Swamp Harrier at Parkwood

To: Canberra birds <>
Subject: Swamp Harrier at Parkwood
From: John Layton <>
Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2018 01:06:30 +0000

A chilly westerly breeze peppered the windshield with tiny raindrops as I drove along Parkwood Road at 09:30 yesterday, 15 April. There was no traffic about so I was driving slowly and noticed a medium-size raptor flying along two metres above the roadside fence. As the bird approached a corner I accelerated, overtook it, and stopped, anticipating it to turn right and continue along the fence leading away from me. However the serendipitous creature landed on the corner post so it was not 20 metres from where I sat. I rolled the window down and brought the binos to bear. Skies were gloomy but sun was breaking through in the north west creating a bright overcast effect. I won’t reel off all the field marks but could safely bet the ranch my quarry was a Swamp Harrier.


Some 45 seconds later it lofted into the breeze and rose to about 20 metres before banking around and descending to less than three metres quartering diagonally across the paddock. I was a little surprised to see it out hunting during the inclement conditions but there you are.


John Layton




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