Birds

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Introduction

The ELZ (Environmental Living Zone) has a variety of habitats and a correspondingly wide variety of birds, some resident, some annual migrants and others varying from occasional visitors to rare vagrants. These include the threatened Powerful Owl and other species that are rarely found so close to Melbourne such as Spotted Quail-thrush, White-throated Nightjar, Spotless Crake, Olive Whistler, Red-browed Treecreeper and Fuscous and Yellow-Tufted Honeyeaters.

By observing and recording of the birds in the ELZ over the last 20 or more years, BICA has built a reliable database which gives a clear indication of the status of each of the birds recorded.

There are a number of keen birders in the ELZ who regularly attend the monthly Bird Survey Walk. This activity is open to all, caters for all levels of experience and is a great way to improve one’s birding skills. See BICA Bird Survey Walks for information on these bird walks. See BICA Bird Survey Record for the cumulative record of our surveys over the last 30 years.

The return of the Superb Lyrebird to the ELZ, after a 40 year absence, is indeed exciting. There have been a large number of sightings since 2000. These accounts can be found here; Superb Lyrebird Records 

Please pass on any observation records to Frank Pierce at Ph 03 9712 0237 or email: jmandfp@bigpond.com

Identification Assistance

To help get you started or to hone your skills on a few of our common bird groups, here are some articles from previous BICA Newsletters.

    • Getting Familiar – Is a general information article to birding in the Bend of Islands. The table in this article shows a list from the most commonly observed to the less common species
    • Spring Arrivals – This list will help you keep track of some of our migratory species i.e., those that only visit during the warmer months
    • The Thornbill Species – Thornbills are small brownish bush birds and for the beginner, it is often hard to determine which species of Thornbill you are looking at. This article gives a simple key to identification of the Thornbills that have been recorded in the Bend of Islands
    • Red Breasted Robins – This article helps sort out the five species of red breasted robins that occur in the Bend of Islands
    • Cuckoos – This is a guide to Cuckoos in the Bend of Islands
    • Brown Hawks – The Brown Goshawk and Collared Sparrowhawk are similar birds that can be hard to determine. This article gives a number of ways in which these two brown hawks can be distinguished from each other
    • Superb Lyrebird – A relatively recent arrival in the Bend of Islands after a 40 year absence
    • ELZ Bird Recorder – Here is a field checklist that can be printed and used in your record taking
    • ELZ Annual Bird Recorder – The monthly checklist for recording birds on a monthly basis so annual patterns can be recorded.
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