Perth Airport Birding, Kids lists and Northern Pintail

Subject: Perth Airport Birding, Kids lists and Northern Pintail
From: Patrick Scully <>
Date: Tue, 5 Apr 2011 10:36:14 +1000
Hello All,
I followed up Tim Dolby's report and was very keen to see a Tawny-crowned
Honeyeater at Perth Airport. So upon landing, we had a go at finding the
location. Eventually we discovered it was very close to the domestic
terminal. If anyone is interested, after picking up a hire car, head to the
exit and at the roundabout that signposts Perth and International Terminal,
turn left towards International  and Boud Avenue is the first left. We
turned into Boud Avenue and birds were zipping about in the flowering
* *Grevilleas
on each side of the road with a factory warehouse on one side and Post
Office depot on the other. It was a huge thrill to see White-cheeked
Honeyeaters and they looked different to the ones we had seen on Stradbroke
Island last year. The bill and the cheek patch looked different to me. Upon
looking at my old 5th ed of Simpson and Day, I discovered that as with many
other birds there is a WA race of this magnificant bird, and that the
western race has a longer bill. When I checked my new 8th Ed on coming home,
S & D have added that the western race also has a smaller cheek patch. I had
wanted to see this bird in WA and had dipped on other times, so thank you
very much Tim. Singing Honeyeaters were in abunance and Deb saw a Brown
Honeyeater. No luck with the Tawny-crowned and I looked at the bushland
mentioned by Tim as well.

While staying with friends and I was looking after bubs so that Deb could
get a rest, a Singing HE came right onto the table we were sitting at. Bubs
was watching keenly the whole thing and as the Singing HE came right up to
us she flapped her arms with excitement and off it went. A few minutes later
while standing under a tree holding bubs,  a Brown HE came to a branch
around half a meter away. I'm thinking of starting a bird list for her. Do
any other parents of babies do the same?

The unexpected highlight for me was the Northern Pintail. I phoned Sue
Abbotts, thinking of going out with her on an organised trip. Sue mentioned,
had I heard that the Northern Pintail was around, but not having a computer,
I wasn't aware of it. Finding out that it was a female and finding that my S
& D said it was hard to ID, I phoned Sue again. She said that it was quite a
striking bird. I managed to get hold of a computer briefly and wrote down
John Graffs excellent instructions and looked at the video and photos. The
next morning I set off and after several wrong turns I ended up at the park
at the end of Abbotswood Park Way. While standing at the parklike lake,
(which gives no hint of being a stones throw from the magnificant Peel
Inlet) I  got a bit confused so phoned Sue (at around 7am). With her help I
walked to the right and around a sandy track to find the tiny lake and in a
few seconds the Northern Pintail came into sight. It was a unbelievable
"dude" experience of a mega rarity, and one I had thought I'd have no chance
of seeing. So a huge thank you to John Graff for finding the bird and to Sue
Abbotts for giving me a great birding experience.
Happy birding,
Patrick Scully

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