fruit doves (and others) in Victoria

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Subject: fruit doves (and others) in Victoria
From: "Peter Menkhorst" <>
Date: Sun, 27 Jun 2010 14:25:44 +1000
Paul Dodd asked for clarification of records of fruit doves in Victoria, 
referring in particular to statements in 2 field guides including Pizzey & 
Knight 7th ed.

Most of his questions are briefly answered in Emison et al. 1987 The Atlas of 
Victorian Birds published jointly by the Dept of Conservation Forests and Lands 
and RAOU. This is an indispensible reference for Victorian birders but is long 
out of print - search for it in 2nd hand bookshops.

Fruit-doves have a habit of dispersing widely and can turn up unexpectedly and 
far from their usual range. They have colonised almost all of the pacific 
Islands via a capacity for long distance dispersal and were classified as 
'super tramps' by Jared Diamond in his classic work on the biogeography of the 
Melanesian islands. Hence, one should not be surprised by records of 
fruit-doves in odd places.

Victorian records
Superb Fruit-Dove - one bird near Raglan 4 May 1930 (Emu 30:130), another at 
Hawthorn on 6 Sept 1984 (Bird Observer 635: 125). These two records are the 
basis for the P&K statement of 'casual to c. and w. Vic., which I stand by.

Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove - 2 museum specimens from Victoria, from Mallacoota in 
Aug 1917 (Emu 17: 107) and Seaspray in June 1978. Plus at least 2 previous 
sight records - at Stuart Mill in 1930 (Emu 30: 130) and one at Hattah-Kulkyne 
NP in 1966 (Bird Observer 524: 50). Remarkably, the only records of the 
Bar-shouldered Dove in Victoria (I think) also come from Hattah-Kulkyne NP! 
This species would be my tip for the next pigeon to be added to the north-east 
Victorian or Mallacoota area lists.

there are no records of Wompoo Fruit-Dove from Victoria.

Brown Cuckoo-Dove has been recorded several times in the Mallacoota area, 
including in August 1976 (Aust Bird Watcher 7: 24).

Emerald Dove - several records, most from east of Melbourne, e.g. Lakes 
Entrance in March 1983 (Bird Observer 643: 75-76).


Peter Menkhorst

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