Malleefowl Bonanza

To: "Birding-Aus" <>
Subject: Malleefowl Bonanza
From: "Philip Jackson" <>
Date: Tue, 26 Feb 2013 20:12:37 +1100
A quick trip north to look for the reported Malleefowl along the 
Ouyen-Patchewollock Rd, was most successful. We saw 35 malleefowl feeding along 
the road between 6:15pm and 6:45pm. The birds were mainly in singles and pairs, 
with one group of three. The next morning we saw 8 Malleefowl along the same 
stretch of road at about 8:30am. I suspect that there would have been more 
birds earlier. To see so many of these enigmatic birds was an exciting and 
highly recommended birding experience. 

I do, however, have some questions. The birds were feeding on what I presume is 
spilt grain along with many Common Bronzewing Pigeons, Mallee Ringnecks and 
Red-rumped Parrots. Is this Malleefowl gathering an annual occurrence which has 
gone unreported in the past or a unique event?  Is this large number of 
Malleefowl the result of a few years successful breeding who are now struggling 
after our current hot dry summer? We saw 35 Malleefowl along a 10km stretch of 
road. This seems to be a high population density. Is this usual or are the 
birds travelling large distances for an 'easy' feed? 

I would be most interested to hear other birders' opinions on what is happening 
here.  When I think of my previous efforts to spot a Malleefowl!

Philip Jackson

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