Caloundra Sandbanks, SEQ, 1.11.01

To: birding-aus <>
Subject: Caloundra Sandbanks, SEQ, 1.11.01
From: jilldening <>
Date: Sun, 04 Nov 2001 21:25:09 +1100
Hi Everyone,

Below is the Caloundra sandbanks haul for last Thursday. I asked for help
about two terns, which respondents agreed were Whiskered Terns. Thanks to
those who shared their experiences with me.

The biggest surprise of the day was a pair of Beach Stone-Curlews, the first
sighting I am aware of in around ten years in Caloundra. They were on the
Bribie Island spit after sunset. I actually forgot to put them on the list.
I monitored a pair there for 18 months around 1990, but they didn't breed,
and then suddenly left.

Of particular interest to me was the flock of Little Terns, our first
sizeable flock of the season. Until then we had had only a handful for a few
weeks. Only one was in breeding plumage, suggesting that it belongs to the
eastern Australian population. The other 205 were in non-breeding plumage,
suggesting that they might be from the northern hemisphere, and I noticed
that quite a number showed no carpal bar. Unfortunately I didn't attempt to
quantify these birds. This is not something I have ever noticed before, and
it has always been burned into my brain that the Little Tern in non-breeding
plumage always has a dark carpal bar. I checked briefly in HANZAB, and think
that they are possibly this year's crop of young coming into first immature
plumage, although I picked up no other signs of juvenile plumage. I need to
spend a bit more time on this. Maybe it has always been a feature of some
individuals and I have never noticed it before. Maybe it's a normal part of
the transition to non-breeding plumage, but surely I would have





Tern, Caspian     2
Tern, Common     19 (one still showing strong remnant breeding plumage)
Tern, Crested     1645
Tern, Gull-billed    2
Tern, Little     206
Tern, White-winged     5
Tern spp    2   (Whiskered)
Gull, Silver     531
Terns, unidentified    15   ( probably either Commons or White-wings)
Curlew, Eastern     16
Whimbrel    27
Godwit, Bar-tailed     146
Knot, Great     7
Sandpiper, Curlew     45
Greenshank    4
Sandpiper, Terek     4
Stint, Red-necked     10
Tattler, Grey-tailed     6
Plover, Greater Sand     33
Plover, Lesser Sand     17
Plover, Red-capped     10
Plover, Pacific Golden     100
Pelican, Australian     8
Cormorant, Little Pied     1
Cormorant, Pied     22
Cormorant, Little Black     12
Egret spp    1
Whistling Kite    1
Brahminy Kite    1
Osprey    2

Jill Dening
Sunshine Coast, Qld
26º 51'  152º 56'
Ph (07) 5494 0994

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