Eremaea Birdlines
Interesting and unusual bird observations
Birdline New South Wales

Birdline NSW 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 New South Wales is supported by Birding NSW, Birdlife Southern NSW and Cumberland Bird Observers Club and moderated by Alan Morris, Max Breckenridge, Mick Roderick and Simon Blanchflower.

We support ethical birding .


Moderators' Note

The moderators support government regulations related to the COVID-19 outbreak regarding access to restricted areas, social distancing and unnecessary travel. We will not publish any reports that potentially breach these regulations. Birders are encouraged to post lists to eBird Australia, where sightings are incorporated into the BirdLife Australia Atlas. To do this you need to register with eBird Australia then login. All Regent Honeyeater and Swift Parrot reports should be forwarded to Mick Roderick to assist in the recovery of these severely declining species: Note we will not be publishing reports of Accipiter raptors (Collared Sparrowhawk, Grey/Brown Goshawks) or Square-tailed Kites unless they are in unusual locations or are seen with unusual prey etc.

Recent Sightings


Reports published in the past 30 hours.

July 2021
Thu 22highlightSwift Parrot
Mile End Rd Reserve
Ongoing (estimated 35+) birds feeding on Lerps high in the eucalyptus trees and constantly calling, in same area as reported by Darryl Smedley on the 22 July and found by Edwin Vella before the big rain events a couple of months ago, have been absent after the rains but seem to have returned. Remained there for the entire period I was observing (exercising). eBird checklist
Micharel Rutkowski 22/7 #260475
Curlew Sandpiper
Clarence River estuary, Yamba
2 Curlew Sandpiper observed in 2 separate shorebird survey locations (possibly same bird). First observed feeding with flock of Bar-tailed Godwits on mudflat near Rabbit Island. Second observed a short distance away (approx 1 hour later) feeding with flock of 11 Double-banded Plover on sandflat near Dart Island. Rare species for Clarence, especially over wintering birds. 2 eBird checklists submitted S92107523 and S92111657. Birdlife Shorebird Survey report to be submitted. eBird checklist
Darryl, Gary and Margaret Eggins 22/7 #260474
Wed 21Yellow-nosed Albatross (2), Black-browed Albatross (14)
Sydney Harbour National Park--Chowder Head
Early this morning there was 16 Albatrosses following a fishing boat off Chowder Head Mosman heading towards the bridge. 2 were Yellow-nosed and 14 were Black-browed. Largest number of Albatrosses that I have seen actually inside Sydney harbour.
Simon Blanchflower 21/7 #260472
Tue 20highlightSwift Parrot
Caddies Creek Reserve, Rouse Hill
Small numbers observed feeding in the upper canopy of eucalypts along Caddies Creek near the confluence with Second Ponds Creek and where the vintage Vauxhall vehicles are parked. After about 20 mins. of observation (up to 10:30am) they all suddenly departed to the north-west. Estimated 20 birds.
Darryl Smedley 20/7 #260470
Mon 19Horsfield's Bronze-Cuckoo
Bonds Lookout/Jack Vanny Reserve, Maroubra Beach
Surprised to observe a juvenile Horsefield's Bronze-Cuckoo in coastal vegetation at Maroubra (north-end) 11:00AM 19/07/21. Species identified by olive-brown above with bronze/green sheen on back and upper tail. Prominent dark-brown eyestripe with white eyebrow stripe above, extending to neck. Underbody white/cream. Faint/lack of barring, duller appearance and behaviour (on-ground, sheltering) indicated the individual was juvenile. Undertail appeared rufous when spread, with black/white barred edges. Observed briefly foraging on the ground, then sheltering in coastal shrub (-33.945036, 151.260535). Hasty picture captured on mobile. No calls given, and call play-back did not elicit a response or further observation. eBird checklist
Jessica Rooke 19/7 #260464
Sun 18Pacific Gull
Flat Rock (Ballina)
Single immature spotted on beach at base of rock platform, one was previously reported on Birdline for the period 7-20th June 2021, around Flat Rock Ballina, presumably the same bird?
Justin Mallee (via Peter Higgins) 24/7 #260481
Speckled Warbler
Shanes Park Air services site (Blacktown LGA, western Sydney)
A male Speckled Warbler was seen well amongst the Buff-rumped Thornbills. I have not seen them here since April 2018 so a very welcome sighting for this rare species in Sydney. Also 2 Australian Owlet-nightjars calling during the morning at 2 different sites here, a White-eared Honeyeater (rarely recorded here) as well as several Spotless Crakes in the large reed bed.
Edwin Vella 18/7 #260463
Double-barred Finch
Barton Park - Rockdale
Very pleased to see 4 Double-barred Finches on western edge of sport field on edge of regeneration area. Red-browed finches are regularly sighted but nice to see a flock of approx. 50 behind stadium on airport side.
Ivan Cindric 18/7 #260462
Fri 16Wandering Whistle Ducks
Lily Pond, Koala St. Port Macquarie
12 WWD on the pond, feeding this morning. There have been 9 for the last week but 12 is the most I've seen here at once. eBird checklist
Ian Kerr 18/7 #260461
highlightSwift Parrot
Rouse Hill/North Kellyville.
About 35 Swift Parrots heard and observed in bushland north and east of the confluence of Caddies Creek and Second Ponds Creek. There was a lot of other bird activity in the area. The Swift Parrots were heard and observed for about an hour over a large area of bushland. The total number was difficult to estimate until they flocked and flew north along Caddies Creek. I have previously observed Swift Parrots here several times during winter in 2018.
David Chorobski 16/7 #260453
Wed 14Channel-billed Cuckoos
Heard what sounded like a Channel-billed Cuckoo behind the house but because having breakfast didn't bother to get up to investigate but instead dismissed the call as coming from say a currarong or a white-faced heron. Then saw, without binos., 4 Channel-billed Cuckoo shaped-and-sized birds flying over tops of trees, going due southwards. Book states they arrive from August onwards so guessed maybe these could be four who had left early for their holidays so as to beat the rush.
Andy Wood 17/7 #260456
Tue 13Swift Parrot
Erina Heights
A lone Swift Parrot seen at the corner of Matcham Rd and Central Coast Hwy, Erina Heights, flew out of a near by tree then flew at height overhead and headed in a roughly south easterly direction. Unmistakably a Swiftie! Great to see!
Darren Earnshaw 13/7 #260448
Rajah Shelduck
Ballengarra/Telegraph Point
Duck has has moved to the nearby dairy and only showing for the last two days. Here again this morning.
Phillip Shelley 13/7 #260447
Mon 12Restless Flycatcher, Grey Goshawk
Eastlakes golf course
Sighting of an unusual trio of, Restless Flycatcher, Grey Goshawk and White-bellied Sea-eagle dominated an hour of birding at the southern end of this productive golf course. The former 2 have been present for at least a week and I have even seen the (presumably the same individual) Grey Goshawk on the southern perimeter of Kingsford-Smith Airport.
David Mitford 14/7 #260452
Sun 11Spotless Crake
Deaves Road, Mandalong
Was driving home this afternoon around 3:30 when a Spotless Crake walked out of some clumps of roadside vegetation, saw my (rapidly braking) car, froze briefly then disappeared back into the vegetation it had come from. There's a fair bit of swampy country around where I saw it. A very pleasant Sunday afternoon surprise.
Paul Schofield 11/7 #260445
highlightRadjah Shelduck
Bellangarra, Wilson River Bridge
A pair of Radjah Shelduck on the river. I would think quite unusual this far south. (Moderator's Note: Yes, unusual for NSW but consistent with previous reports. AKM)
Phillip Shelley 11/7 #260443
Sat 10White-bellied Cuckoo Shrike
Gum Bend Lake Condobolin
A pair seen along the river right beside the lake. Very unusual to see these birds here
Warren Chad 11/7 #260442
Grey-faced Petrel
Fort Drive, Newcastle
Just under a hundred Grey-faced Petrels seen off Fort Drive late this afternoon before the rain squalls arrived. In actual fact there was likely many more, because there were birds out wide, but I was focussing on the inshore areas in the vain hope that the Black-fronted Tern might have shown again! Many of the petrels were arcing very high in the air - as they do - wonderful spectacle - but some were circling back and seemingly feeding with gannets and Fluttering-type Shearwaters. Also of note was at least two pairs doing synchronised flight displays. At the same time Liam Murphy was watching the same thing off Maroubra. There would have been many hundreds of Grey-faceds just off the NSW coast today.
Mick Roderick and Jeff Jones 10/7 #260438
Pacific Baza
Glenmore Park (Apple Gum Reserve)
2 birds seen flying around, being harassed by noisy miners and grey butcherbird. Each one seen perched separately, with chest barring and crest clearly visible. Seen near basketball court in Apple Gum Reserve. eBird checklist
Martin Snowball 10/7 #260435
Thu 8Wedge-tailed Eagle
Shoplands Road, Annangrove
Pair of Wedge-tailed Eagles circling low over my house early afternoon. Neighbour told me that they made an unsuccessful attack on his little Pomeranian dog last week.
Darryl Smedley 8/7 #260433
Square-tailed Kite
Adult flew low over the road near Farrer School providing excellent views. I noticed very few ebird records of STQ in this area, but note that there was a recent observation near this location from May. eBird checklist
Tim Henderson 8/7 #260432
Large-billed Scrubwren; Powerful Owl
Lovers Jump Creek Reserve, North Turramurra
2 scrubwrens seen stripping treebark and feeding id dead foliage in a large blue gum along the west side of the creek near Burns Rd. About 6m up but regularly came lower, and able to get good views of very plain plumage, pinkish legs, upturned bill and dark eye. New species in this reserve for me; and e-bird records indicate might be a recent arrival. Single Powerful Owl was seen roosting in deep creekside vegetation in the same area. eBird checklist
Tom Wilson 8/7 #260429
Wed 7Wedg-tailed Eagle
Abercrombie Karst Conservation Reserve
So i was having a look at a Dove until I heard Magpie-larks and Noisy Miners going off at something that came out of the tree tops, which circled around me, and I discovered that it was a Wedge-tailed Eagle. eBird checklist
matai.ngaha 13/7 #260449
Ground Cuckoo-shrike, Banded Lapwing, Brown Songlark
10 km W of Narrabri (private property, no public access)
On the same property as the Eastern Barn Owls reported earlier, along Culgoora Road between Narrabri and Wee Waa, a family clan of 8 Ground Cuckoo-shrikes was found foraging in a submerged paddock. In the same paddock at least 2 Banded Lapwings were present. On the other side of the driveway, opposite were the above were seen, a male Brown Songlark was marking its territory, singing in display flight above tall rank grass on a chilly day after morning frost in the middle of winter (distant photos of the latter obtained, but not shown here). Both photos displayed here taken by Vanessa Collins.
Michael Dahlem & Vanessa Collins 8/7 #260431
Eastern Barn Owl
10 km W of Narrabri (private property, no public access)
Following up on a report in local media, found at least 5 Eastern Barn Owls of a total of at least 10 at their nest. Details are not 100% clear, but this is a pair that has had at least 2 consecutive clutches, possibly 3, in response to the on-going mouse plague. The 10 birds seen about 2 weeks ago probably do not include the 3 fledglings shown here. The nest tree is right outside an array of chook pens, which appears to be typical behaviour for Eastern Barn Owls. This is on private land and the tree is not visible from Culgoora Road (between Narrabri and Wee Waa).
Michael Dahlem & Vanessa Collins 8/7 #260430
highlightAustralian Bustard
Yellow Rock Road, Raleigh
Update on Raleigh Bustard. Adult male seen today about 1000 hrs where it was seen on 5/7/2021. As previously stated , the bird is on private land but can be readily seen from the road. At the time that we were there, 4 other birders came to see this Bustard, there was no sign of the other bird.
Alan Morris & Clive Meadows 7/7 #260426
Excellent to see 2 Ospreys heading north between Hollis Park and Carriageworks. The birds were low and unmolested by other birds, surprisingly. Local Noisy Miners hysterical, naturally. My first record for Newtown and the 10th raptor on my home list.
Lorne Johnson 7/7 #260420
Tue 6Blue-faced Honeyeater
Just an update on the Blue-faced Honeyeaters. There are two and have been hanging around for several weeks now. Moving throughout the neighbourhood. Seen feeding in flowering Gymea lilies and bathing and drinking from several neighbours backyard pools. Got some nice pics too. eBird checklist
Joel Poyitt 6/7 #260416
Blue-billed Duck [58], Pink-eared Duck [44], Black Kite [24]
Campbell's Swamp Griffith
I was doing a quarterly survey today and was surprised to find the large count for the above species. Whilst they are very common in the swamp, I have never found such large numbers of each before and felt it was worth reporting here. eBird checklist
Max O'Sullivan 6/7 #260414
Square-tailed Kite
Excellent to have a Square-tailed Kite gliding south between Hollis Park and Carriageworks at midday. Noisy Miners, Pied Currawongs and Australian Ravens all rattled by its presence. A terrific inner-west/inner-Sydney record. The first one on eBird.
Lorne Johnson 6/7 #260412
Mon 5highlightAustralian Bustard
Yellow Rock Road, Raleigh
This is a continuation of Karen Smedley's post of 4 July. On Monday 5 July several observers at the same location as previously reported saw TWO Australian Bustards. One was a male (black breast band) and the other was female-plumaged. At least one bird has now been present at the site for six days. The birds are on private land, but can be viewed from the road.
Richard Jordan 6/7 #260413
Beach Stone-curlew
Cathie Creek Estuary - Lake Cathie Foreshore Reserve
A lone Beach Stone-curlew flew in about 2.20pm and stayed about ten minutes before flying off and vanishing beyond the southern headland. (Moderator's Note: Interesting report, there are only two previous reports for Cathie Creek Estuary viz 19/11/2011 & 28/4/2016. AKM)
Steve Mantle 5/7 #260410
Brown Cuckoo-dove
Havilah, N.S.W.
Havilah is a bit south of Mudgee. This bird flew into a window with a not good outcome. Posting because this seems way out of the species range.
Mark Leary reporting for Sue Ann White. 5/7 #260409
Kinchela - Hat Head Rd, 5 km south of Kinchela
A pair of Brolgas have been reported for the past few days, feeding amongst cows on a dairy farm, about 5 km south on Kinchela on the Hat Head Road, just before the road enters the Hat Head National Park. As far as I am aware this is the only pair of Brolgas in the Kempsey and Port Macquarie/Hastings LGAs. They have been reported spasmodically in this location in the past two months. See my poor phone photo! eBird checklist
Alan Morris 5/7 #260407
Sun 4Chestnut-breasted Mannikin
Putta Bucca Wetlands, Mudgee
Saw this single bird in a large flock of Plum-headed Finches. First record of this bird at the wetlands. Wouldn't think they go to far west of here. 190th species for the wetlands. eBird checklist
Mark Leary 4/7 #260404
highlightAustralian Bustard
On-going bird, first reported 29th June, along Yellow Rock Road, Raleigh (30.45581, 153.03018). Found at 9am, approximately 400m from the road along the fare tree line, preening for quite some while. Then walked to the right along the far fence line, gradually getting closer to the road. Eventually came out into the open paddock approximately 100m from the road, where views were excellent in the sunshine. Over the course of 1.5hrs around 8 birders saw the bird (mostly from Bellingen Birders). Unusual for this location being so close to the ocean. eBird checklist
Karen Smedley 4/7 #260403
Freckled Duck, Blue-billed Duck
Fivebough Wetlands. Leeton
Was pleased to find the Freckled Ducks back at the settling ponds at Fivebough this morning along with Blue-bills, Australasian Shovelers, Hardhead and 6 Magpie Geese. Also, both Hoary-headed and Australian Grebes. The Freckleds have been absent since January according to my records.
Max O'Sullivan 4/7 #260401
Sat 3Painted Button-Quail
Crosslands Reserve, Galston
A pair of birds were seen and photographed scratching their platelets in the leaf litter at the entrance to Crosslands Reserve
COLLEEN PORTER 6/7 #260415
Hooded Plover
Minnamurra Inlet
Single bird feeding on flats at low to mid tide on estuary side of Minnamurra Spit in Killalea State Park. Seen on 1st July as well. eBird checklist
Ralph Stadus 4/7 #260400
Pied Oystercatcher,Sacred Kingfishers,Little Egret.
Medowbank Park,Sydney
Recorded my first Pied Oystercatcher in the Mangroves at Medowbank park this morning and a Little Egret which i haven't seen here before also 7 over wintering Sacred Kingfishers including 3 on the same dead branch.
Michael Ronan 3/7 #260395
Fri 2Beach Stone - Curlew
Winda Woppa Reserve--The Anchorage Picnic Area
A pair of curlews that looked nervous & like they were searching for something. I thought they may be young.
Kate Carson 13/7 #260446
highlightBrahminy Kite
Woolooware Wader Lagoon (Metromix Wetland)
An adult plumaged Brahminy Kite was seen circling the two middle islands every few minutes.
Leo Skowronek, Craig Wilson and Jeffrey Chu 2/7 #260391
Thu 1Red-necked avocet
Deeban Spit, Port Hacking
2 red-necked avocets seen roosting at high tide close to the beach before flying over to the roost island used by other shorebirds eBird checklist
Julie Keating 2/7 #260392
Lewin's Rail
Sydney Park
2 birds seen mating on two occasions. Birds then seen allopreening and preening, foraging and feeding. Sensational! The pair were out in the open. Bad mobile footage taken of allopreening, preening and mating. All of this seen at northern end of island pond, close to fence, from 4:45 to 5:10pm. One bird was croaking a little. No kek-kek-kek-kek-kek calls uttered. The Lewin's Rails are resident at SP.
Lorne Johnson 1/7 #260387
highlightSwift Parrot, Little Lorikeet
Warriewood Wetlands
A group of six Swift Parrots were found feeding quietly on lerps in Warriewood Wetlands at 11.30 am today. The location was on the left side of the Swamp Forest Walk from Katoa Close round to Garden Street about 30 metres before the start of the last timber boardwalk at the Garden Street end of the track. There were also several small groups of Little Lorikeets active in the same general area - perhaps 25 individuals in total.
Roger McGovern 1/7 #260386

June 2021
Tue 29highlightAustralian Bustard
Yellow Rock Rd Raleigh NSW
Single mature Male in open dairy paddock. Accompanied by Ibis. Bird seen again at same location 3rd July. (Moderator’s Note: An absolutely remarkable observation at this location. Well done! MR, further to this, Richard Jordan has been able to confirm that the bird was first seen at the site on 2/6/2021 by Michelle Morozumi. AKM) )
Jo-Ann Pierce 3/7 #260396
Satin Bowerbird
Angophora Reserve (Bilgola Heights)
Young male - my first for Angophora Reserve and the Northern Beaches.
Henry Coleman 29/6 #260381
Brahminy Kite
Adamstown / Merewether Golf Course
To my surprise, at approx 1pm, after hearing a commotion of sorts, I stepped outside to observe a pair of adult Brahminy Kites. They appeared to be hawking above the treetops nearby Merewether Golf Course for about 15mins. One individual landed in a Norfolk Island Pine on Lockyer St for a brief moment before resident ravens and magpies flushed it out. The birds then ascended very high up before cruising in a straight southerly direction towards Glenrock State Conservation Area. (Moderator's Note: Brahminy Kites are now regularly seen as far south as the Central Coast and occasionally around Sydney. This is rather atypical habitat/behaviour for the them though. MR).
Gavin Shelley 29/6 #260380
Sun 27highlightEyrean Grassrwen, Bourke's and Blue-winged Parrots
Tibooburra, Milparinka and Cameron Corner
2 week wander thru the above areas We observed Eyrean Grasswren just east of Cameron Corner. Many hundreds of Budgies, Orange Chats, Black and Pied Honeyeaters, Bourke's Parrot (25), Flock Pigeon also in good numbers. Blue-winged Parrots and Red-backed Kingfishers were also present. Sturt National Park is well worth a couple of days poking about.....Country looks great, and ample surface water to sustain good numbers of not often seen birds. Full bird list available. (Moderator's Note: Eyrean Grasswren is on the NSW ORAC Review List, so an URRF will be sought. MR)
Chris. Catt / Janine Bailey 10/7 #260436
Hooded Plover
Mollymook Beach South
Three Hoodies very active feeding on rock shelf at junction with beach .
John Lawes 28/6 #260375
Pacific Gull (immature)
Kendalls Beach Kiama, NSW
Observed a single bird walking along beach in the morning. eBird checklist
Michael Pail 27/6 #260371
Freckled Duck
Central Coast Wetlands (Tuggerah)
Individual loafing with usual waterbird sp. Pretty sure this is the first record for the Central Coast this year which is unsurprising given conditions elsewhere. Also of note were 3 Australasian Shoveler and a Black-necked Stork slightly further north at Wyong.
Andrew Robinson 27/6 #260368
Sat 26highlightGrey Falcon, Hall's Babbler
Fords Bridge, 10 kms east
The Grey Falcon was seen 10 km east of Fords Bridge, and that is 2 years in a row that the bird was recorded in the same area. All four species of Babblers seen, including Hall's Babbler
Chris. Catt and Jannine Bailey 10/7 #260437
Superb Parrot
4 km south of Manduramah
14 birds flying parallel with the road then crossing the road ahead of our vehicle.
Malcolm Stokes 1/7 #260388
Double-banded Plover
Flat Rock (Ballina)
Sighted a single bird feeding on the rocks at the low tide mark. (Moderator's Note: It is generally agreed by observers who frequent Flat Rock regularly that this bird, originally claimed as a Lesser Sand Plover, is in fact a Double-banded Plover. AKM)
Angela Suzanne Powell 26/6 #260366
Common Bronzewing
Rookwood Cemetery
A subadult Common Bronzewing (with cinnamon crown) flushed off the ground in the central tea-tree woodland thicket and obligingly allowed some phone photos. Rare in central Sydney. Also White-napped and White-cheeked Honeyeaters and a Noisy Friarbird in northern woodland.
Dion Hobcroft 26/6 #260364
Fri 25Spangled Drongo
First alerted by an unusual call before spotting a Spangled Drongo at the top of a dead tree limb in the distance. On Private Property in Varroville. A rare bird in the Macarthur Region, this is the second record on ebird for Campbelltown, the last being from 2002. eBird checklist
Timothy Paasila 25/6 #260357
Outside normal range
Early arrival; late departure
Interesting behaviour
Hard to see
Unusual habitat
Uncommon in area
Unusual numbers
Rare vagrant
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