square tail kite near Central Tilba, south coast NSW

To: "'Martin Butterfield'" <>, "'Kim Sterelny'" <>
Subject: square tail kite near Central Tilba, south coast NSW
From: <>
Date: Sun, 8 Jan 2023 11:48:29 +1100

In the late 1970s I observed the first Square-tailed Kites in the Clarence Valley at about the same time that Stephen Marchant recorded them at Moruya.  They had probably been present at both localities for some time but were overlooked or misidentified or the numerous coastal and near-coastal records are a recent occurrence.


Greg Clancy

Coutts Crossing


From: Birding-Aus <> On Behalf Of Martin Butterfield
Sent: Sunday, 8 January 2023 9:36 AM
To: Kim Sterelny <>
Cc: birding-aus <>
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] square tail kite near Central Tilba, south coast NSW


At Mallacoota they are not common,  There are records for 9 months of the year with a bias in both raw counts and reporting rate towards Summer.




On Sat, 7 Jan 2023 at 22:17, Kim Sterelny via Birding-Aus <m("","birding-aus");">> wrote:

Hi Folks


I do not know how unusual this is, but a square tailed kite soared over my head, just a few metres up, near Central Tilba yesterday, just above the treeline-level. I have never seen them here and initially thought it was a whistling kite, which are fairly regular. I checked my literature which suggests that they are spring/summer visitors to the south east. So perhaps not too unexpected. Likewise, I do not know whether they are apt to stay in a fairly local patch, but if they are, for those who know the area, the bird was quartering the valley where Punkalla-Tilba Rd meets Ridge Road.


Happy new year, all




Kim Sterelny, School of Philosophy, Research School of the Social Sciences, Australian National University, Acton, 0200, ACT, Australia






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