Early birds in SE Melbourne

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Early birds in SE Melbourne
Date: Sat, 16 Mar 2002 14:40:14 +1100
Two more earliest recorded dates in recent times to add to
the Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater.

4 Red-browed Finch at Table Rock Beaumaris on 9/3 (seen by
Moira Longden moving west)

Blue-winged Parrot at the Royal Avenue reserve Sandringham
today (16/3). I had very good views so could check the
frontal band, pattern of blue from the carpal joint, belly
colour, eye-ring. 

So went home thinking how cool I had been. But then I looked
at the Wingspan articles 4 years ago and all the field
guides and couldn't be sure it was not an Orange-bellied

Eventually it flew and emitted very high pitched tinkling
notes. So it must (??) have been a BWP. 

But why do all the Blue-winged Parrots I see actually look
green whereas in the field guides they are nearly always
brown ? This one even had a slightly blue-green turquoise)
tinge around the face or upper breast.

And why won't people accept that the bright green Neophemas
I saw a few years ago which  "zert" were OBPs ? 

Anyhow this can't have been either species. Perched in Coast
Tea-tree in an urban reserve at the edge of a clearing about
20m wide with the only grasses being some native lilies
surrounded by invading weeds (I had been trying to protect
this patch by pulling off/out boneseed, pampas
lily-of-the-valley, pittosporum when I looked up and spotted
the bird). Blast, another aviary hybrid ?? 

Michael Norris
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