Cape York & Re: Birding Tiwi Islands & Groote Eylandt

Subject: Cape York & Re: Birding Tiwi Islands & Groote Eylandt
From: "Peter Ewin" <>
Date: Thu, 06 Apr 2006 17:34:22 +1000
Thanks to Adrian Boyle, Denise Lawungkurr Goodfellow, Hugo Phillips and particularly Marc Gardner who responded to my request for info on the Tiwi's and Groote Eylandt. As I suspected from the archives, very little known from the former, but Marc supplied some good information on Groote Eylandt. Perhaps the most useful thing to know (also mentioned by others) was:

"If you're serious about bird watching on Groote Eylandt, Richard Noske/Graham Brennan has a book called "The Birds of Groote Eylandt" 2002 by NTU Press -available for $35 from Andrew Isles Bookshop. Certainly worth a read before visiting and full of references that you can follow up. Even goes into details about what birds visit and when, vegetation and heaps more. I wish there were detailed books like this available for other areas of Australia."

So if I do ever get there (just gather info at the moment) I will look into it.

My next request is for some Cape York subspecies. I will preface this by saying I have been to Iron Range 3 times and visited various other parts of the Cape (such as Weipa, Bamaga and Lakefield NP) on some of these trips. These are the taxa I have missed and have very little data from the archives. Ideally I would have attached a spreadsheet, but the following table is in a similar format. Note that my taxonomy and distribution for passerines follows Schodde and Mason 1999 and have added the locations I have found.

Lewin's Honeyeater      Meliphaga lewinii amphochlora   McIlwraith Range
Noisy Miner Manorina melanocephala titaniota Musgrave, Laura, Fairview Station Varied Sittella Daphoenositta chrysoptera striata Artemis (Musgrave), Wenlock River Crossing
Grey Shrike-thrush      Colluricincla harmonica superciliosa    Iron Range?

I am also interested in the northern races of the Large-billed Scrubwren (minimus and dubius - the old Tropical Scrubwren). Iron Range appears to be the overlap for these two taxa, and so I would be interested in knowing where Tropical Scrubwrens have been recorded elsewhere (around Bamaga is listed in the archives).

I guess the other thing is that most people go to Iron Range to see Cape York specialities because of ease of access. Is it possible to gain access to other spots, particularly areas with rainforest (such as Silver Plains and the McIlwraiths).

Once again thanks in advance for any info and if I am able I will pass on any useful info.



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