct 2001 17:45:25 +1000
Hello everyone,

Below is the list of birds seen yesterday on the Caloundra sandbanks. It's
hell to have to do tern surveys in perfect weather in one of the loveliest
places I know.

Of interest to me were the 6 Bar-tailed Godwit in immature plumage. Six in a
flock of 206 birds.

There was a very young Caspian Tern, bearing the brown flecks and more
orange beak of youth, begging from  an adult in breeding plumage.

About 90% of Crested Terns are now in breeding plumage, and the numbers have
dropped off dramatically since their peak in late winter, as they head for
offshore islands to breed. There are still a few Cresteds with immature
plumage, and I guess I saw about 6 of these yesterday. All begging ceased
long ago.

We always take note when something puts up a flock of birds. We marvel at
the ability of the Whistling Kite to worry a flock of terns and small
waders. And yet the Eastern Curlew and sandplovers so often stand their
ground. Osprey and Brahminy Kite can sometimes pass overhead without any
response from the roosting birds. White-bellied Sea-Eagle usually causes a
stir. Whilst I have seen a sea-eagle take a Little Tern, I have never seen a
Whistling Kite take a wader or tern, or even attempt it. Has anyone ever
seen this?

Another interesting thing: a surfer reported to me this week that a pair of
Sooty Oystercatchers is currently nesting on Mudjimba (Old Woman) Island, at
the mouth of the Maroochy River. He saw a pair nest there last year too.

Tern, Caspian     4
Tern, Common     1
Tern, Crested     958
Tern, Gull-billed    15
Tern, Little     5
Gull, Silver     423
Terns & Gulls, unidentified    30
Curlew, Eastern     30
Whimbrel    3
Godwit, Bar-tailed     206
Knot, Great     4
Sandpiper, Curlew     46
Sandpiper, Terek     2
Stint, Red-necked     9
Tattler, Grey-tailed     27
Plover, Greater Sand     78
Plover, Lesser Sand     11
Plover, Pacific Golden     1
Oystercatcher, Pied     2
Waders, unidentified    50
Pelican, Australian     5
Cormorant, Pied     17
Cormorant, Little Black     14
Whistling Kite    2
Brahminy Kite    1
Osprey    1 
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