Spotted Bowerbird in Victoria

To: "Tim Dolby" <>, "Duan Biggs" <>, <>
Subject: Spotted Bowerbird in Victoria
From: "Mike Carter" <>
Date: Sun, 2 Sep 2007 11:49:22 +1000

"Tim Dolby" <> queried "Duan Biggs" <> RE: [Birding-Aus] Trip reports for Australia and New Zealand nowonline, saying

'I'm interested to see that you saw Spotted Bowerbird at the Hattah Campsite. This was probably something else. It would be a very rare bird to see in Victoria - they are probably considered locally extinct (although I'd like to hear any views to the contrary). >From what I can gather the last Spotted Bowerbird population in Victoria were at the Old Kulkyne Station (actually now part the of Hattah-Kulkyne NP), with a pair nesting in the early 1980s. There was also a record from Ned's Corner in 1989. The closest recent records to Hattah in NSW are from Balranald and Kyalite, just north of Swan Hill in Vic, or further up towards Ivanhoe. It is also interesting to see that the Spotted Bowerbird doesn't rate a mentioned in the 'Advisory List of Threatened Vertebrate in Victoria 2007'. Not sure why?
Your bird may have been Apostlebird? Have you got any photos?'

Spotted Bowerbirds are definitely very rare in Victoria. I've never seen one and would try for any reported. Apart from one report from Lindsay Island (probably the 1989 Neds Corner report Tim mentioned above), I've not heard of any other in the last 25-30 years. This is in spite of them persisting for at least some of that period at Euston, NSW, less than 0.5 km from the Victorian border just across the river from Robinvale. I've seen them there and they may still be resident there (anyone know?) and this would be only some 20 km from the Hattah camp ground. Partly because Apostlebirds are rarely solitary that would seem like an unlikely confusion species. Immature Crested Bellbird perhaps? It is not impossible that it was a Spotted Bowerbird but some documentation is required before acceptance.

Mike Carter
30 Canadian Bay Road
Mount Eliza  VIC 3930
Tel  (03) 9787 7136


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