Re: FW: [canberrabirds] Fan-tailed Cuckoo in the ANBG

To: Geoffrey Dabb <>
Subject: Re: FW: [canberrabirds] Fan-tailed Cuckoo in the ANBG
From: Robin Hide <>
Date: Thu, 22 Apr 2010 21:50:53 +1000
Many thanks for that v. useful information, Geoffrey - experience and knowledge of calls makes all the difference!  I guess I've been to the ANBG between 10-20 times since spring and I confess its the first FTC I've seen there, but I would'nt have recognised the call in the past.
The COG Atlas description "most..have left the ACT by March, but a few stragglers remain in April" suggested I was seeing something a little unusual.

Geoffrey Dabb wrote:

I suppose I have visited ANBG about 30 or so times since early Spring and I have heard FTCs more often than not.  I would not expect them to call throughout Winter, but it is not all that unusual to hear them in June and July.  Certainly, this is the least migratory of our cuckoos.  Below are the season maps for the species from the BA atlas.


FTC map.jpg  


As the species is rather sluggish and usually calls from the denser veg reporting is usually prompted by the call. This, I think largely explains the Spring map.  The other maps are not all that different from one another.  There would be a bit of altitudinal movement, and no doubt they range around somewhat in search of caterpillar concentrations.  If it were not called a ‘cuckoo’, I wonder if it would not be described as a ‘resident’.  On the other hand, local practice is to require a very slight amount of partial relocation to earn a species the ‘migrant’ label, so perhaps on that basis it is just another one of our many local ‘migrants’.  

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