BBBQ at Inskip Point and a strange Whimbrel

To: "Birding-Aus" <>
Subject: BBBQ at Inskip Point and a strange Whimbrel
From: "Val Curtis" <>
Date: Thu, 28 Sep 2006 16:33:47 +1000
I finally saw the Black-breasted Button-Quail on my second visit. We were very restricted for time because we were travelling up to the Whitsundays towing a boat so only had a few hours to spare. The first visit on 16th Sept was fruitless, but we managed to squeeze in another vist on the return trip on 27th Sept and slept in the boat in the parking lot and were out looking at 5.45am. I got a bit excited after about 40 minutes but it was a Brown Quail. No black on it anywhere and an even reddish brown all over. But I eventually saw 4 or 5 BBBQ chasing each other through the undergrowth. Didn't have really close views but good enough to be positive. I got the black head on one individual.

The place is at the very end of Inskip Point road where the car ferry comes to take vehicles to Fraser Is. There is a long area of car-parking spaces along the left hand side of the road and a small walking track goes off into the bush from the last parking place. This is where I have been told by two people that they saw the birds within minutes of leaving the car. The bitumen ends here and a sandy track continues to the ferry. I'm sure it is possible to see them easily as there are platelets all along the side of the track, so you just need a bit of luck or persistance.

On the first visit 16th Sept, I had a quick look at the waders on the beach and saw a whimbrel with a dark rump! It was certainly a Whimbrel sp, there were E. Curlews there too so I had a good size comparison. I wasn't close enough to see eyebrow markings but it looked fairly uniformly brown with paler underwings ( I thought it seemed darker than I remember whimbrels in Westerport, Vic but I haven't seen one for a long time). My book mentions the North American subspecies 'hudsonicus'. Have there been any reports of this sub species being seen recently?

My thanks to all the people who sent information re location and sightings.

Val Curtis


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