VIC Saford Wetlands Red-necked Phalarope

To: "Mike Carter" <>, "BIRDING-AUS" <>
Subject: VIC Saford Wetlands Red-necked Phalarope
From: "michael norris" <>
Date: Mon, 26 Dec 2005 11:51:45 +1100
The phalarope was at the same place this (Monday) morning and seen by at
least 5 people up to 10.30 am.

I've repeated Mike Carter's helpful directions of 21/12 with a couple of
changes below.

Interesting to note the bird has substantial pale buff areas in its
primaries (larger on the right-hand side).  A relic of breeding plumage?

Also Jon Harris and Ray Vassalo noticed that when it was spinning it always
moved anti-clockwise.  Perhaps they go the other way in the northern
hemisphere (because of the sun rather than Coriolis forces!).

Many thanks to Andrew and Dooles for the initial report.

Michael Norris

It was on the east side of the wetland. Access is via Wells Rd from the
north or Austin Rd then Francis St from the south, see MELWAY map 99 G3.

Park at the end of Greaves Avenue or (or walk - or cycle - from Seaford
Station).Then walk some 400 m north along the pedestrian/cycle track to Gate
8 which is a vehicle entrance but mainly hidden behind the bushes. It is
labelled and has come off its bottom hinge. Step over, or crawl under, the
padlocked chain to enter. The wader habitat, with Black-winged Stilts and
Sharp-tailed Sandpipers, is 150 m directly ahead of you facing west but due
to tall vegetation, may not be visible. The easiest way to the edge of the
water, less spiky juncus, is to move about 40 m N of the gate and follow the
trodden tracks towards two posts near the waters edge about a gate width
apart. Most observers have seen it from near these posts.  Today it was
sometimes 50m north of them and sometimes about 100m south.

Note that Bennett Court and Serjeant Court are nearer gate 8 but have less
parking space than Greave Court.  You have to go south from Serjeant Court
and north from the other two.

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