Crested Honey Buzzard

To: Ian Churchward <>, "" <>
Subject: Crested Honey Buzzard
From: Greg and Val Clancy <>
Date: Fri, 1 Jan 2016 12:08:31 +0000
When I was recently working on the eastern Dorrigo Plateau near Coffs
Harbour I observed an unusual raptor.  It was flying away from me and
appeared to be quite large (harrier size or larger).  It was grey on the
upperparts and the rump was paler (light grey or white).  The wings were
long and were held flat and the primaries had prominent thick dark bars
similar to the Pacific Baza and the Honey-Buzzard in Ian's photo.  I checked
the Crested Honey-Buzzard text in my copy of the Handbook of the Birds of
the World but the colouration of the upperparts didn't seem right for that
species.  I did read that the plumage of the Honey-Buzzard can be quite

I am not claiming that the bird that I saw was a Honey-Buzzard but it was
certainly like nothing I had seen before so I am just seeking comment from
others on Birding-aus.  It may have been an old male Swamp Harrier,
explaining the whitish rump, but the wings were held flat as it flew away
and I think that the wings were too long for that species.  I did consider
Spotted Harrier but the primaries in that species are dark tipped not

Dr Greg. P. Clancy,
Ecologist and Birding-wildlife  Guide
| PO Box 63 Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
| 02 6649 3153 | 0429 601  960

-----Original Message-----
From: Ian Churchward
Sent: Friday, January 1, 2016 6:41 PM
Subject: Crested Honey Buzzard

Hi Everyone,

Took this photo of a Crested Honey Buzzard I believe on the last day of the
year at Lake Joondalup. There where actually three off them together, one I
think was a young bird. To have it fly over head so close was a nice way to
end the year. If someone could confirm it I would greatly appreciate that.
Happy Birding and all the best for the New Year to everyone.

Regards  Ian Churchward.

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