Recoveries of banded seabirds

Subject: Recoveries of banded seabirds
From: Peter Milburn <>
Date: Tue, 31 Oct 2000 19:53:50 +1100
The anonymous Amytornis has just posted yet another example of a malicious
attempt to undermine serious use of birding-aus for ornithology.  Not only
does the sender fail to provide an identity but also fails to provide any
data to support this latest piece of mischief.  I apologise to all who
prefer to just ignore this type of thing.

In case there is anybody who might take this seriously, I will offer just a
few details from the Southern Oceans Seabird Study Association research
projects in counter argument.  Perhaps other banders might care to offer
some real data to offset the absurd propositon that most banded seabirds
birds die within 48 hours after release, struggling several hundred metres
from the banding site.

At the 5 Islands Nature Resereve offshore from Port Kembla, NSW, SOSSA
studies a number of seabird colonies.

In the case of Wedge-tailed Shearwaters, the huge majority of subsequent
encounters birds with bands are back at the colonies, mainly over a number
of subsequent seasons.  Significant numbers of birds have been recovered
from the Phillipines (which is more than a few hudred metres from Port

White-faced Storm-Petrels return to breed as many as 21 years after banding!

At sea, within 5 nautical miles of the coast, 85% of the Diomedea Albatross
captured were originally banded offshore from the NSW coast.  Some of these
birds were banded originally over 40 years ago!

Various seabirds banded in NSW pelagic waters have been found subsequebtly,
at breeding colonies all around the Souhthern Oceans.  Similarly, we have
identified birds at sea which carry bands placed on them by banders from
other countries.

This information is in the public domain, published by Environment
Australia.  This type of scientific study is rigourously adminstered by the
Federal Government.

In my view, it is not acceptable that requests such as those from Anna
Lashko be greeted with the insinuation that, in essence,  the birds in that
study are being systematically slaughtered!

Insincere platitudes and  preposterous alternative points of view from
ethereal identities are not a sufficient platform for these very serious
assertions, in my opinion.  Where is the evidence to support the Amytornis

Amytornis is welcome to join us on a field trip.  Contact details are
listed below.

Dr.P.J. Milburn
Biomolecular Resource Facility
The Australian National University
GPO Box 334 Canberra ACT 0200  AUSTRALIA
Phone No.  <61> <2> 6249 4326
Fax No.    <61> <2> 6249 4326
E-mail Address  

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