I've had a call from Dorothy Pashniak, who has been at Inskip Point
today (mainland opposite southern
tip of Fraser Island) and have seen her pics of thousands of terns on
the sand island inside the point at low tide today. A few people have
asked me what's happening in the tern world here, so perhaps if you can
get to Inskip, you might see some good tern sights. From the pics, I
can see mainly Common Terns, and some Littles. I hesitate to give a
number, but there are several thousand. If there are thousands on the
spit during the day, there will be far more than that coming in to
roost this evening. Can't guarantee that they'll be there in the
future, as they are probably on their way south. But there must be food
there right now, if so many are there.
Additionally, a couple of weeks ago we had about 1500 Little Terns in
Maroochydore during a neap phase daytime high tide. Then a week later
on the new moon flood tide, we saw several hundred.
In Noosa last week we had about 2000 Common Terns for the evening
count, but only around 500 during the day on the sandbanks. These birds
are unpredictable in their occurrences. And to get the big numbers you
have to stick it out until last light.
Unfortunately Inskip Point is a dreadful site to count, with the
setting sun blinding the sandbank where the terns often choose to
roost. But if you go there, please do get back to me, and please try to
give me some measure of abundance. You won't need a scope, just binos.
(You need a scope to ID the shorebirds.) If you wonder how many there
are, you can just go into a blind panic, but if you work out how many
is 100, then just keep saying, 100, 200....., it becomes doable.
Inskip Point is a very important site for migrating shorebirds and
terns. Dorothy said there are Sanderling and Ruddy Turnstone among the
Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia
26° 51' 41"S 152° 56' 00"E
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