Re: Trip report - Fall's Creek, Victorian Alps, 17-23 Feb 2002

To: "Birding Aus" <>
Subject: Re: Trip report - Fall's Creek, Victorian Alps, 17-23 Feb 2002
From: "Bob Green" <>
Date: Fri, 1 Mar 2002 21:00:18 +1030
Please excuse me as this is my first message so I hope I get this right.
In relation to the whole alpine birds discussion I would like to add a few bits of info.
-------Lawrie Conole wrote: Typical Australian alpine habitats (and to some extent sub-alpine as well) have summer avifaunas of 3-10 species of bird.
I would like to add a short extract REF 1: The number of bird species decreases markedly with increasing altitude. This is reflected in both the total number of species that are known to use the subalpine zone (61) and alpine zone (36) / Five species have been recorded breeding in the alpine zone compared to 23 species in the sub-alpine zone.
-------Harvey Perkins posed four questions relating to birds and food resources: These are best answered in W.S. Osborne and K. Green - Seasonal changes in composition, abundance and foraging behaviour of birds in the Snowy Mountains. Emu Vol 92 Part 2.
-------Carol Probets raised the presence of Brown Thornbills in summer above the winter snow-line.: REF 2: The most common small bird that overwinters in sub-alpine woodland on the mainland is the Brown Thornbill. REF1:Cold can however, be a problem for small birds, and species such as White-browed Scrubwrens and Brown Thornbills may roost beneath the snow at night in order to escape from the low temperatures on cold, clear nights.
One major food item in alpine areas would be the Bogong Moth, also one species that surprised me as an alpine bird is Latham's Snipe which feeds in fens.
There are two comprehensive Snowy Mountains studies published
Gall, B.C. and Longmore, N.W. 1978 Avifauna of the Thedbo Valley, Kosciusko National Park. Emu 78: 189-196
Osborne, W.S. and Green, K. 1992 Seasonal changes in composition,abundance and foraging behaviour of birds in the Snowy Mountains. Emu 92: 93 105
REFERENCE 1: Snow A Natural History; an uncertain Future. (ed. Ken Green) Australian Alps Liaison Committee. Canberra.
REFERENCE 2:Wildlife of the Australian Snow-Country 1994 Ken Green / William Osborne. Reed Books.
I can be contacted at  or those interested in more info could contact Ken Green at
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