RE: fork-tailed swifts in Kununurra

To: <>
Subject: RE: fork-tailed swifts in Kununurra
From: <>
Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2005 07:46:49 +1000
I'm sure Mike meant to reply to the whole list.

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike Tarburton 
Sent: Sunday, 25 September 2005 3:26 PM
To: Gilfedder, Mat (CLW, Indooroopilly)
Subject: RE: fork-tailed swifts in Kununurra

G'day Mat & other interested b'ausers

I am no Kununurra expert (I have only been there for a few days) but I
do have some data that might bear on the question.

If we restrict your query to just Kununurra then I have only one record"

        Klaus & Brenda Uhlenhut saw one on the same date in 2001, at
Parry's Lagoon, Kununurra

If we look to the wider Kimberlies we find two earlier records: Broome
Bird Observatory (BBO) 12 Sep 2000, 12 birds.  Then in 2003 Adrian Boyle
recorded  a bird at BBO 4 Sept.

If we look at the rest of Australia it can get complicated because how
do we know if the birds involved were new arrivals or overwintering
birds.  There are lots of records but some that might be of interest

1.  An observation in Vic six days later than your observation.
2.  1979 23 August a bird in Tasmania.
3.  1980  a sighting in WA 2 Sept.
4.  1981 sighting in NT 14 Sept.
5.  1981 again  in SA 29 August - just one bird.
6.  1990 Vic 11 Jul 1 bird.
7.  1991  NSW 26 Sept.
8.  1992 NSW  15 Aug 2 bird.
9.           NSW        29 Aug 14 birds
10          NSW  30 Aug 1 bird
11. 1993  NSW  6 birds May, Jun, Jul, Aug, all in NSW
12. 1994 Vic  Jul & Aug 2,9, & 11 birds.
13. 1996  NSW  18 Sept, 2 birds
14. 2000 SA 14 Jun 20+ birds
15.          Vic  5 Jul  1 bird.

So it becomes difficult to know exactly what is happening with real
early dates.

So far sightings in the Timor Sea and reefs out that way by people like
Dom. Serventy (1951), Mc Kean (1979), Andrew (1996), Dion Hobcroft
(1999) and Chris Barnes (2001) have all been of birds flying south low
over the water but during October and November.    This story is for
mature readers only as you have to draw your own conclusion.

Cheers & happy swift watching!!

Oh and many thanks to Mat & Cathy Gilfedder for informing us of this
years early sighting -  I enjoy reading and recording such accounts.

Cheers again

Dr Mike Tarburton
Dean: School of Science and Technology
Pacific Adventist University
PMB, Boroko
Papua New Guinea

> Hello Mike and others,
> Cathy and I saw 4 Fork-tailed Swifts circling above the Lake Kununurra
Golf Course early on Saturday morning (17 September).
> A very nice start to the day.
> Any Kununurra experts got an opinion on whether this is unusually
early in the season?
> Cheers
> Mat
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