Eremaea Birdlines
Interesting and unusual bird observations

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Reports published in the past 30 hours.

March 2018
Fri 9highlightBlack-tailed Gull
Eastern end of Hartley St, Cairns, FNQ
At about 9:45am on Friday of last week, I was fortunate enough to see a single Black-tailed Gull fly directly over me at about 50mtrs above ground. It came towards me from the east, continuing directly overhead, and then followed the same deliberate westward course directly above Hartley St. I tried to follow the gull in my car but unfortunately lost it. This gull was either a late 2nd year non-breeding immature, or an adult non-breeding. It had a clean white tail with a neat and thick black sub-terminal band, the head, entire underparts and underwings were clean white, except for dark wingtips. For those with access to HANZAB, see plate 29, opp p.480, Vol. 3. What I saw most resembled birds #2 and #5 on this plate. Because it flew directly overhead & did not change course at all as it flew away from me, it was impossible to see the upperside of the nape/collar. Terry Reis and I found and photographed an imm Black-tailed Gull in Cairns on 01/04/13, the only other record of this species in this region that I am aware of.
Martin Cachard (Solar Whisper Wildlife Cruises) 12/3 #233797

February 2018
Tue 27highlightOriental Reed-Warbler
Daintree Gateway Carpark, Cape Tribulation Rd, Lower Daintree, FNQ
I have found an Oriental Reed-Warbler in a weedy sugar cane crop bordering the above location, and the bird appears to be without company. I first found it on 12/02/18 when I heard it singing its quiet (compared to Aust Reed-Warbler) & unique song sporadically for about 45 mins early that afternoon. Despite its location being within earshot and just 40 mtrs or so from my outdoor office, I hadn't heard it again until a few days ago on 27/02/18, some 2 weeks later. Again this bird called on and off, and quietly, for about the same length of time. I was glad to discover that it was still present, and what really amazed me was that it was singing from pretty much the exact same spot as previously. This time I managed to get a rough but very clear voice recording of the song. At neither time did it utter any contact calls. I have absolutely no doubt whatsoever that it is DEFINITELY an Oriental Reed-Warbler - I was certain of this the first time I heard itt too. So far it hasn't shown itself, but I am not about to go clambering through the crop and disturbing it, just for the sake of actually seeing it - and especially when in all likelihood, any diagnostic throat & breast streaking that may/may not have been present on this individual, has quite possibly worn away by now anyway. At no time was any playback used to incite this bird to sing, or to reveal its presence... (see Birdline Nth Qld dates 12/02/18 and 27/02/18, and Birding-Aus).
Martin Cachard (Solar Whisper Wildlife Cruises) 2/3 #233704
Fri 23Oriental Plover
Norfolk Island Airport runway
Sighted this bird among the large flock of PGP's and Ruddy Turnstones this morning.
Hedley and Irena Earl 23/2 #233640
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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