Birdline Victoria Update - 10 April 2005

To: "Birding Aus" <>
Subject: Birdline Victoria Update - 10 April 2005
From: "Birdline Victoria" <>
Date: Mon, 11 Apr 2005 17:46:27 +1000
Birdline Victoria Update No. 200
For the week ending: 10 April 2005

Mike Carter spent many hours on Monday and Tuesday, and Barry McLean also
searched on Tuesday in north-west Victoria for the Black-necked Stork
without luck. Despite expanding their searches far and wide from the
original sighting location no Storks turned up.

Fork-tailed Swifts are being seen in large flocks across southern Victoria.
In the last weekend Joy Tansey reports them in a flock of around 1500 over
the Werribee Sewage Farm, Peter Fuller has regularly been seeing them over
Leopold in the last couple of weeks, Franks Rheindt saw a flock of
approximately 500 over the Anglesea Heaths and Paul Peake reports at least
1000 over French Island. Suffice to say that here in Canberra I have seen
none and this would, of course, be a new bird for me!


10 April
There were more than 500 Fork-tailed Swifts circling over Torquay (Great
Ocean Road) and smaller scattered groups further west along the Surf Coast
towards Lorne. Also at Anglesea Heath ("The Bald Hills") was pretty windy
and hot, but still yielded a couple of Chestnut-rumped Heathwrens, a Pink
Robin, a Southern Emu-wren, Australian King Parrots, a female Myiagra
(Leaden/Satin, pretty late) and a couple of Little Lorikeets amongst scores
of Purple-crowned's. Thanks Frank Rheindt.

10 April
4-5 King Quail near Long Swamp, French Island. Also at least 1,000
Fork-tailed Swifts (essentially many tens of birds visible in the binoculars
at any one time along a 300 metre wide north-south band extending as far
north and south as the binoculars could see) coming through a few hundred
metres ahead of the (north-south) cloud front at about 2:00 pm near Clump
Lagoon, French Island. Thanks Paul Peake.

10 April
More than 1500 Fork-tailed Swifts were seen over Kirk Point, heading north
and Birdline's first Orange-bellied Parrot for the season was also seen at
the Western Treatment Plant. Thanks Joy Tansey.

10 April
3 Brown Quail on West side of Laverton Creek in grass close to path 100m
from beach 8:30am. Thanks Colin Clark.

9-10 April
2 Cape Barren Geese on the ninth green at Sandhurst Golf Course, Skye.
Thanks Dean Miniken, per Paul Peake.

5 April
There was an adult Pied Butcherbird at Jones Ridge - off the Winnap-Nelson
Road at Drik Drik. A first for the Portland region. Thanks Peter Barrand per
Mike Carter.

5 April
At Yan Yean Reservoir Park there was a late sighting of a Clamorous
Reed-warbler and approximately 4700 Eurasian Coot. Thanks Michael Ramsey.

4 April
There was a White-throated Nightjar at Truganina Swamp, Altona. Seen at dusk
near entrance on Bell Avenue and one Sooty Oystercatcher still at mouth of
Laverton Creek. Thanks Colin Clark.

3 April
50 Fork-tailed Swift flying North against a strong NW wind. No Needletails
at Flanagans Rd, Buninyong. Thanks Graeme Hosken.

3 April
2 Sooty Oystercatchers were at the mouth of Laverton Creek in Altona Melway
(209 C2). Thanks Colin Clark.

3 April
There was a Spotless Crake to the left of the sign at “The Spit” Werribee
Treatment Plant, the tide was almost dead low at the time. John and Sue have
noticed at the Spit that when the tide is three quarters coming in you may
see the Lewin’s Rail, and when the tide is beginning to drop the Australian
Spotted Crake seems to come out, and now of course the Spotless Crake is
seen at the same spot at dead low tide. Thanks John and Sue O’Malley.

2 April
There was a mixed flock of around 8 Fork-tailed Swifts and White-throated
Needletails over Braeside Park (SE Melb) on Saturday morning, and around 6-8
Fork-tails over Yellingbo on Sunday morning. Thanks Dave Torr.

2 April
A total of 500+ Fork-tailed Swifts in 3 locations at Gherang/Modewarre and
Ceres just west of Geelong Sat 2/4 in hot northerly winds. No needletails at
all seen. Thanks John Newman

1 April
7 Fork-tailed Swift were seen at Whittlesea. Thanks Michael Ramsey.

Early April
Small numbers of Fork-tailed Swifts have been seen for the last week or so
over Leopold on the Bellerine Peninsula. Thanks Peter Fuller.

Early April
A field trip for 3rd year La Trobe University students to the mallee last
week turned up some nice sightings. A Spotted Harrier was seen over Meridian
Rd north of Walpeup, as were two flocks (both around 16 birds) of Regent
Parrots and three flocks of Cockatiels (4, 10 and 12 birds). Zebra Finches
were heard over farmland north of Walpeup. A male Gilbert's Whistler was
seen at the flora reserve in Torrita singing his head off, and two more were
sighted at Hattah NP - one on the Nowingi Tk and one on the Konardin Tk. A
group of six Mallee Emu-wrens was also seen on the Nowingi Tk, comprising 2
males and 4 females. Thanks Dean Ingwersen.

Early April
There are currently have two or more Swift Parrots in the area of the Mt
Eliza Business College in Kunyung Road, Mt Eliza. They have been here for
some weeks. Thanks David Ap-Thomas.

Late March
There are reports of a Black-necked Stork from Tungamah which is about 25kms
South West of Yarrawonga. It was on a swamp at the NW corner of the junction
of Wallden Rd & Dickie Rd, (VICROADS Country Directory p 33 F3). This is
private land, a property called Sand Bank. Thanks Bob Cook per Mike Carter.

Late March
Interesting sightings from Annya State Forest in the past fortnight include:
14th March - 1 male Spotted Quail-thrush; 23rd March - pair Spotted
Quail-thrush; 31st March - 2 White-throated Needletails & 30-50 Fork-tailed
Swifts (with about 100 Tree Martins in late afternoon). Thanks Peter Barrand
per Mike Carter.

31 March
5 Cattle Egret, first returns and a Pied Cormorant were seen at Whittlesea.
Thanks Michael Ramsey.

31 March
At Pt Addis near Anglesea saw 10-12 Fork-tailed Swifts flying along coast in
north-east direction, very vocal and in fairly tight formation. Also heard a
Rufous Bristlebird and saw 2 Nankeen Kestrels around cliffs. Thanks Steve

30 March
At the Western Treatment Plant, 7 Common Tern at Kirk Pt, 1 Double-banded
Plover at the Conservation Pond with water in it, 1 Darter flying over near
the Borrow Pits. Thanks Ben Sinclair.

30 March
There was a Little Egret at the big storm water outlet at Melbourne High
school. Thanks Bill Stent per Mike Carter.

29 March
A number of interesting birds were seen during the Birds Australia -
Victoria Easter Campout, based at Ned's Corner in Northern Victoria.
Red-lored Whistler, White-backed Swallow and Orange Chat were recorded at
the Murray-Sunset National Park along the South Settlement Road. Several
large flocks of Banded Lapwing, Inland Dotterel and Chestnut-crowned Babbler
were recorded along Ned's Corner Road, and White-browed Treecreeper was
recorded at Yarrara Bushland Reserve. There were also high numbers of
Striped Honeyeater across Northern Victoria. Thanks Tim Dolby.

29 March
Orange Chat and Rufous Calamanthus were recorded at Lake Tyrrell, near the
town of Salt Lake. Thanks Tim Dolby.

27 March
A group of about 10 Purple-crowned Lorikeets feeding in trees in Coogoorah
Park Anglesea. Thanks Tony Trood.

27 March
Highlights of the monthly Eastern Treatment Plant survey include 2 Cape
Barren Geese, a Buff-banded Rail, 1 Wood Sandpiper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 1
Pectoral Sandpiper, 52 Red-necked Avocet and 11 Double-banded Plover. Thanks
Mike Carter.

25-28 March
Highlights of a trip to Phillip Island were: 2 Cape Barren Geese in a horse
paddock next to Forrest Caves Beach car park; 2 Back-faced Cormorants at the
Nobbies; 15 Cattle Egrets with dairy cows on Pyramid Rock Rd; 2 Bar-tailed
Godwits at Rhyll; 4 Ruddy Turnstone feeding on rocks at western end of Kitty
Miller Bay; 2 Hooded Plover at Forrest Caves Beach and 1 Kelp Gull at the
Nobbies. Thanks Richard Case.

25-27 March
A trip to the Lower Ovens Regional Park in north-eastern Victoria, about
30km north of Wangaratta yielded over 100 species. Highlights include: at
McLaughlins Bend a Barking Owl, 4 Boobook Owl, 6 Pink-eared Duck, a
Fork-tailed Swift with 3 White-throated Needletail, 10 Noisy Friarbird, a
late Olive-backed Oriole and an Azure Kingfisher; at Boorhaman North and at
the Black Swamp, a Black Falcon, 3 Pied Butcherbird, 5 Grey-crowned Babbler,
an Intermediate Egret, 32 White-necked Heron, 65 White-faced Heron, a late
Sacred Kingfisher and a Peregrine Falcon; finally at Lake Mokoan North
another Black Falcon, 15 Zebra Finch, 2 Brown Quail, a White-breasted
Woodswallow, a late Rufous Songlark, a White-breasted Sea-eagle as well as
large numbers of Sulphur-crested Cockatoo (548) and Little Corella (94).
Thanks Michael Ramsey.

25 March
A visit to the Western Treatment Plant produced 2 Black Falcon at the
Paradise Rd ponds. While travelling from Paradise Rd to the Conservation
Ponds there were 20 Black-tailed Godwit on the way and an immature Peregrine
Falcon. From the hide at the mouth of the Little River were 2 Arctic Jaeger
and an immature White-bellied Sea-Eagle. Near Kirk Pt were 2 Singing
Bushlark. Thanks Ben Sinclair.

24 March
Jim Reside found a Pied Heron on McLeod's Morass on about 18 March. It was
still there this morning (24 March). Take the Bairnsdale to Paynesville
road. The morass is on your right as you head south. At the southern end
take a turning to the right marked Girl Guides Tree Plantation. Drive in and
continue 100 m or so until you reach a picnic area marked 'Bartlets'. Bird
is on adjacent section of wetland with White-faced Herons. There may be only
one or two previous Victorian records. Thanks Mike Carter.

23 March
Duck shooting has been banned at Lake Murphy this year due to up to 200
Freckled Ducks that have been seen. Still some shallow water present and
reports from the last few days of a Ruff, a Reeve, 2 Pectoral Sandpipers, 1
Wood Sandpiper and 2 Black-tailed Godwits. And no shooters! Thanks Simon

23 March
There was a single White-throated Needletail flying low over Frankston
South, with no signs of a storm front approaching. Stuart Cooney.

21 March
2 different individuals of Spotless Crake (one non-adult with a light
throat) showed well, one at each of the first two clearly marked wooden
bridges (clockwise) along the Pula Reserve Circuit at the Werribee Open
Range Zoo. Other notable sightings included Buff-banded Rail (4), good views
of three species of lorikeet (Musk, Purple-crowned and 4 Little Lorikeets).
Thanks Frank Rheindt.

20 March
The highlights of the Port Fairy Pelagic trip include 5 Hutton's
Shearwaters, 1 northern Royal Albatross, 1 Shy Albatross race Salvini, 3
Buller's Albatross, an early Great Skua and 1 Pomarine Jaeger. Thanks Mike

19 March
A Regent Honeyeater was seen singing from a lemon-scented gum in Violet
Town. Thanks Barry McLean.

19 March
Seen from the Avalon Air Show were 3 Brolga, flying in a flock at the
southern end of the runway and a Black Kite, soaring over nearby paddocks.
Thanks Michael Ramsey.

19 March
A single Little Egret was seen hunting in a flooded patch of remnant Grey
Box woodland just south east of the derestriction signs on Exford Road,
Melton South. Thanks Micah Kawalek.

18 March
Rob Farnes saw House Swifts, a bird he knows well, (99% certain), three
times at Mt Clay near Heywood. They were with White-tailed Needletails.
Attempts to photograph them failed. At the same site in early April he saw
up to 400 Fork-tailed Swifts, twice as many as his largest previous flock in
the Portland district. Thanks Mike Carter.

18 March
Two adult Peregrine Falcons seen flying around the Melbourne Sports and
Aquatic Centre (near Albert Park Lake) 7.45pm yesterday 17th March. Thanks
Aaron Organ.

18 March
15 Little Egrets seen from an area immediately north of Shell Road, between
the Lonsdale Lakes Development and Clows Lane, Point Lonsdale. Thanks Aaron

16 March
A single adult Great-crested Grebe at Westgate Park (alongside the Westgate
Bridge in Fisherman’s Bend). First seen by George Fotheringham, a volunteer
member of the dedicated “Friends of Westgate Park” who have been steadily
regenerating this attractive and surprisingly productive near-city
wetland/parkland (my list is now 84 species). Thanks Richard Nowotny.

Mid March
From Lake Lorne, Drysdale: Great, Little Pied & Little Black Cormorants are
currently nesting; other breeding species are Darter & Pacific Black Duck
with 11 tiny young (so much for the timing of the duck shooting season!).
The two species of black Cormorants breeding are exceptional records for the
Geelong district. The Freckled & Blue-billed Ducks are still present. Also
observed from Lake Lorne were two Wedge-tailed Eagles circling nearby.
Thanks Gordon McCarthy & Tom Fletcher.

14 March
At Gellibrand Hill (Woodlands Historic Park) there were 250 Fork-tailed
Swifts, 2 Little Eagles, one was dark morph and a Horsfield's Bronze-cuckoo.
Thanks Michael Ramsey.

14 March
At Yuroke (north of Greenvale, near Mickleham) there was a Black Kite,
soaring over paddocks and 5 Fork-tailed Swifts. Thanks Michael Ramsey.

14 March
There were three (but possibly more) White-throated Needletails flying very
low, 5km South of Colac on the road to Gellibrand. Thanks Vin Lam.

14 March
At 9:30 there were 20 Fork-tailed Swifts with about 10 White-throated
Needletails heading north over La Trobe University, Bundoora, Melbourne.
While on Saturday evening at Wilson's Promontory there were over 2000
White-throated Needletails (but no Fork-taileds) foraging low over the main
isthmus (near Cotter's Lake turn-off). A spectacular sight with frequently
fly-bys at head height. Finally, a Rose Robin was seen in the wetter forest
on the Lilly Pilly Gully walk. Thanks Rohan Clarke.

14 March
There was a party of approximately 30 Fork-tailed Swifts over forest at
Lorne at 11 am, there were at least 2 White-throated Needle-tail with them.
Thanks Aidan Sudbury.

13/14 March
On a Birds Australia Survey of Snape Reserve (a Trust for Nature reserve
near the Little Desert, Western Victoria), the following birds were
recorded: Fork-tailed Swift, Painted Honeyeater, Crested Bellbird and
Slender-billed Thornbill. Thanks Tim Dolby.

13 March
The highlights of the Eastern Treatment Plant Boundary Road wetland survey
were 3 Gull-billed Terns presumed to be of the race affinis not previously
recorded in southern Australia and 3 Double-banded Plovers. Thanks Mike

13 March
At the Ovens River in Wangaratta there was an Australian King Parrot and an
Azure Kingfisher. Thanks Michael Ramsey.

12 March
At Chiltern Valley No.2 Dam there was a Musk Duck and 20 Pink-eared Duck.
Thanks Michael Ramsey.

11-16 March
Highlights of the BOCA Camp near Moriac, 30 km SW of Geelong, were Grey
(White) Goshawk, Brolga (8), Spotless Crake, Barking Owl, Southern Boobook,
Powerful Owl (2), Rufous Bristlebird (several) and Rose Robin (female), all
seen within 20 km of camp. Thanks Bill Ramsay.


3 April
Chris and Rosemary Lester found the Pied Heron again at Bairnsdale adjacent
to the picnic area where Jim Reside originally found it. Thanks Mike Carter.

Birdline Victoria is a service for birdwatchers to report and find out about
rare and unusual birds in Victoria and is brought to you by Birds Australia
Victoria. Birdline can be contacted on (03) 9882 2390 or on the Internet at


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