North Head Sydney 12 Aug 2012

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: North Head Sydney 12 Aug 2012
From: "Tom and Mandy Wilson" <>
Date: Sun, 12 Aug 2012 12:46:20 +1000
Hi all
I spent about 2 1/2 hours at North Head Sydney this morning, watching birds out to sea in the very blustery conditions. Most birds were working their way southwards against the wind and were quite close in, so good views could be obtained. Sightings included: - Absolute highlight was an almost pure white Southern Giant Petrel. At least 6 other brown individual Giant Petrels seen, but species not known. - A single Bullers Albatross which cruised to the edge of the breaking surf at the foot of the cliffs - quite a few Wandering Albatross with at least 3 individuals (1 Brown, 1 piebald and 1 adult)
- 2 Yellow Nosed Albatross (both heading north)
- Plenty of Shy Albatross, including a gang of 8 loafing on the water eating something. - 2 shearwaters - brown all over, very short at the back end, no pale bill or feet, no white in the wing linings - possibly two very early returning Short Tailed Shearwaters?
- some good sized groups of Fluttering Shearwaters shooting through
There were lots of Gannets and Black Browed Albatross close in, plus a huge (1500+) raft of Silver Gulls sitting over a school of fish (Salmon, Tailor - the looked pretty big?) with a few terns cruising about above the school, but only 1 smaller, pale tern which didn't hang around.
A Sea Eagle passed through and also picked something off the water.
Also saw two seals heading southwards and a rubbish bin(!).
There were plenty more birds further out too, but couldn't ID anything other than the species noted above although there were definitely smaller birds in with the albatross.
Tom Wilson


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