Sipo still at Pelican Park 21/4/2001

To: "Greg Roberts" <>
Subject: Sipo still at Pelican Park 21/4/2001
From: "Robert Inglis" <>
Date: Tue, 1 May 2001 14:37:19 -0700
Hello Greg, and others,

I first observed Greg's 'feet-less' OZPO at Woody Point, SE Queensland, in March
It appeared to be a mature adult even then so it has survived well enough for
several years now in spite of a very severe handicap.
I have often observed it foraging on the more sandy sections of the local
Perhaps the fact that most of the 'prey' of oystercatchers is in the form of
stationary or slow moving creatures helps in this particular bird's fight for

It is quite interesting and, in some ways, very moving (no pun intended) to
watch this bird
struggling for a 'foot-hold' when perched on rocks in any breeze above a zephyr
Close examination (through a telescope) of the tail feathers shows how these are
being worn away at a greater rate than would be normal for a less handicapped

I have noticed that this bird tends to exist on the outer edge of the general
'flock' of oystercatchers in the area.
It would seem that the supply of 'oystercatcher-food' is plentiful enough in
this area to allow individuals with such seemingly severe handicaps to survive
without too much trouble.
This bird is not being unduly harassed by the 'healthier' specimens but I wonder
if it will ever breed.
I suspect that just staying alive is occupying most of its energy.

Bob Inglis
Woody Point

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