Bustard Island

To: "Birding-aus" <>
Subject: Bustard Island
From: "M&VGardner" <>
Date: Sat, 29 Oct 2005 18:58:00 +0930
I had the opportunity today to visit Bustard Island, a small island off the North-east Coast of Arnhem Land today between Connexion, Winchelsea Islands and Groote Eylandt.  It was named Bustard Island by Matthew Flinders in January 1803 because he obviously saw Bustards on the island (Noske, R., Brennan, G.,(2002) The Birds of Groote Eylandt, NTU Press Darwin).  There were no bustards today, but it's only a really small island but it's easy to see how there would have been bustards. It's sparesly vegetated and mostly grassy because of the shallow stony soils on the island. 
There was little bird life on the island but did manage to find an active Osprey's nest on top of a rocky headland on the island and also a small colony of nesting Black-naped Terns.  Also saw Pied-imperial Pigeons, Brown Honeyeaters, a Pheasant Coucal, Bridled Terns, Crested Terns, Brahminy Kites, a pair of Beach Stone Curlews, light and dark morph Eastern Reef Egrets, Darter and Pied Cormorants.
Back at Alyangula (around the Gemco manganese mine wharf and boat ramp) there were good numbers of Black-naped Terns and Crested Terns.
Last night at the Alyangula Golf Club on Groote we got both Beach and Bush Stone-curlews.  Angurugu football oval (a town to the south of Alyangula on Groote Eylandt) also had a few Little Curlew. 
Numbulwar NT
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