Saturday, 25 October 2014

RBA - Rare Bird Alert

Sorry for the delay in reporting this interesting record from Maroochy Wetlands Sanctuary at Bli Bli by Birdlife member, Russ Lamb; Large-tailed Nightjar.

Russ describes his sighting;

 I'd taken a visiting Dutch birder to Maroochy Wetlands hoping to see Lewin's Rail, but didn't succeed (far too dry I think). As we were packing-up  the car (which was parked in the  highest park , ie the first available as one enters the carpark) we heard a loud unusual repetitive noise coming from the clump of trees behind the car (ie from the NW corner of the carpark). As I approached to investigate (I was thinking frog at the time!!) the bird emerged at about head-height, flew straight over us, and into sancturary itself (ie between the two buildings). Apart from recognizing it as a nightjar, we saw no identifying marks, didn't get any white on throat or on wings, view was for only about 5 seconds.
         We then heard the "chop chop chop" call coming from the trees behind the building, which was when I recognized the call as Large-tailed. We checked the call against the BOCA calls I have installed on my mobile, confirmed it as LTN, and also then confirmed that the first repetitive call we had heard had also come from the nightjar. We spotlighted the trees immediately behind the buildings and path but couldn't locate the bird. It continued to "chop chop chop" intermitingly, then was last heard further into the forest.

I've checked eBird and BirdData sightings for this species south of Maryborough, results are:
1988 Cooloola NP (BQ outing)
2008  Noosa Heads
2009  Cooloola NP
2011  Rainbow Beach
2012  Inskip Point
2014 (May)  Boonooroo 
There don't appear to be any sightngs recorded from NSW so this could be the southern-most sighting to date.

Regards,                    Russ Lamb

Other good records and / or birds to look out for;

Black -necked Stork - I saw one adjacent to a small pond over the main road from the Park Lakes suburb in Bli Bli. [I've heard subsequently that it has been seen at Park Lakes proper.

Baillon's Crake - still easy to see at Park Lakes
Wandering Whistling Duck  - Park Lakes

Summer migrants - White-throated Needletails are beginning to be seen. Koels, Channel-billed and Brush Cuckoos have all returned. Cicadabirds and Olive-backed Thrushes are all in good voice. 

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