Pheasant Coucal near Newhaven

Subject: Pheasant Coucal near Newhaven
From: Robert Gosford <>
Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2007 05:02:23 +1030
Dear all,

I was camping about 30km north of Newhaven over the weekend and yesterday, 28 January, I heard a Pheasant Coucal, /Centropus phasianinus /calling from about 0630 to 0715 hours. It was in thick scrub along a dry creek line at the bottom of a scree slope and seemed to be moving away from me.

Having lived in the Top End of the NT for some years I am familiar with the Coucal's call and, while I didn't sight the bird/s I am confident that I identified it correctly.

None of the field guides I have to hand show the range of this species being further south than about the Katherine/Mataranka area. The New Atlas has a single, non-breeding Autumn record from Alice Springs, approx. 300 km to the south-east, and three records for all seasons from the Lajamanu area, about 500km to the north-west. I also note that the BA Newhaven Birds List has no entry for the Coucal.

This may be worth pursuing further because it represents a substantial extension of the bird's range - I'll try to get back to have a more extended stay in the area sometime over the next few months. I'd welcome any comments or news of similar sightings from the southern NT.

Cheers and best,

Robert Gosford


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