Re: birding-aus Re: Newcastle

To: <>
Subject: Re: birding-aus Re: Newcastle
From: "Alan Stuart" <>
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 1999 21:45:01 +1100
To add some information to David Geering's comments about the Big Pond on
Kooragang Island:

* It would be slap bang in the centre of the facilities buildings for the
proposed international airport on Kooragang, should this lunatic proposal
go ahead.  Thankfully, it is beginning to look like the proposal (which
would also have destroyed all the rehabilitation efforts on nearby Ash
Island) will be defeated.

* It is a rich habitat for many species of waders and other birds (total
species count is ~100).  The Marsh Sandpiper are regularly present there in
the migration period, as are Curlew Sandpiper, Common Greenshank,
Sharp-tailed Sandpiper and Bar-tailed Godwit.  Several other migratory
waders are less frequently present, with Pectoral Sandpiper the more
interesting of the semi-regulars and Ruff also seen there occasionally. 

* Although the Big Pond is an artificial creation dating from the time of
construction of a coal loading facility on Kooragang, it is the only
remaining wetland of its type in the Hunter River estuary.

* The Big Pond is still threatened - it is on land owned by the NSW Public
Works Dept and they clearly have development plans in mind for it.  For
example, they have repeatedly refused our requests to reconstruct a small
weir that helped to control the water levels in the pond.

Alan Stuart
| From: David Geering <>
| To: 
| Subject: birding-aus Re: Newcastle
| Date: Monday, 29 November 1999 14:26
| John
| My old stomping ground!
| The night-heron roost you mention is a regular site but most people tend
| to see them at the Wetlands Centre where they are much easier.  There was
| once a nesting colony in the mangroves not far away (before Stockton
| was built).
| The site with the Marshies is "The BIG Pond".  If you were impressed with
| this site (and it does have large numbers of waders at times), then be
| concerned as this may well go the way of most other wetlands on the
| and end up a factory site, or similar.  The Hunter Bird Observers Club is
| actively lobbying for a bird friendly outcome here.
| Cheers
| David Geering
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