Song Thrushes in Aus

To: Phil Hansbro <>
Subject: Song Thrushes in Aus
From: Lawrie Conole <>
Date: Fri, 16 Sep 2005 14:20:24 +1000
Phil Hansbro wrote:
Does anyone know what the population estimates of Song Thrushes in Australia are?

Hi Phil

I for one would be interested to hear what exactly you are swabbing Blackbirds and Song Thrush for!

To the question ...

The Song Thrush is pretty much restricted in mainland Australia to the greater Melbourne and Geelong area in south-central Victoria.  At very much lower density they dribble out into the Otway Ranges to the west and on to the Gippsland Plain in the east.  Records from these peripheral areas are few (and probably contain some errors for Bassian Thrush??), and extend very little if at all to the north.  Within the core territory in the suburbs of Melbourne and Geelong, the Song Thrush is abundant - at some locations more so than the Blackbird. 

I don't know of any population estimates for the Song Thrush in Australia, but my "back of the envelope" calculation suggests it must be somewhere in the vicinity of 250,000 - 500,000 birds; based on about 2-5 birds per hectare and there being about 130,000ha of suitable habitat in the Melbourne-Geelong area.

How soon are Song Thrushes going to expand into the countryside like they've done elsewhere (NZ, etc.)?  They've been here a while without much noticeable expansion on a grand scale; but they are colonising lots of the newer suburban areas as well as holding on in the established suburbs.


Lawrie Conole GradCertOrnith MEIANZ
Principal Zoologist

Ecology Australia Pty. Ltd.
Flora and Fauna Consultants
88B Station Street
FAIRFIELD VIC 3078 Australia
E-mail: lconole [at]
Ph: (03) 9489 4191; Mob: (0419) 588 993
Fax: (03) 9481 7679
ABN 83 006 757 142

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