Last Saturday, 30th September 2006 I had a good day's birding in
Sydney's Eastern Suburbs (approx. 10km south of Sydney CBD).
At Penrhyn Rd, Port Botany, where I met Graham Buchan, we had a good
mixture of shore birds including a Grey Plover, 2 Pacific Golden
Plovers, 3 Red-capped Plovers, 9 Red-necked Stints, 2 Grey-tailed
Tattlers, 1 Red Knot, 20 Bar-tailed Godwits and 2 Pied Stilts.
Both Graham and I also spent some time later that morning at the East
Lakes Golf course where we found 17 Sharp-tailed Sandpipers, 2 Latham
Snipes, 2 Pied Stilts, 2 Tawny Grassbirds, 8 Hardhead, a Plumed Egret, 2
Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoos, a pair of Red-rumped Parrots, 2
Horsfield's Bronze-cuckoos, both Yellow and Yellow-rumped Thornbills
(one of the later was seen carrying nesting material), a few Red-browed
Firetails, several Greenfinches, a few Nutmeg Mannikins and several
Figbirds. I may have also heard a White-winged Triller where up to 3
have been seen there recently by David Mitford.
I also spent most of the afternoon, doing a sea watch at Magic Pt,
Maroubra where I was over-whelmed by the vast numbers of Short-tailed
Shearwaters on their migration south. They were coming past the point at
about 15,000 birds per hours for the 3.5 hours I was there. There was
also a feeding flock of no less than 700 Wedge-tailed Shearwaters with
several hundred Silver Gulls within 20 metres or so from the rocks with
a lot of nice sized fish with them. This feeding frenzy continued for
just about the whole time I was at Magic Pt.
Winds were moderate from the SE and brought in a good mix of both
winter and summer species including 3 species of Albatross, a Giant
Petrel and my first Arctic Jaeger for the season. Two to Three
Humpbacked Whales were also seen heading north (the wrong direction for
this time of year).
Also heard near Magic Pt was one Rufous Whistler.
My list of sea birds and numbers for the 3.5 hours (1:30-5:00 pm
approx.) I was at Magic Pt on Saturday included the following:
Fairy Penguin (at least 2 heard calling)
Black-browed Albatross (3)
Shy Albatross (1)
Wandering Albatross (3) (including one dark juv, bird seen)
Giant Petrel (1)
Wedge-tailed Shearwater (5,000)
Short-tailed Shearwater (50,000)
Fluttering Shearwater (70)
Australasian Gannet (50)
Great Cormorant (2)
Australian Pelican (1-2)
Arctic Jaegar (1) (dark morph)
Silver Gull (1,000)
Crested Tern (50)
Humpbacked Whale (2-3)
I also made another brief visit (10-15 minutes) back at Penrhyn Rd, that
evening where I easily located the Grey Plover again feeding near the
Overall I recorded 87 species yesterday in Sydney's Eastern suburbs
which is a good tally of birds given the proximity to Australia's
busiest and largest city and limited amount of bush land.
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