Possible Carpentarian Grasswren at historic Borroloola site

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Subject: Possible Carpentarian Grasswren at historic Borroloola site
From: John Weigel <>
Date: Sun, 22 Jun 2014 14:19:17 +1000
Although I’ve shrunk away from initial 100% confidence, I’m still about 80% 
sure that I heard a Carpentarian Grasswren at the reserve Friday morning (20 
June). I just couldn’t convert to a sighting in the limited time I had 
available. As expected, Carabirini Reserve, being a Northern Territory 
conservation resource, is presently comprised of a ‘mosaic’ of newly burnt 
patches, recently burnt patches (with perhaps one to two years old spinifex), 
and fairly recently burnt patches comprising precious limited expanses of 
undergrowth that look to me to be maybe five years post-‘cool burn’. The 
Barrawulla walkway passes through a section of perhaps a couple of hundred 
metres of this relatively mature habitat, adjacent to the magnificent sandstone 
domes, perhaps a km before the (currently unsuitable) stretch mentioned in 
Dolby and Clarke. It’s a beautiful section of the park with a concentration of 
birds predominated by very active and cheeky Sandstone Shrike-thrushes. I 
mention this uncertain Grasswren record because I think it is worth a look by 
any birders that may find themselves in that area prior to the next wave of 
NT-style environmental management. I don’t believe there have been confirmed 
northern sightings of Carpentarian Grasswrens for a few years at least, and who 
knows, perhaps if a sighting can be confirmed, an argument for genuine 
protection can be mounted.

John Weigel

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