rufous fantails and bats

To: "Victoria Quinton" <>, <>
Subject: rufous fantails and bats
From: "Mike Carter" <>
Date: Mon, 31 Dec 2007 19:12:30 +1100
On Monday 31 December,

"Victoria Quinton" <>
To: <>

said and asked

I was recently on the Mornington Peninsula, for the first time in a while, and was delighted to find a rufous fantail nest. There was a pair of adult rufous fantails and they were taking turns [the few times I saw them] sitting on the nest. I did not wish to disturb them, and could not see young, so I presume there were eggs in the nest.

 Is this later than usual for them to nest and breed?

Certainly not; that would be normal. Peak nesting in Victoria is in December and January with February not far behind. See 'Atlas of Victorian Birds'. That shouldn't be too surprising. As reported on BIRDING-AUS in the second week of October we found Rufous Fantails 'swarming' across Torres Strait returning to Australia from there winter sojourn in New Guinea. It would then take them some time to reach southern Victoria and the Mornington Peninsula before they had time to think about breeding. Off-line, I'd be interested to know the rough location. At least one pair usually breed in Mt Eliza where I live.

Subject the Second: bats..

If around 70 small bats [allow margin for error as they were flying in daytime] suddenly move to a house, appear one day, from where are they most likely to have come?

In my experience bats are not common on the Peninsula so I'd also be keen to learn that site. It would seem that a roost site had been disturbed if not destroyed. Alarming!

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


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