I am sorry that Mike Simpson has had a bad experience in reporting rarities,
however that is not everyone's experience. I am sure that Karen and Brett
Davis, when reporting their Grey-headed Lapwing, did not feel that they were
not accepted because they were not part of the "in crowd".
I am a member of the NSW Ornitholigical Records Appraisal Committee. In the
last twelve months we have dealt with records from people who were not
members of mainstream birding groups and their records were accepted. Mind
you a good photograph helps. There were three seperate records of Pied
Imperial Pigeons in that 12 months, one from Millingadi near Bega, one from
Port Macquarie and one from Lord Howe Island, all hardly believable and none
from well knwon birders!! The key issue is to provide a good written
description of the bird so that 7 out of 8 members of the rarities committee
(be it BARC, NSW or some other group), will be convinced that that is what
Too often submissions about rarities give great detail about where the bird
was, what it was doing, the weather, the rainfall pattern, what the observer
had for breakfast etc but fails to provide a convincing written description.
So please don't neglect to advise of unusual or suspected rarity sightings;
make you sure you provide a good written description of the bird seen, and
if necessary, seek help from a committee member in how to prepare the
However those who read such postings should be encouraging and careful in
their reponse to reports that appear to out of area.
For the record, I accepted the report of the Tree Sparrows at Penrith.
NSW Annual Bird Report
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