To: "Birding-Aus" <>
Subject: Sea-watch
From: "Robert Quinan" <>
Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2003 13:29:11 +1000
Hi all.
Just spent a pleasant hour sea-watching from my usual spot at Soldier's Pt., on the Central Coast of NSW, ~100km north of Sydney.
Nothing exceptional, although the Giant Petrel was nice. What was fun, though, was comparing birds from 3 pairs of very similar species.
There were a few Short-tailed Shearwarters amongst the hundreds of Wedge-tailed SW, and it was interesting to try to find them. (Saw my first STSW on the 28/9)
Also had good views of several Huttons SW, looking much darker above than the Fluttering SW at the moment and quite easy to pick.
Finally, there was a large, mixed flock (~200) of White-fronted and Common Terns present which allowed comparison of these 2 species. (These are my first Common Terns of the season)
It would have been a great exercise for those with less experience in seabird identification, so if you have trouble with the species mentioned you may want to check out what's off shore at the moment to hone your skills.
Birds seen:
A. Gannets
Wedge-tailed SW
Short-tailed SW
Huttons SW
Fluttering SW
Giant Petrel (probably Southern as I couldn't see a dark bill tip)
White-fronted Tern
Common Tern
Crested Tern
Also on the rocks with the Terns were:
Ruddy Turnstone
RN Stints
Curlew Sandpiper
Grey-tailed Tattler
Golden Plover
Sooty Oystercatcher
Finally, stopped off at Karagi Pt., North Entrance, to check out the area where the Little Terns breed and found several Red-capped Plovers, and Masked Lapwings with a nest which had 4 eggs.
Heading back to the car I scanned the gulls on the sand bank across the other side and found two adult Kelp Gulls, very rare birds for the Central Coast.
A most enjoyable morning.
Robert Quinan
Central Coast, NSW, Aust.
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