Eremaea Birdlines
Interesting and unusual bird observations
Birdline Victoria

Birdline Victoria (Australia) is a site for the reporting of rare or unusual birds outside their normal range, unusually high or low numbers, early or late arrivals or departures for migrant species and interesting behaviour or unusual habitat usage.

Birdline Victoria is supported by BirdLife Victoria and moderated by Margaret Alcorn, Michael Ramsey , Scott Baker, Simon Starr and Tim Dolby.

We support ethical birding .


Moderators' Note

The Orange-bellied Parrot National Recovery team has asked that, as usual, we do not publish any reports of Orange-bellied Parrots. Please send any sightings directly to Chris Purnell at Also, please note that Birdline Victoria won’t be publishing individual reports of Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo in the greater Melbourne area. However, it is worth noting that there have been a number of reports. We also won't be publishing any more Koel reports this Summer unless it is an extension of their known range.

Recent Sightings

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Reports published in the past 30 hours.

March 2018
Mon 19highlightSquare-tailed Kite
Royal Park, Parkville
Large unmistakable raptor came in hot at 18:28 from the West (Oak St) over Trin Warren Tam-Boore Wetlands with party of Little Ravens and Magpies in tow. Classic STK profile and effortless flight on upswept wings with exaggerated spread primary tips. Was a juv/imm bird with rufous head uniform with underparts and fainter barring on underwing and weaker black subterminal band on square tail than you would expect in an adult. Incredible views for approx 5 minutes, flying low directly over me several times in the Skink habitat. Briefly perched in large eucalyptus before being harassed by Ravens once again, was last seen flying directly east across train line towards Zoo. On balance of probabilities likely same bird as one reported by Steve Davidson from Newport Lakes (7/3/18), which was also a young bird. This record likely represents a 1st for the City of Melbourne ever (No eBird or ALA records). Further information
Daniel Ashdown 19/3 #233872
Sun 18Pacific Swift
Broken River, Benalla town, near the railway bridge.
At 8am about 12 birds seen milling about for 4-5 minutes at a height of 100 metres. They then moved to the northeast. Weather overcast and windy.
Dee McLarty 18/3 #233864
Pacific Swift
Knobs Junction St Andrews
12.30 pm approx twelve birds flew above house from Yarra Glen direction and disappeared high against the sky. Clear if fleeting view with binoculars.
Deb Oliver 18/3 #233858
Sat 17Australasian Bittern
Lake Cullen, NW of Kerang
At Lake Cullen Observing and photographing birds being disturbed by the duck hunters. Saw 3 bitterns and photographed, between 8am and 10.40 am
Giles Daubeney and Nina Tsilikas 19/3 #233873
Black Falcon
Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands--Edithvale
Single Black Falcon made a couple of passes, shuffling the remaining waders - around 100 sharpies, 1 or 2 RN Stints, 50+ Red-kneed Dotterels, 50+ Pied Stilts. Water nearly all gone, a few teal and swamphens. eBird checklist Further information
Mark Stanley 17/3 #233850
Fri 16Fan-tailed Cuckoo
My son found it stunned in our garden. Released 2 hours later. Possibly same bird harassed by Noisy Miners and Grey Bucherbirds the next day. Is the plumage a transition from immature to adult? Interesting that the species has visited my place or the neighbours before on March 17, 1999 and March 16 2002. Just coincidence?
Michael Norris 18/3 #233853
Spotted Nightjar
Goschen Bushland Reserve
Spotted Nightjar flew over us and obligingly landed on the track not far from the entrance gate. As we tried to get progressively closer, it flew off from the "sitting" position rather than standing up first. Very long wings. We could not find it again after it settled in the leaf litter. Also saw juvenile Olive-backed Oriole. It was quite tame (youthful innocence) however was not welcomed by the Miners and Wattlebirds.
Murray Chambers, Alan Spalding 17/3 #233848
Curlew Sandpiper
Braeside Park Wetlands
Water levels low at Braeside wetlands currently, 3 Curlew Sandpipers along with 60-odd Sharp-tailed Sandpipers and a single Red-necked Stint. Present in the afternoon while tide height still fairly full on the coast (no grey wDers present the previous morning). Good numbers of Red-kneed and Black-fronted Dotterels (and Blue-billed Ducks the previous day.
Allan Richardson 17/3 #233845
Square-tailed Kite
Gemmill Swamp Nature Conservation Reserve Mooroopna
First record for this Kite at this Reserve in 51 years of recording observations eBird checklist
Don Roberts 16/3 #233839
Thu 15White-throated Needletail
Harrison’s Track, Anglesea Heath
~60 circling and drifting easterly
Tom Fletcher, Gordon McCarthy 15/3 #233837
Whistling Kite
Brunswick West
Circled around high overhead for a short while then continued flying north. Have not observed one in this area before.
Catherine Noone 15/3 #233830
Wed 14Red-backed Kingfisher
Goschen Bushland Reserve
Single bird seen near the main entrance on Ultima-Lake Boga Rd. Also seen male and female Pied Honeyeaters.
Bernadette Haywood 14/3 #233827
highlightGrey Goshawk, Baillon's Crake and Peregrine Falcon
Jacana Wetlands
A white morph female goshawk seen and followed upstream, from Jacana to Westmeadows, as it flew short distances from one perch to the next constantly being harassed by Australian Magpies, Little Ravens and/or Sulphur-crested Cockatoos. Great views of the crake immediately north of the Ring Road at the bridge over the rubbish-strewn Moonee Ponds Creek. Also a male falcon making sorties over the wetlands south of the Ring Road from atop a massive power pylon. eBird checklist
Charles Silveira 14/3 #233826
Scarlet Honeyeater
Kyneton Primary School, Simpson Street, Kyneton
Single bird singing briefly at sunrise. Up high in a tree canopy. Haven't seen or heard any since the great influx dissipated late last year.
Lawrie Conole 14/3 #233821
Mon 12Red Necked Stint 1500 Curlew Sandpiper 200
Lake Victoria (Point Lonsdale)
Large numbers of Stints and Curlew Sandpipers in pre-breeding plumage. It's that time of year again. A couple of Double Banded Plovers eBird checklist
Angus Hartshorn 13/3 #233815
Common Sandpiper
Hastings between the jetty and the boat ramp
Single bird, feeding on mudflats; very flighty; Unusual sighting for this location
S. Plunkett 12/3 #233811
White-headed Pigeon (1), Topknot Pigeon (1), Australasian Figbirds (3)
1 White-headed Pigeon, 1 Topknot Pigeon and 3 Australasian Figbirds still present around the Western end of Mairburn Road. eBird checklist
Owen Lishmund, Philip Peel, David Adam, Bill Twiss 12/3 #233803
Sun 11Lewin's rail
Tankerton, French Island
2 Lewin's rails seen foraging in exposed mud amidst mangroves along opposite banks of Tankerton Creek, French Island, about 3pm (shortly after low tide). Observed from the bridge over the creek at the junction of Coast Road and Tankerton Road. Birds allowed excellent, sustained observation.
Harry Saddler 14/3 #233822
Black Falcon, Spotted Harrier, Black-tailed Godwit
All at the T-section. The Black Falcon was right into a huge flock of waders, but didn't catch anything. White-winged Black Terns going into summer plumage on ponds near the Little River hide.
Clive Kaplan, Aidan Sudbury 12/3 #233800
Brush Bronzewing
Royal Botanic Gardens (Cranbourne)
Single Brush Bronzewing on the eastern boundary of the Research Garden.
Rowan Mott and Cathy Cavallo 12/3 #233799
Sat 10Pacific Swift
Port Fairy
Around 100 birds flying low above the "stage" marquees and adjacent Southcombe Caravan Park at the Port Fairy music festival on Saturday evening about 1930Hours. Further information
Neil Macumber 12/3 #233810
Pacific Swift
McGlashins Swamp W.R.
At least 100, but hard to tell as they were coming and going so much over 2 hours. Not sure if they were the same birds each time they came back. Clear blue sky, a bit gusty. Mixing with martins and swallows, and even drinking from the lake. I tried to get shots of this but couldn't get anything decent.
Adam Fry 10/3 #233787
Fri 9Scaly-breasted Lorikeet
Travancore Park, Travancore
Four Scaly-breasted Lorikeets flying around our Park with the other two common ones, Rainbow and Musk and, occasionally, Little Lorikeets. Further information
Chris Lester 10/3 #233784
megamegaWhite-cheeked Honeyeater, Eastern Bristlebird
Croajingalong National Park--Howe Flat
Amazed to find a White-cheeked Honeyeater along Howe Flat Track near the start of the boardwalk which leads to the ocean. Feeding on Banksia and Eucalypt flowers which are in profusion here at the moment. At least 8 Eastern Bristlebirds found along the Howe Flat boardwalk and walking track. See eBird list for further details. eBird checklist
Owen Lishmund, David Adam, Philip Peel, Bill Twiss, Jack Winterbottom 9/3 #233781
White Throated Needletail
Crusoe Reservoir, Bendigo
3 birds flying directly over the Res.
Ken and Maureen Dredge. 9/3 #233775
Gang Gang Cockatoos
Mitchell River walk West Bairnsdale
The Hawthorn berry bushes adjacent to the walking track are in full fruit. The Gang Gangs were there in large numbers. At least 30, possibly many more.
Denise McLarty 9/3 #233774
Thu 8highlightWhite Cheeked Honeyeater
Croajingolong National Park--Howe Flat Track
saw briefly in the morning then at least 6 times between 6:30 and 7:20 pm. Flying in and out of Banksias on Howe Flat Tk near the "boardwalk". In evening sun. Very flighty, harassed by New Hollands. very sad no photo, it was moving too fast for me. Readily identifiable by naked eye, huge white cheek patches. Voice quite different to NH, Aust Bird Guide gives "chackup" which sounds about right eBird checklist
Angus Hartshorn 13/3 #233814
White-bellied Sea Eagle
Annya State Forest, northwest of Heywood
Single sub-adult bird observed in flight over forest from Annya Fire Tower. Came from the east and was last seen heading south in the general direction of Portland.
Peter Barrand 9/3 #233773
Lewin's Rail
Hastings Foreshore Reserve
One bird seen clearly foraging in wetlands at southern end of boardwalk under small bridge over creek/drain.
S and S King 9/3 #233772
Wed 7Grey Goshawk (White Morph)
Shepherds Bush
GG flew into a nearby tree and perched for several minutes allowing me to get some reasonable photographs. It was sighted by others for a day or so after my sighting.
Geoff Sloane 18/3 #233856
Tue 6Eastern Reef Egret (dark morph)
Davis Creek Beach, Mallacoota
Flying parallel to the beach just beyond the shore break.
John Eichler 6/3 #233754
White-throated Needletail
Big Hill, Bendigo
6 birds hawking quite low over canopy. Heading in a south to north direction.
Ken Dredge and G McMaster 6/3 #233748
Swift Parrot
Monash University Clayton Campus
Two Swift Parrots heard and then seen in the north-west carpark at the Clayton Monash campus. Calls heard over a period of ~5 minutes at 8:30 this morning before the birds were spotted as they flew away from a Red Wattlebird. The Swifties looked to have landed in trees next to the multistorey carpark, but could not be relocated. Not much in the way of flowering here at the moment, so it will be interesting to see if they stick around.
Rowan Mott and Cathy Cavallo 6/3 #233744
Mon 5Australian Magpie (black-backed)
Dava Drive ,Mornington, Vic
I observed this bird back in 2016 but did not have a camera at the time. I noted it . sighted it again on 5 March 2018 and got a photo this time,and got a photo (attached) this time.It was wife awhite backed magpie (male) Very unusual to see black backed magpies this far south I advised Val Ford of Birdlife Australia. Member Con Duyvestyn relocated the birds and got some more photos of both birds Further information
Roger Laurence Skipsey 10/3 #233786
Sun 4highlightPectoral Sandpiper (1) Sharp-tailed Sandpiper (10) Marsh Sandpiper (1)
Cullens Lake Wildlife Reserve
Single Pectoral Sandpiper seen foraging near Sharp-tailed Sandpipers on the Eastern side of the lake. Other notable sightings include a single Marsh Sandpiper transitioning into breeding plumage, an immature White-bellied Sea-eagle and an immature Peregrine Falcon. eBird checklist
John Woodward 5/3 #233736
Plumed Whistling Duck (21), Freckled Duck (1)
Middle Lake Ibis Rookery
21 Plumed Whistling Ducks flew from the bank into the water just North of the bird hide and a lone Freckled duck seen in the same spot. eBird checklist
Tim Nickholds, Owen Lishmund 4/3 #233729
Sat 3highlightPurple-crowned Lorikeet
Cabbage Tree Creek Flora Reserve
At the time of observation I didn't realise that Purple-crowned Lorikeet was a rarity in East Gippsland. Retrospectively posting after conversation with other birders on the recent East Vic pelagic. Seen at the Cabbage Tree Palms Picnic Area. Two birds flying overhead, initially alerted by call. Eucalypts in the area are in heavy blossom, also Little & Rainbow Lorikeets and a range of Honeyeaters. eBird checklist
Isaac Clarey 5/3 #233740
Long-toed Stint
Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands--Seaford
found the reported Long-toed Stint feeding with a Sharp-tailed Sandpiper after a protracted search-area fast drying out
Aidan Sudbury Clive Kaplan 4/3 #233725
Fri 2highlightLong-toed Stint
Edithvale-Seaford Wetlands--Seaford
Following up previous report of an LTS at Seaford Swamp was able to find 2 individuals. In northern part of Swamp just south of small pumping station.
Dan Ashdown & Brad White 3/3 #233713
Striped Honeyeater
Goschen Bushland Reserve
Striped Honeyeater seen in flowering gum, near old tennis court. Also seen nine Black Honeyeaters, adult and juvenile.
Bernadette Haywood 2/3 #233708
Thu 1highlightAustralian Pratincole
Cullens Lake Wildlife Reserve
Observed working its way along the shoreline in vicinity of other waders.
Simon Starr and Damien Cook 6/3 #233752
Peregrine Falcon
Bald Hill S 36.72136 E 146.37479
Observed Peregrine Falcon flying close by overhead when I was on Bald Hill, installing a portable Weather Station for the CFA and BOM. Was able to observe the bird for about 10 to 15 seconds.
Michael O'Sullivan 2/3 #233710

February 2018
Wed 28highlightLong-toed Stint, Marsh Sandpiper, Latham's Snipe
Seaford Swamp
On the BirdLife Australia monthly survey for Melbourne Water, 10 species of shorebirds were noted including singles of Long-toed Stint and Marsh Sandpiper, as well as 12 Curlew Sandpipers and 45 Latham's Snipe. Standing water had all but dried up and there were not there were not the huge numbers of shorebirds that were at the site during the January survey which had recorded the Long-toed Stint, a couple of Pectoral Sandpipers, 2,500 Sharp-tailed Sandpipers and a minimum of 115 Latham's Snipe- the highest number for both species here since the early 1980s.
Sean Dooley, Andrew Silcocks 1/3 #233698
highlightLong-toed Stint (1), Pectoral Sandpiper (3), Wood Sandpiper (1) Freckled Duck (1500)
Koorangie Wildlife Reserve
Rarer waders found amongst around 600 Sharp-tailed Sandpipers on First Marsh which is nearly dry but with shallow water across hundreds of hectares. Lake Bael Bael still supporting 30 to 40 thousand waterbirds (20,000+ Coot) with 1500 Freckled Duck amongst them.
Simon Starr 28/2 #233689
Stubble Quail
Carpenter Street, Brighton
Found at the front of an office block near the corner of Carpenter and Church Street Brighton. Taken to a local vet.
Andrea Diaz and Andrea Canzano 28/2 #233685
Juvenile Pacific Koel
Being fed by two Red Wattlebirds in the central car park
Angus Hartshorn 28/2 #233684
Tue 27Little Lorikeet
St Andrews
This is the first sighting of Little Lorikeet at our place in St Andrews - in 35 plus years. The seven birds have been around for a few days but today was the first photo opportunity. We've had Musk, Rainbow and now Little Lorikeet here pretty constantly since the new year - this is most unusual but awesome! eBird checklist
Deb Oliver 27/2 #233674
Mon 26highlightAustralasian Figbird
A adult pair of Australasian Figbirds were noted resting in the canopy of some flowering Southern Mahogany gums around 1800hrs today. Seen over a 15-20 min. period before being harassed and "moved on" by a group of Little and Red Wattlebirds, this observation adds to the number recorded west of Mallacoota recently forming part of a regular/annual extension into Eastern Victoria.
Jacquie and Len Axen 27/2 #233676
Sun 25Baillon's Crake
Albert Park Lake
Seen in the northern most pollution control pond and to the north of Powerhouse.
Brian & Sandra Goyen 25/2 #233657
Sat 24300-400 Sanderling
Sisters Point, Killarney Beach, Western Victoria
A large flock of waders were found roosting in front of a Hooded Plover protection fence, mixed in with them where Double-banded & Red-capped Plovers. Small groups of bird would break off and run down to shoreline to feed on small invertebrates as well as the many black crickets washed up in the tide line. Birds did not seem to be at all concerned about us or the fisherman being present. Reporting this sighting now after posting Dot Callander's pictures on Australian Bird Identification Face Book page for identification clarification/confirmation. photo supplied by D. Callander Further information
Samantha Greiner & members of BirdLife Hamilton 12/3 #233802
highlightChannel-billed Cuckoo
Edward street, Healesville
1 bird heard on and off during the afternoon. Not seen. eBird checklist
Falk Wicker 25/2 #233653
Bassian Thrush
Brisbane Ranges National Park--Anakie Gorge
Uncommonly seen in the Brisbane Ranges, preferring areas of thicker vegetation. eBird checklist
Bernie McRitchie 24/2 #233650
Pacific Swift
I heard a weird call, and looked up to see in total 300-500 Pacific Swifts streaming past at various heights, just ahead of a weather front.
Neil Macumber 24/2 #233649
Black Hill Nature Reserve
One bird at the summit. Observed while mountain biking in tall pine forest interspersed by eucalypts. First noticed when characteristic call was heard. As far as I know this is a strange Place to find a weebill and it is the first record for the area.
Indra Bone 24/2 #233646
Fri 23Fork-tailed Swift
Cape Otway Road at Marshmans Outlet
At least 25 Fork-tailed Swifts hawking on a wind change. eBird checklist
Colin Cannard 23/2 #233641
Thu 22highlightPossible Eurasian Hobby
Beechworth (Fighting Gully Road)
A hobby was seen perched on the dead top of a roadside tree. We stopped and saw it had white underparts with dense parallel vertical streaks like a Eurasian Hobby (which I saw last year in WA!, also in Europe). Unfortunately it flew before we could photograph it, and I haven't been able to find it again. We need more info before claiming this really bizarre record, which would be a first for eastern Australia. If anyone finds it again photos will be very useful, to eliminate strange plumages of Australian Hobby, or a pale Oriental Hobby. We saw it in early evening (1830) between Andrew Court and Londrigan Lane, on the north side of Fighting Gully Road (south of Beechworth). Possible prey species in area include grasshoppers, starlings & dusky woodswallows, not super-abundant. Moderator's note: will be immediately upgraded to 'mega' status if can be confirmed.
Richard Loyn, Margaret & Richard Alcorn 27/2 #233675
Gang-gang Cockatoo
The first I've seen/heard this year and earlier than usual. A group of five including one red-headed male. Sparred with resident Noisy Miners and moved off south along the line of the Plenty River. Moderators note: published as an early autumn sighting. Gang Gangs become quite commonly seen in the eastern suburbs from autumn onwards
Neil Murray 23/2 #233644
Black Falcon
Manor Lakes
1:50pm. Black Falcon carrying prey over houses in Clematis Crescent, Wyndham Vale. It dropped its prey and quickly re-caught it in a dive, two or three times. It went south towards the main lake of Manor Lakes. eBird checklist
Bernie McRitchie 22/2 #233633
Swift Parrot.
Hoppers Crossing
At 1645 hours today, I observed eleven (11) Swift Parrots flying over my residence. Very distinctive flight profile and call, not to be confused with the numerous Rainbow Lorikeets in the Werribee area. Numerous Sugar Gums still flowering in the local area. Possibly early arrivals? eBird checklist
Peter Gibbons 22/2 #233632
Tue 20Black Falcon
Syndal (northern part of Glen Waverley)
Another urban raptor! Looked up in response to Noisy Miner alarm calls when leaving for work, about 7:40 this morning. Large, uniformly dark, pointed-winged raptor was passing overhead north-eastward at some height, indignantly escorted (too respectfully keeping distance to say "mobbed") by pair of Galahs, which were noticeably smaller. No binoculars available, and bird was only in view for 20-30 seconds (but nice sunny morning and good light), so ID based on lack of any apparent contrast in underwings, even when slightly banking; steady, purposeful flight and long, straight-sided tail with square or slightly rounded tip - no notch or point. Wings too pointed to be anything but falcon, flight too direct, colour too dark and lack of silvery wing linings seem to rule out Brown Falcon.
Jack Krohn 20/2 #233622
Sun 18Banded Lapwing
Patho Plains
80+ Banded Lapwing in a flooded paddock on Aird Rd. This paddock is quickly drying out. There are also dozens of Black-tailed Nativehens, Sharp-tailed Sandpipers, 3 Common Greenshank, Spotted Crakes, and Red-kneed Dotterels present.
Bernadette Haywood 18/2 #233600
Difficult to find/ hard to see
Early arrival or late departure
Interesting behaviour
High/low numbers
Unusual habitat
Uncommon in area
Outlying population
Repeat report of highlights
Of general interest to birders
Outside normal range/irruption
Exceptional number
Repeat report of megas
Rare vagrant Australia or Victoria
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