Wandering Tattlers over-wintering in Australia

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Wandering Tattlers over-wintering in Australia
From: "Robert Inglis" <>
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2007 12:18:07 +1000
Judging by the entries in the various reference books I have in my possession, 
information on the
status of Wandering Tattlers in Australia during the Australian winter appears 
to be somewhat
Whereas Grey-tailed Tattlers are widely noted to 'over-winter' in fair numbers 
there is almost no
comment of that happening with Wandering Tattlers.
As far as I can tell, none of the Australian field guides mention 
over-wintering by Wandering
Tattlers and no comment is made for either species in HANZAB.
The first Atlas of Australian Birds mentions that few Wandering Tattlers remain 
over winter whereas
some Grey-tailed tattlers remain during that period. I am not sure what the 
distinction is between
'few' and 'some'. The second Atlas of Australian Birds shows that a report (or 
reports) of Wandering
Tattler/s was recorded in northern New South Wales during the period 15 June to 
15 August.
The Shorebird volume of The National Photographic Index of Australian Wildlife 
states that Wandering
Tattler is recorded in Australia during all months but mainly September to May.
The new Shorebirds of Australia (Geering, Agnew, Harding) does not mention 
aspects of

In our continuing pursuit of more and better photos and more and better 
information on the
identification of Wandering Tattlers Paul Walbridge and I visited Point 
Cartwright on the Sunshine
Coast of South East Queensland during last Sunday, 24 June.
Pt Cartwright is a well know location for Wandering Tattlers during the 
Australian summer and Paul
and I have visited there a number of times over the past couple of years. We 
have observed and
photographed Wandering Tattlers at that location on all of our visits.
Last Sunday, to our surprise, we found and photographed two Wandering Tattlers.
One was a (presumed) second summer plumage bird and the other was an adult in 
partial breeding
Both birds were identified by observing a variety of diagnostic features and 
the flight call.

We have also recorded and photographed Wandering Tattlers a number of times at 
Caloundra Point,
Caloundra, a short distance south of Point Cartwright in SE Qld, during summer 
over the past two
years. We did not find any tattlers of either species during our visit there 
during last Sunday.

We believe that it is probable that the two Wandering tattlers we observed at 
Pt Cartwright are
'stayers' and that, therefore, some Wandering Tattlers do over-winter in SE 
Considering the difficulty inherent in identifying non-breeding plumage 
Wandering Tattlers,
observers should take great care with their identifications of tattlers on 
rocky shorelines
particularly at this time of the year.

Images of the two birds taken by Paul Walbridge can be seen at:


Bob Inglis
Sandstone Point

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