Christmas Island Trip Report (long)

To: "Birding Aus" <>
Subject: Christmas Island Trip Report (long)
From: "Gil Langfield" <>
Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2004 11:18:33 +1100
Mark Carter and his team left Christmas Island on 29 November, the day that
the B Team arrived.  The Coates Wildlife Tour to Christmas Island had 7
participants and 2 guides, Rick Curtis and Steve Dale.  We also had fine
weather with rain showers at times which were not heavy or prolonged enough
to encourage the red crabs to move in huge numbers but we were able to see
some of the migration nevertheless.

Since this is a birding group and since I was mainly interested in the
birds, I will not discuss the other aspects of the tour.  If you are
interested in such aspects, please E-mail me.

Red-tailed Tropicbird: seen occasionally, usually near Rocky Point or Rumah

White-tailed Tropicbird: seen every day, mostly the beautiful golden form.
The bird of the trip.

Abbott's Booby:  seen along Murray Rd, when you looked for them.

Red-footed and Brown Booby:  very common.

Christmas, Great & Lesser Frigatebird:  juveniles seen mostly.  Christmas
and Great were common, seen every day.  If you spent lots of time looking,
you could eventually find an adult Lesser.

Intermediate Egret:  one seen on the Golf Course.

White-faced Heron: seen occasionally near the Garbage Dump and airport.

Eastern Reef Egret:  seen along the coast, mostly grey form.

Striated Heron:  one seen at Waterfall Beach.  Same bird (?) seen at Lily

Brown Goshawk:  seen on three occasions, plantation, N-S road and near
Martin Point.  Very friendly.

Nankeen Kestrel:  common.

Red Junglefowl:  common.

White-breasted Waterhen:  seen near the Garbage Dump and Golf Course/Resort

Pacific Golden Plover:  6-8 seen on the headland above Lily Beach.

Common Greenshank:  one seen at Waterfall Beach.

Common Sandpiper:  seen at Flying Fish Cove and the beaches on the east

Common Noddy:  common, especially around the port.

Emerald Dove:  relatively common.

Christmas Island Imperial-pigeon:  very common all over the island.

Common Koel: male and female seen near the Parks Australia office on 29
November.  Refer to Mike Carter's posting to Birding Aus of 8 December.

Christmas Island Hawk-owl: pair seen in a Poinciana tree, just north of the
Golf Clubhouse on 3 Dec at 9 PM.  Heard also at Grant's Well.

Glossy Swiftlet:  abundant.

Sacred Kingfisher:  very blue and white individual seen at the Chinese

Tree Martin:  one seen at the Garbage Dump on 2 days only.

Yellow Wagtail:  one seen in company with Grey Wagtails near the Plantation.

Grey Wagtail:  about 6 seen near the Plantation.

Island Thrush:  very common and confiding.

Christmas Island White-eye:  very common.

Tree Sparrow:  seen at Poon Saan and near Rocky Point.

Java Sparrow:  flock of about 30 seen flying near Rocky Point on a couple of

On the return flight to Perth, I jumped off the 'plane at Cocos Island and
rushed to the north near the runway to look for Green Jungle Fowl which
others had reported there.  I saw a hen and chick (no rooster), but Darryel
Binns from the tour, who stayed on Cocos for 3 days reported that he saw
both Red and Green Junglefowl there.  I also saw an immature Night Heron on
Cocos which from HANZAB, I take to be Nankeen.


Gil Langfield
Melbourne, Australia

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