Broome Bird Observatory

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Broome Bird Observatory
From: "Reg Clark" <>
Date: Wed, 9 May 2001 18:49:12 +1000
Hello all,It has long been my intention to witness one of the sights of the
birding world -- the Autumn exodus of the migratory waders from north-west
Australia to their Summer breeding grounds in Siberia,northern China and
Alaska. The Wader  Workshop run by the Broome Bird  Observatory staff during
the last week of April this year seemed well-timed  for such a visit. .
This Workshop was conducted by the Chief Warden Bill Rutherford and his
versatile assistants Jane and Luke. They were especialy helpful and made my
stay a pleasure. Nothing seemed to be too much trouble for them and under
Bill's leadership they made an excellent team. Flying from Sydney via Perth
I was met at Broome Airport by Jane and driven to the Observatory which was
sited about 12 kms out in the bush on the eastern shore of Roebuck Bay
adjacent to the wader feeding areas These areas are vast and cover about
137,500 acres cosisting of food-- rich mud flats at low tide.
That afternoon while we were checking-out the thousands of miscellaneous
brown and chestnut spotted birds scattered ,feeding, over the flats, Bill
casually remarked "in two days time you will be able to identify these
birds" ----and to my surprise, I was .
Using Bill's step by step methods I was soon sorting out the Knots both
Great and Red (breeding and nonbreeding) , Greytailed Tattlers , Terek
Sandpipers,Asian Dowitchers Blacktailed  and Bartailed Godwits Rednecked
Stints, Greater Sandplovers Whimbrels Eastern Culews, Broadbilled
Sandpipers, Redcapped Plovers, Ruddy Turnstones and Greenshanks and one
solitary Redshank.
Moments to remember-----3000 Whimbrels rising as one, circling the bay and
setting out ,north,thousands of kilometers to first stop China, the receding
calls as the flock climbed into a  pink and gold sunset....... will be hard
to forget.
The Observatory is well positioned to find very interesting land and sea
birds as witness the Lesser Frigate Bird , Brown Booby and Osprey at the
Port, Yellow Wagtails at the Sewage Treatment Works and Redheaded
Honeyeaters in Phil's garden.
During the visit I took the opportunity for a days birding with George Swann
who lives in Broome and conducts tours in the Kimberly region . George is
one of those gifted allrounders and a mine off natural history knowledge .
He produced things like Blackheaded Pythons,Little Bronze Cuckoos , many
Yellow Chats , a body of 15 Blacknecked Storks standing around a small
waterhole looking like a convention of undertakers, an Australian Hobby
making dramatic but unsuccessful attempts to take a Magpie Lark  .A great

In all ,it was a visit to remember.The list of sightings covers both the
Observatory and my day with George.

Plumed Whistling Duck
Radjah Shelduck
Green Pygmy-goose
Pacific Black Duck
Grey Teal
Australasian Grebe
Brown Booby
Little Pied Cormorant
Little Black Cormorant
Great Cormorant
Austrralian Pelican
Lesser Frigatebird
Whitefaced Heron
Little Egret
Eastern Reef Heron
Whitenecked Heron
Pied Heron
Great Egret
Intermediate Egret
Striated Heron
Nankeen Night Heron
Glossy Ibis
Australian White Ibis
Strawnecked Ibis
Royal Spoonbill
Blacknecked Stork
Blackshouldered Kite
Black Kite
Whistling Kite
Brahminy Kite
Whitebellied Sea-Eagle
Swamp Harrier
Brown Goshawk
Collared Sparrowhawk
Brown Falcon
Australian Hobby
Nankeen Kestrel
Purple Swamphen
Blacktailed Godwit
Bartailed Godwit
Eastern Curlew
Common Redshank
Common Greenshank
Terek Sandpiper
Greytailed Tattler
Ruddy Turnstone
Asian Dowitcher
Great Knot
Red Knot
Rednecked Stint
Curlew Sandpiper
Broadbilled Sandpiper
Combcrested Jacana
Pied Oystercatcher
Sooty Oystercatcher
Blackwinged Stilt
Redcapped Plover
Greater Sand Plover
Masked Plover
Silver Gull
Gullbilled Tern
Caspian Tern
Lessercrested Tern
Crested Tern
Common Tern
Whiskered Tern
Feral Pigeon
Crested Pigeon
Peacful Dove
Barshouldered Dove
Little Corella
Sulphurcrested Cockkatoo
Redwinged Parrot
Brush Cuckoo
Shining Bronze Cuckoo
Little Bronze Cuckoo
Pheasant Coucal
Tawny Frogmouth
Bluewinged Kookaburra
Sacred Kingfisher
Rainbow beeeater
Variegated Fairywren
Striated Pardalote
Dusky Gerygone
Mangrove Gerygone
Little Friarbird
Bluefaced Honeyeater
Singing Honeyeater
Whitegaped Honeyeater
Brown Honeyeater
Redheaded Honeyeater
Yellow Chat
Lemonbellied Flycatcher
Greycrowned Babbler
Mangrove Golden Whistler
Rufous Whistler
Whitebreasted Whistler
Grey Shrikethrush
Leaden Flycatcher
Paperbark Flycatcher
Magpie Lark
Mangrove Grey Flycatcher
Northern Fantail
Willie Wagtail
Blackfaced Cuckooshrike
Whitebellied Cuckooshrike
Whitewinged Triller
Blackfaced Woodswallow
Pied Butcherbird
Aust. Magpie
Torresian Crow
Great Bowerbird
Aust Pipit
Yellow Wagtail
Zebra Finch
Doublebarred Finch
Longtailed Finch
Crimson Finch
Mistletoe Bird
Welcome Swallow
Tree Martin
Fairy Martin
Clamorous Reed Warbler
Goldenheaded Cisticola
Yellow Whiteeye

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