Long Reef & Dee Why 27 January

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Long Reef & Dee Why 27 January
From: "Tom and Mandy Wilson" <>
Date: Sun, 27 Jan 2008 10:48:29 +1100
Hi all
after some interesting reports on Eremaea in the week of seabird sightings off Sydney, I thought I'd see what was around this morning. I started at Long Reef, checking the ponds on the golf course (plenty of Coots, Moorhens & Swamphens, but very full, so no mud) and then headed onto the reef itself. The reef had a big flock (100ish) of Red Necked Stints. A couple were starting to colour up, with rust patches on the backs and one bird had a reddish head too. There were about 20 Golden Plover, a similar number of Turnstone, 2 Grey Tailed Tattler and 2 Sooty Oystercatchers

Sea watching was not productive - there were plenty of birds but they were mostly a long way out and even with the scope were little more than black dots. A few Wedge-Tailed Shearwaters came in close, but that was about it. The easterly sun didn't help, but mostly because it was a bit hazy and the bright light was dissipated a fair bit, creating quite a wide "no look" zone for the bins/scope. (I've been to Long Reef before at this time of day and not had a problem, so it does depend on the state of the atmosphere a bit I think.)

Before heading home, I checked out Dee Why lagoon (from the Long Reef Beach car park), which is now blocked to the sea and is full again. It appears that the water is right up to the reeds, with no muddy margins. To get a better look I would have needed to go round to Dee Why proper, and I didn't have time for that. However, as I left there was a large flock of White throated Needletails circling, from not much more than head height to way up. My estimate 250+ birds. No fork-Taileds in there that I could see.

Tom Wilson

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