Bribie Island in October 2011

To: Birding Aus <>
Subject: Bribie Island in October 2011
From: Trevor Ford <>
Date: Thu, 03 Nov 2011 00:34:26 +1000
After my last posting on birds seen on Bribie Island I've been asked to do so more regularly, especially with regard to rarities. I will try to do this but I doubt if my brain cells will manage to remind me to do so on a monthly basis. Up front, I should quantify what can be seen on this relatively small sandy island, some 50km north of Brisbane, Qld. As per the stunning new publication, "Bribie Birds", there have been 326 bird species accepted for admittance to the Bribie Island Bird List. Of these, I typically see 120-150 each month, 200 each year and nearly 300 in total. I say this not to brag about my birding skills (!?) but to emphasise how easy it is to see a lot of birds on the island. Bribie's list is not over-populated with vagrants (just a few) but with regularly-seen species. And nearly all of these have occurred in the south of the island where access is easy.

October: I actually recorded 156 species on the island this month, probably because I did two full day's guiding (and a couple of half days) and this acts as an incentive to get out reasonably early and to try and find as many species as possible (the two full days yielded 116 and 120 species). There were certainly another 25 species on the island in October and if it had not been so windy during the last few days of the month I would have made more of an effort to find some of them. Wintering Topknot Pigeons and a White-headed Pigeon were still present in October, being joined by all of the regular summer visitors. Both Spectacled and Black-faced Monarchs, presumably on passage, were seen also. Horsfield's and Little Bronze-Cuckoos were around, both scarce birds on the island, and several White-winged Trillers were seen. Buff-banded Rails have become a common sight but the rarer rails and crakes have yet to perform. All of the regular summer waders have appeared, with Red Knots staying throughout the month - most of them move further south by the end of October - and maximum counts of 647 Eastern Curlews and 11 Black-tailed Godwits. The Broad-billed Sandpiper seen in September was just a one-day job, unfortunately. Seabirds have been scarce, with one or two immature Aus Gannets and a single Wedge-tailed Shearwater seen. I've already mentioned in a previous posting the 85 Aus Darters and 14 Nankeen Night-Herons seen early in the month.

Cheers - Trevor Ford.

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