Australian Hobby circling house in Holt

To: Michael Lenz <>
Subject: Australian Hobby circling house in Holt
From: Paul Fennell <>
Date: Tue, 31 Mar 2020 21:03:39 +0000
My wife and I attended a Brumbies match at Bruce Stadium several years ago. The game was as boring as bat droppings, but our boredom was relieved by the sight of a pair of hobbies chasing bats who were chasing insects attracted by the floodlights.

Sent from my iPad

On 31 Mar 2020, at 3:51 pm, Michael Lenz <> wrote:

On the topic of Hobbies and microbats see also the article by 
Martin Butterfield and Graeme Clifton (2017): Predation of microbats by falcons. Canberra Bird Notes 42(3) 241-244.

Michael Lenz

On Tue, 31 Mar 2020 at 15:03, Lindsay & Diana <> wrote:


before the local government destroyed their habitat in Lyneham, we had a pair of Hobbies who for a couple of years would pursue bats under the street lights until late in the evening.  The lights would attract insects on warm humid evenings which would in turn attract the bats and then up the food chain to the Hobbies.

Lindsay Nothrop

On 31-Mar-20 7:33 AM, John Layton wrote:

Yesterday evening, about 30 minutes before dark, I saw a smallish raptor with a flickering flight mode speeding along our property boundary at less than roof-top height before turning on a course that took it onto the street and out of sight as the alarm call of a Common Blackbird sounded in its wake. I sat on the porch for about three minutes thinking about what I’d seen and concluded it was probably an Australian Hobby. Suddenly, the bird reappeared following the same route as before. I waited a few more minutes and decided to see if it might be perching somewhere on the street between circuits.


I walked onto the nature strip and serendipity! There it was, perched on a street lamp and, as with previous encounters I’ve had with hobbies when perched, this one tolerated a fairly close approach, about 5 metres. I scrutinised it for some 60 seconds before it took off. I then sat on the porch for ten minutes but the hobby came no more. However, I was surprised to see a group of small bats plunging and turning like leaves blown against the sky and, knowing nothing about bats, wondered if it’s usual to see them abroad this time of year. I suppose it’s not unreasonable to assume their presence  might have drawn the hobby to the area.


John Layton



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