About 30 years ago I was surprised to observe Blackbirds at Broken Hill. Local
residents told me that there had not been a deliberate introduction, but that
had appeared after a couple of wet years with flooding in the Darling system,
they had also reached Cobar. I do not know if they are still there.
> Blackbirds certainly have the ability to move over large distances. They
> occur on Sub-Antarctic Macquarie Island, where they are self-introduced.
> Interestingly, there are multiple colonization events, with no records for
> numbers of years then clusters of records, with territorial singing and
> suspected breeding followed by a trickle of records for a year or two,
> before they again disappear. The occasional tough winter probably knocks
> them out. While Macquarie is ~1500 km south of Tasmania, Sub-Antarctic
> Campbell Island and Auckland Islands are the nearest stepping stones at 650
> to 700 km distant. Blackbirds are clearly capable of flying quite large
> I've even seen one from a ship. I'd have to dig out my notes for the exact
> details but from memory we were at least one days travel south of Tasmania.
> It was an adult male that flew in from the east, circled the ship twice and
> then continued west. I doubt that it reached Africa!
> Rohan Clarke
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