Tuesday, December 12, 2017


Photographed at Old Bar, NSW, December 2017
1230                 ALEUTIAN TERN               Onychoprion aleuticus 

AUSTRALIA                  723

Former Latin name was Sterna aleutica. Breeds in colonies on coasts and islands in Alaska and easternmost Siberia; migrates to Indonesia and Malaysia, though little is known about its wintering habits here. Feeds by plunge diving for fish, usually in saltwater environs.

NOTE:  In October 2017, birders Liam Murphy was looking through photographs taken in December 2016. He found an unidentified tern. It was tentatively identified as an Aleutian tern, never before recorded in Australia. He returned to the place where the photographs were taken in December 2017. Liam found a group of 13 Aleutian tern wintering there. (These photographs were taken the next day)

Monday, December 4, 2017


Only just recording shots, will suffice until I can improve. Taken at Port Macquarie, December 2017
1229                EASTERN GRASS OWL                     Tyto longimembris

AUSTRALIA                   722

Also known as Australian Grass Owl. Found in grasslands coastal heaths, cane fields, agricultural land and swamps feeding on small rodents. Two distinct populations in Australia: one on flood plains of large rivers from Cape York to Manning River (NSW); the other on grasslands on Barkley Tablelands and Channel Country (WA)

Sunday, November 26, 2017


(Male) Photographed at Hatten, Queensland, November 2017
1228                   SUPERB FRUIT DOVE              Ptilinopus superbus

AUSTRALIA                721

Also known as the Purple-crowned Fruit Dove. Range: n-e Queensland to n-e NSW, less common further south, but has been seen in pockets near Moruya (NSW) and vagrants in Victoria and Tasmania. Inhabits rainforests and similar closed forest where forages high for the fruit of trees, such as figs and palms. Partly migratory and nomadic.



Photographed on the Daintree River, Queensland, November 2017

1227                  SPOTTED WHISTLING DUCK              Dendrocygna guttata

AUSTRALIA               720

Ranges throughout southern Philippines, Wallacea and New Guinea; has gradually been colonising northern Australia; now down as far as Daintree, though has been seen in Cairns.

Photographed at Wonga Beach, Queensland, November 2017


Photographed at Eungella, Queensland, November 2017

1226                  RED-BACKED BUTTONQUAIL                   Turnix maculosus

AUSTRALIA                  719

Also known as Black-backed, Black-spotted and Orange-bellied Buttonquail. Found also in indonesia, New Guinea,, Philippines and Soloman Islands. Fourteen recognised subspecies; subspecies melanotus found in northern Australia.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017


Photographed on The Postman's Track, Daybook, Queensland, November 2017
1225                RED-CHESTED BUTTONQUAIL             Turnix pyrrhothorax

AUSTRALIA                    718

Endemic to Australia; widespread though uncommon in NSW, Queensland, northern WA, and NT; classified as vulnerable in Victoria. Habitat is dense grasslands, and open, grassy woodlands of acacia, Red River Gums and Black Box; also in crops and weedy fields with dense cover.

Saturday, November 11, 2017


Photographed at Noosa Heads National Park, Queensland, November 2017
1224                   BLACK-BREASTED BUTTONQUAIL          Turnix melanogaster

AUSTRALIAN BIRDS                 717

Also known as Black-fronted Buttonquail. Rare bird, endemic to eastern Australia, usually in rainforest, rated as near threatened. Found from Harvey Bay south to ne corner of NSW

Monday, September 25, 2017


Photographed Christmas Island, December 2016
 1223              COOK'S SWIFT                  Apus cooki 

AUSTRALIA                      716                 

Breeds in limestone caves in Thailand, Myanmar and Indochina; lays 2-3 eggs on cliff returning to same site each year.

Thursday, August 10, 2017


Photographed on the Strzelecki Track (Art Baker Lookout), August 2017
1222              EYREAN GRASSWREN                Amytornis goyderi      

AUSTRALIA                715

Found in clumps of cane grass on dunes. 14-16.5 cm. Simpson/Strzelecki Deserts in far sw Q, far se NT. Locally common, sedentary, locally nomadic.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017


Photographed at Gluepot, South Australia, August 2017
1221                  BLACK-EARED MINER                 Manorina melanotis 

AUSTRALIA               714

Restricted to large blocks of intact mallee in se Aust; population centred on Gluepot Reserve (SA). 26 mm. Very rare and were predicted to become extinct through interbreeding with Yellow-throated miner but may be holding their own.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017


Photographed in Murray-Sunset National Park, August 2017
1220                RED-LORED WHISTLER                Pachycephala rufogularis

AUSTRALIA               713

Found in low, patchy mallee/heath/spinifex; stunted mallee on sandhills; cypress pines; broom bush. 19-22 cm. Inland se Aust.: from Round Hill NR, Cocoparra NP, to nw Vic, Big Desert NP-Sunset Country, occasionally to Hattah/Kulkyne NP; w. to Murray mallee of e. SA. Rare, local.


Photographed in Murray-Sunset National Park, August 2017
1219                   STRIATED GRASSWREN                Amytornis striatus 

AUSTRALIA               712

Found in spinifex, with mallee, acacias, other inane scrubs, coastal scrubs in WA. 14.5-19.5 cm. Four subspecies recognised: oweni, whitei, rowleyi and striatus. Striatus found in Murray mallee.

Monday, July 31, 2017


Photographed at Tilley Swamp, South Australia, July 2017
1218                NORTHERN SHOVELER               Anas clypeata   

AUSTRALIA             711

Breeds in northern Eurasia and North America; winters s. to Thailand, Philippines; infrequent vagrant to Australia but found in most states. Wing 239-249 mm; bill 62-72 mm.

NOTE: Long range shot as bird was on private property with no access.