White-necked Heron

To: <>
Subject: White-necked Heron
From: "Geoffrey Dabb" <>
Date: Wed, 13 Jan 2010 11:41:06 +1100

The odd one is being reported around about, but it seems well down in numbers compared to a few years ago when they nested at the big dam at Mulligans.  It was one of the most pronounced decliners in the last BA atlas.  Non-breeding adults have the pronounced large spots down the throat.  I notice that HANZAB expresses some uncertainty over whether non-breeders retain the brownish-red shoulder patch.  On the evidence of the below bird (not a local one) it seems some do, although it is worth keeping an eye out for.  HANZAB describes that colour as ‘maroon’, a word most Australians pronounce ‘MARRONE’ as distinct from being stranded on a desolate island.  That pronunciation has some justification as the word comes from the French ‘marron’ for ‘chestnut’, a rather different colour.  It all comes together when HANZAB notes ‘most scapulars ... maroon when fresh, slightly more chestnut when worn’.



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