Lesser Yellowlegs near Fraser Island?

To: "" <>
Subject: Lesser Yellowlegs near Fraser Island?
From: Tom Tarrant <>
Date: Sat, 27 Sep 2003 04:54:53 +1000
Just received this from Graham Palmer of Jimboomba, SE Qld who has just returned from a short-break to Fraser Island, Qld. He has travelled extensively, particularly in North & South America where he would be familiar with this species. If anyone is planning to be in the area, please watch out for this bird. Please reply to Graham (or the list )

Tom Tarrant

Hi Tom
This is a brief description of what I saw. Unfortunately the bird did not hang about for long. We were driving south on Fraser Island ocean beach at approx 10:15 AM on Monday the 22nd of Sep. We logged the position at approx. 1.8k's north of Happy Valley. Later GPS sightings were taken as 25 degrees 19 minutes 55 seconds South. 153 degrees 12 minutes 56 seconds East. Checking out birds as we drove south at approx. 30 to 40 kph a pair of waders were seen close together by the wave edge. The larger bird of the two was definitely different to anything seen previously on the beach. This persuaded me to stop and back up, noticing with my naked eye (I was driving) that the smaller bird was a Red capped Plover and the larger a Tringa species. On reflection the larger of the two was approx. one and a half times the size of the Red-capped Plover. My initial thought before using bins was Redshank. This idea was quickly dispelled by both my friend, over on holiday from UK, and myself after looking through binoculars. The most obvious feature of the bird was it's brilliant yellow legs. Other ID marks observed in the short time available were: The slim shape of the bird typical of Tringa sandpipers.
            The reasonably long straight bill.
The overall dark almost black plumage on mantle, scapulars, head, neck, breast with white spotting. The call made by the bird, identical to how it is described in Morcombe. The bird was first observed for about 20 seconds before it flew and landed again within 20 metres. The bird was observed again from a distance of about 10 metres for about one minute before unfortunately the bird flew directly west over the dunes without any indication it was going to return. The above information was sufficient to enable me to identify a Lesser Yellowlegs in breeding plumage. Subsequent visits to the beach on the following two consecutive days proved fruitless, leading me to think the bird had not long arrived from the Americas, only resting long enough to replenish its strength before continuing its journey for more suitable habitat. This is purely information supplied based on what I saw. At this point in time no attempt has been made to justify why other species were not considered. This info is purely to enable other birders to be aware and on the look out for this bird which could turn up on the west coast of Fraser or any suitable habitat on the corresponding Queensland coast.


Tom & Marie Tarrant
Samsonvale, Queensland 4520

URL: *********************************************************

Birding-Aus is on the Web at
To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send the message
"unsubscribe birding-aus" (no quotes, no Subject line)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>
  • Lesser Yellowlegs near Fraser Island?, Tom Tarrant <=

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU