Red Wattlebirds [RE: [canberrabirds] ANBG today]

To: "" <>
Subject: Red Wattlebirds [RE: [canberrabirds] ANBG today]
From: Mark Clayton <>
Date: Fri, 21 Feb 2020 03:04:48 +0000

Still common around my place in Kaleen.


On 21/02/2020 11:24 am, Hawkins, Brian wrote:



I’ve been trying to keep an eye/ear out for Red Wattlebirds and have noticed very few lately.


Is this autumn departure from Canberra usual?  Any idea where they go?


Best regards,




From: Martin Butterfield m("","martinflab");"><>
Sent: Monday, 17 February 2020 6:42 PM
To: Michael Lenz m("","michael.lenz.birds");"> <>
Cc: Steve Read m("","steve.read123");"> <>; chatline m("","canberrabirds");"> <>
Subject: Re: [canberrabirds] ANBG today


In recent years one of the exciting sights of Mallacoota has been the daily movement of flocks of 50 -100 Red Wattlebirds along the shores of the Inlet.  This has been recorded in late April - early May.  I doubt if it will occur this year.



On Mon, 17 Feb 2020 at 18:26, Michael Lenz <> wrote:

The Red Wattlebird exodus starts early in drought years (Jan/Feb). Further, the recent hailstorm has stripped many leaves from trees, and with it, no doubt, many food sources for the RW. Hence, the Botanic Gardens will have lost some of their attraction.


To me it is also of interest that another group of birds has recently departed, Welcome Swallow and Martins, only small numbers have stayed. No doubt, other recently flooded areas further N and W from us, may provide more food for them. There were already comments about an abundance of mosquitoes in some of those areas.


Michael Lenz

Michael Lenz



On Sun, 16 Feb 2020 at 17:10, Steve Read <> wrote:

I wandered through the Australian National Botanic Gardens this morning – full bird-list at Small birds (White-browed Scrub-wren &c) were active, but unusually I saw no Red Wattlebirds and only heard a brief call from one. On previous visits of similar length over the last 12 months I have seen or heard 15, 6, 15, 22, 10, 6. 3, 7, 8, 5 and 12.


Have others noticed a marked exodus of Red Wattlebirds from particular areas this summer, or a relative paucity of Red Wattlebirds from the ANBG currently?


The gardens looked better than expected after the hailstorm. I suspect a major clean-up was undertaken. Many of the eucalypt stands had lost much of their canopy, but regeneration had already started. A few trunks in the upper parts of the gardens showed scars from individual hailstones, but this phenomenon was not as marked as higher up Black Mountain.






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