A Raptor moment

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Subject: A Raptor moment
From: "alan morris" <>
Date: Tue, 13 Mar 2007 21:13:29 +1100
Hi Birders,

I was carrying out my regular 2ha 20 minute survey of the Dairy Swamp, Tuggerah (on the NSW Central Coast) about 1130 hrs today, when all the Masked Lapwings and ducks roosting around the edge of the swamp took off. I was certain that it was not me that cause the the birds to depart and so looked around to see what I had missed. A Whistling Kite passed overhead and then I saw a Swamp Harrier, flying low over the end of the swamp. Then there were three Whisting Kites overhead, one started to chase a much larger bird which turned out to be a Wedge-tailed Eagle, which was joined by its mate which flew off the ground.

There were cows with young calves in the paddock and it was possible that one of the small calves had died and the Eagles were attracted to the carcase. The Whistling Kites continued to swoop at the Eagles until they glided off. Finally a Hobby flashed over the Swamp and made a half hearted attack at a small group of Starlings. All this took place in a matter of five minutes, and I had seen 7 raptors of 4 species! soon the Masked Lapwings landed back around the edge of the swamp and the ducks returned. Everything was quiet once again!

Wyong and Tuggerah are busy suburbs and are only located 500m either side of the Tuggerah Reserve (Pioneer Dairy) which is located along Wyong Creek. It is good to know that the Wedge-tails can some times come and call on us here!

Alan Morris

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