Black Bittern and Eastern Bristlebirds [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

To: <>
Subject: Black Bittern and Eastern Bristlebirds [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]
From: "Perkins, Harvey" <>
Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2009 11:13:57 +1100
Hi all,

I spent the weekend at my sister's place at Currarong (NSW south coast,
30 km SE of Nowra). While there Karen and I went in to Nowra to try to
find the Black Bittern that had previously been reported on Birding-aus
from Ben's Walk. After about half an hour of searching along the creek I
was lucky enough to see background movement while focused on an Azure
Kingfisher. Almost miraculously, a Black Bittern wandered into focus and
gave excellent, if slightly distant, views as it perched on a muddy log
looking into the shallows. In trying to get a little closer I flushed it
and it flew languidly up and over the footbridge, past Karen (who was
watching from the middle of the bridge) at a distance of about 5 m, and
into the dense cover of a tree about 50 m up from the footbridge. A
great way to see my 561st Australian bird - I even managed to get some
photos although the quality is pretty poor.

Earlier that day, we had also been very lucky to hear, and glimpse, a
pair of Eastern Bristlebirds. These were in the dense heath up behind
Currarong on the Beecroft Peninsula at the northern end of Jervis Bay
(see location marker B on map below, 35.018540 S 150.839539 E according
to Google Maps). They were duetting beautifully, about 2-3 metres into
the dense heath from the track, but allowed only the briefest obscured
glimpse of themselves. These are no doubt birds or their progeny from
the translocation program (see Wingspan, June 2006) but they were
outside the military reserve used for that project.

Harvey Perkins, PhD

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