sight record of Dusky woodswallow near Darwin NT

To: Bas Hensen <>, Birding Aus <>
Subject: sight record of Dusky woodswallow near Darwin NT
From: Denise Goodfellow <>
Date: Mon, 06 Aug 2012 10:37:22 +0930
I recall Martin Schulz saying he'd seen Dusky Woodswallow in the Top End
back in 1990.
Denise Lawungkurr Goodfellow
1/7 Songlark Street,
Bakewell, NT 0832
043 8650 835

PhD candidate, SCU
Vice-chair, Wildlife Tourism Australia
Nominated for the Condé Nast international ecotourism award, 2004 by the
renowned American website, Earthfoot.
Wildlife Adviser, BBC¹s ?Deadly 60¹

Birds of Australia's Top End and Quiet Snake Dreaming available on
A second edition of Fauna of Australia¹s Top End used by the University of
NSW as a text for 12 years is now under preparation.

'It gave me huge insight into the lives' of Aboriginal Australians¹,
 Jonathon Franzen, American author, birder, conservationist (August, 2011)
on Quiet Snake Dreaming.

On 5/8/12 4:03 PM, "Bas Hensen" <> wrote:

> I posted the following observations on ntbirds a few days back and did not
> receive too much of a response. 

Lightly edited copy: "we saw 2 (dusky)
> woodswallows in the company of a large flock of Masked birds. They had very
> contrasting whitish wings and entirely dark blackish body plus tail"....It was
> only when we checked Simpson & Day that we realised we might be onto something
> unusual. We saw the birds once more afterwards and they still looked the same,
> ie. not white-browed, black-faced or little, but looking like dusty!

> appeared to be the same size as the masked, which were flying with them. We
> saw many little woodswallows all day, and minutes after sighting the higher
> flying flock of masked, and these birds were clearly different, with little to
> no contrast between body and wings.
We only saw the birds in flight from
> underneath, so could not see a white streak on the leading edge of the
> wings.
My question is: are there any previous records of Dusky in the NT ?
> Could the somewhat unusual weather pattern with sustained strong SE winds have
> something to do with it?
The  large flock was in exactly the same
> area/airspace as the one observed during the Fieldnats excursion on July 8.
> (namely where the Marakai track crosses the Adelaide river). Hope to hear re
> woodswallows. Does HANZAB have any records ?" Dominic Funnell was the second
> observer.

Considering that :

1. Woodswallows are nomadic

1. Woodswallows
> often form mixed flocks

2. The known ranges of masked and dusky woodswallows
> show considerable overlap.

Should the occasional sighting of dusky
> woodswallow in the Top End be much of a surprise?

Comments please

> Bas Hensen

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