Top End Sightings

To: Birding-aus <>
Subject: Top End Sightings
From: Nick Leseberg <>
Date: Sat, 9 Nov 2013 14:10:55 +1000
Hi All,

I just finished a couple of weeks birding around the Top End where, as Phil 
Gregory mentioned in his post last week, things are very dry. It also seems 
that the dry conditions further inland are resulting in a few unusual things 
going on with the bird life, although those that live up there may be better 
placed to comment. I don't think I have ever seen as many White-winged Trillers 
as there were this year. They were common in Darwin, and it seemed the most 
common passerine in some places, and on several occasions both White-winged and 
Varied Trillers were recorded at the same site. I recall at this time of year I 
usually only find them further south around Katherine, and definitely not in 
the same numbers as this year.  Perhaps most unusual was three Pied Honeyeaters 
seen at Sullivan Campground near Victoria River Crossing, well outside their 
'normal' range, as well as hundreds and perhaps thousands of Budgerigars around 
Timber Creek. There were almost no finches found from 
 Darwin south through Katherine, and I only found numbers from Vic River 
Crossing southwest and around Darwin. Below is a summary of sites and 
interesting sightings.

Buffalo Creek - Chestnut Rail, Rainbow Pitta
Lee Point - Rainbow Pitta
East Point - Large-tailed Nightjar
Nightcliff - Oriental Plover, Barking owl with 3 fledglings, Arafura Fantail, 
the usual waders
Leanyer STW - Little Ringed Plover, Mangrove Golden Whistler, Mangrove Robin
Holmes Jungle - Eastern Yellow Wagtail, Little Curlew
Howard Springs - Rainbow Pitta, Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove
Pine Creek/Copperfield Dam - Hooded Parrot, Northern Rosella, Bar-breasted 
Honeyeater, Cockatiel, Oriental Plover
Umbrawarra Gorge - Partridge Pigeon, Silver-backed Butcherbird
Gunlom - Northern Rosella, Black-banded Fruit-Dove, Chestnut-backed 
Buttonquail, Sandstone Shrike-Thrush, White-lined Honeyeater, Chestnut-quilled 
Plum Tree Creek - Sandstone Shrike-Thrush, White-lined Honeyeater, 
Chestnut-quilled Rock-Pigeon
Yellow Waters - Little Kingfisher, Sarus Crane, Arafura Fantail
Central Arnhem Road - Northern Shrike-Tit, Red-backed Kingfisher, Long-tailed 
Finch, Golden-backed Honeyeater, Black-tailed Treecreeper
Old Vic River Crossing - Purple-crowned Fairywren, Star Finch
Vic River Escarpment - White-quilled Rock-Pigeon
Buchanan Highway - Gouldian Finch, Long-tailed Finch, Red-backed Kingfisher
Timber Creek - Budgerigar, Red-browed Pardalote, Pictorella Mannikin, Spinifex 
Pigeon, Buff-sided Robin, Grey-fronted Honeyeater, Oriental Plover

Happy to give more information to anyone interested.

Good birding!



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