Lord Howe Island

To: "" <>
Subject: Lord Howe Island
From: Jenny Stiles <>
Date: Thu, 22 Oct 2015 03:51:23 +0000
Hi List,
We have recently returned from a weeks holiday at lord Howe Island [4th –10th 
October] and thought others might like to know what to expect at this time of 
the year.

It really is a spectacular place for a holiday with stunning scenery a backdrop 
to every activity. We stayed at Beachcomber & I would recommend it but do be 
aware that it is up on the ridge so a steep end to a bike ride! We managed to 
see most of the likely birds [dipping on Nankeen Kestrel] & saw most of the 
“special” ones [dipping on Black-winged Petrel as we were about a month early]. 
We managed a list of 41 birds.

Tips for Lord Howe.

1. Most visitors get around by bike but your accommodation will pick you up at 
the airport & most restaurants seem to offer a lift back after dinner. There 
are only a few cars available for hire on LHI so if this is important for you 
book early! Wilsons have at least 2 cars and so do Thompsons Store. Joy’s Shop 
had the biggest range of food.

2. We went out on a sightseeing boat trip with Jack Shick [booked several weeks 
in advance] and I would definitely recommend this trip. We circumnavigated the 
island, went past the Admiralty Islands and out to Ball’s Pyramid. The 
spectacular scenery alone is worth the trip but of course there are masses of 
birds! Along with Red-tailed Tropic-birds, Masked Booby, Flesh-footed 
Shearwater, Wedge-tailed Shearwater & Sooty Terns in large numbers we also saw 
hundreds of Grey Ternlets, at least 20 White-bellied Storm-petrels, 1 Kermadec 
Petrel, 1 Providence Petrel, 3 Little Shearwater. The sea was pretty calm the 
day we went out so all my fears of not getting out proved to be groundless!

3. Most of the resident birds can be found easily; The gardens at Beachcomber 
had LH Woodhen, Buff-banded Rail, Common Blackbirds, Golden Whistler & Emerald 
Ground Dove. White Tern are plentiful at Lagoon Beach & Sooty Tern are 
everywhere along the beach or cliff edge. The Airport and little swamp nearby 
are great for waders. One bird we struggled to locate was a Song Thrush before 
finding a single bird at the grassy area near Old Settlement Beach. Pied 
Currawong were only seen a few times & close views only twice [Muttonbird Point 
walk & Clear Place]

4. Marine Tours run a glass bottom boat-trip to North Bay [which is otherwise 
quite a long walk] timing it for low tide. The snorkelling is fabulous at North 
Bay although you can also be dropped off at the beach early. This is the best 
place to see Black Noddy as they nest at the far end of this beach. Lots of 
waders come here to feed at low tide; mostly Bar-tailed Godwit, Ruddy 
Turnstones and Pacific Golden Plover but we also had a Ret Knot. On the return 
trip we saw 6 Green Turtles. 

5. Snorkelling is fabulous at Old Settlement Beach [where from Sept-March Green 
Turtles come right to the edge of the beach on a rising tide], Ned’s beach 
[where the fish can be fed from food purchased from the dispenser at the beach 
or from Thompsons] & at North Bay. 

6. The walk to Muttonbird Point has apparently been “closed” for several years 
due to a small landslide over one section of the path. A sturdy rope has been 
provided to get past this section! The view at the end was magnificent and lots 
of Masked Boobies could be seen flying by or tending their chicks. However, 
looking at a map I would think good views of the colony could be obtained by 
walking to the end of Blinky Beach.

Bird List.
[In order seen]
1. Common Blackbird
2. Welcome Swallow
3. Masked Lapwing
4. Pacific Golden Plover
5. Sacred Kingfisher [common along the fence posts near the airport]
6. Emerald Dove
7. Golden Whistler
8. Buff-banded Rail 
9. Lord Howe Woodhen
10. Silvereye
11. Sooty Tern
12. Common Noddy [Ned’s Beach, North Bay]
13. White Tern [along Lagoon Beach especially]
14. White-faced Heron
15. Common Starling
16. Grey Ternlet [seen in large numbers at Ball’s Pyramid but also several 
roosting in rocks off Searle’s Point]
17. Flesh-footed Shearwater
18. Little Black Cormorant
19. Masked Booby [Muttonbird Point, Pelagic]
20. Magpie Lark
21. Whimbrel
22. Ruddy Turnstone
23. Mallard /Pacific Black-duck hybrids [in the swamp near the airport]
24. Bar-tailed Godwit
25. Purple Swamphen
26. Pied Currawong
27. Red-tailed Tropicbird [Searle’s Point, Pelagic, Malabar Cliffs, Old Gulch]
28. Black Noddy [Ned’s Beach, Pelagic, North Bay]
29. Cattle Egret
30. White-belled Storm Petrel [20-30 out near Ball’s Pyramid]
31. Wedge-tailed Shearwater
32. Providence Petrel [just 1]
33. Kermadec Petrel [dark morph just 1]
34. Great-winged Petrel [1]
35. Little Shearwater [3 halfway back from Ball’s Pyramid]
36. Australasian Gannet [1]
37. Song Thrush [1 on the grassy area at the beginning of Old Settlement Beach. 
We saw it several times but it was fairly flighty]
38. Little Pied Cormorant [1 at North Bay]
39. Red-necked Stint [1 after a windy night in the swamp near the airport]
40. Red Knot [[1 after a windy night in the swamp near the airport & 1 at North 
41. Rock Dove 

Jenny Stiles

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