Return to Albert Park Lake - and Common Sandpiper update

To: "Birding-Aus Messages" <>
Subject: Return to Albert Park Lake - and Common Sandpiper update
From: "Hugo Phillipps" <>
Date: Fri, 30 Jan 2004 23:12:08 +1100
Hi everybody -

I just made a return visit to Albert Park Lake (c.3km south of Melbourne
CBD, Vic) for the first time for a year or so (having conducted near-weekly
surveys of wetland birds there between 1985 and 2001) while staying in
Melbourne (overlooking the Lake) last Wednesday night.  I did a couple more
surveys (4.5 km lake circuits) on Wednesday evening and Thursday morning and
saw a few birds I had never (or rarely) seen before there.  The water level
in the lake is well down, with exposed muddy margins to the islands and
along the edges of the silt retention ponds.  Work on installing Grand Prix
infrastructure is also happening.  As usual (for the time of year) there
were plenty of the following:

Little Pied Cormorant - c.70
Little Black Cormorant - c.20
Black Swan - c.300 (breeding)
Pacific Black Duck - c.50 (breeding)
Hardhead - c.20
Domestic ducks - minimum of 14 (presumably dumped)
Eurasian Coot - c.500
Dusky Moorhen - c.40 (breeding)
Masked Lapwing - c.10
Silver Gull - c.600

Also singles or small numbers of:

White-faced Heron
Royal Spoobill
Australian White Ibis
Australian Pelican
Purple Swamphen (breeding)
Clamorous Reed Warbler

as well as a couple of Rakali (Hydromys) foraging in the water by the pier
near the restaurant at the north end.

While new for me at the site were singles of:

Whiskered Tern
Black-fronted Dotterel
Common Sandpiper

These last two were seen together at about 5:30 pm on 28 Jan, the CoSa
apparently following the BfDo along the exposed mud at the northernmost
sediment control pond (I have only just seen the Birdline report on the
Common Sandpiper from 6 Jan by Alan Flack and 9 Jan by Greg Oakley and it
seems it was the same place).  They were not seen the following morning.


Hugo Phillipps
Queenscliff, Vic

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