"Grant Private name" <>, <>
"Micah & Julie Kawalek" <>
Tue, 4 Jul 2006 22:13:45 +1000
To add my thoughts to this subject I would like to share a personal
In 1983 as a 13 year old I received a phone call from a school friend who
knew of my interest in birds and had phoned to tell me that a couple of the
White Ibis that I often spoke about had been found in a field close to his
home but refused to fly instead opting to run away with their necks stooped
close to the ground.
This did not seem quite right to me so I rode down to Blenheim Road in
Newport West a suburb in the inner west of Melbourne which was originally a
part of the vast western volcanic plain and this particular site was still a
Themeda dominated grassland.
After arriving and jumping the bordering side fence I encountered a pair of
Bush Stone Curlews in the leaf and bark litter of a stand of Bushy Sugar
Gums who allowed me to approach them to about a distance of 10 metres.
After watching the pair for some 30 minutes I encroached a little to far as
the pair lifted in flight heading to the western horizon of the Mobil
Refinery in the late afternoon light.
Recognising the import of this sighting I contacted a senior member of a
well recognised organisation to share my thrilling experience only to have
it countered by a stern statement that the species is locally extinct and
given my younger years that I was clearly mistaken.
I did go on to explain that I had recently completed a work experience
program at the Serendip Wildlife Research Station where there was an
established breeding program for this species and that I had become
extremely familiar with the species having to hand feed the birds mice twice
Again my sightings were refuted as impossible.
Can anyone detail the last time this species was observed with any certainty
in the Melbourne area outside of a bird that was shot dead in the late
1960's in the northern part of the You Yangs ranges?
I do appreciate the frustration some 23 years on of being absolutely certain
of ones findings only to have them rendered mistaken due to the opinions of
the birding establishment.
The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering
takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely
a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way.
If you wish to get material removed from the archive or
have other queries about the archive e-mail
Andrew Taylor at this address: