birding-aus Talon snatching by raptor

To: Birding-aus <>
Subject: birding-aus Talon snatching by raptor
From: Jill Dening <>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 1999 07:23:50 +1100
Hi all,

This one will be of particular interest to Bob Forsyth in Mt Isa, following
on from a conversation this week.

Yesterday I was wader and tern watching at Caloundra, SEQ, and watched with
interest as two terns made repeated lunges at an adult White-bellied
Sea-Eagle (WBSE) as they saw it off their patch.

About ten minutes later a complete stranger approached us, as often happens
- attracted (not by the stunning appeal of two girls in their fifties, but)
by the telescopes.

The stranger said that about a fortnight ago he and friends had watched a
WBSE cruising above the Passage being pursued by a small bird. The WBSE had
"rolled over" and grabbed the small bird in its talons. Feathers flew
everywhere, and the WBSE had flown off towards Bribie Island with its prey
in its talons.

I had mentioned to Bob Forsyth that I had observed (some time ago now) what
appeared to be courtship display between two WBSEs at rather a low level
above the water and mangroves. Maybe twenty metres. At one point the
raptors "rolled over", appeared to lock feet briefly, before continuing the
display. There was no exchange of food, and I believe there was no
aggression involved.



Jill Dening
Sunshine Coast, Qld

26º 51'         152º 56'

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