Crikey, Channel-billed Cuckoos and "the new birding"

To: NT Birds group <>, "Birding-Aus (Forum)" <>, COG list <>
Subject: Crikey, Channel-billed Cuckoos and "the new birding"
From: bob gosford <>
Date: Tue, 12 Jan 2010 10:06:02 +0930
Dear all,

Some of you may know that I present a weekly '*Bird of the Week*' segment on
ABC Alice Springs Local radio 783 with Alice Brennan - we are having a bit
of a break over the Xmas/NY period.

I have written for ** (and  have a Crikey blog - *The Northern
Myth <>* where I've written about birds
& ethnoornithology from time to time) for a few years now and have been
asked to do a regular fortnightly piece for the daily Crikey email piece on,
well birds - focusing on a species at a time.

The first of these - to run on Monday next week - will look at the
Channel-billed Cuckoo, *Scythrops noveahollandiae*. I'm aware of the recent
posts about C-b C's turning up in the outskirts of Melbourne and would
appreciate any updates on whether they've made it into the inner suburbs
yet. I'm also interested in any insights into connections between local
Aboriginal language groups and the Channel-billed Cuckoo - I already have a
substantial amount of information on this issue but welcome your further

I'm also interested in any further anecdotes etc that you may think relevant
- anything at all really - pithy, funny, sad etc etc.

Another thing I am interested in following up on is what can be loosely
described as "new birding" - for many people birders in general birders are
viewed as being not that far from trainspotters - old, boring and with a
tendency to OCD - but my recent feeling is that there is a new cohort of
younger people (in mind and/or body) that have a refreshing approach to

I don't have much more than a feeling about this and would welcome any views
either way - my impressions come from the humour and enthusiasm of people
like Sean Dooley - which is coupled with sufficient birding rigour for them
to be credible - and from conversations with a number of people who talk
about a shared enthusiasm for birding amoung their friends & cohort - but
are largely disconnected from the established institutions of Australian
birding - like BA, Birding-Aus etc.

Hope this stirs a few people into thought & action.

Please feel free to pass this message on or to break this up into its
various component parts for further discussion - and if you want to get back
to me directly my best email is 

Cheers and enjoy - I'm off to chase down those Ground Cuckoo Shrikes just
outside of the Alice again! And to keep an eye and ear out for the two (at
least) C-b C's here in Alice.

Robert Gosford
The Northern Myth blog
Yuendumu, NT
Ph: (+61) 0447024968

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