Friday, June 28, 2013

Recurvirostra novaehollandiae

The word got around a day or two ago that some Red-necked Avocets had discovered the flooded paddocks at the back of the RAAF Base east of Sale. I don’t recall sighting this endemic wader before and their presence in our district is pretty unusual, so I snuck away from spraying the greens and headed over to the site.

Closely related to the stilt, which we do tick fairly often in these parts, the avocet uses its dramatically upturned bill to sweep the water rather than the mud for small aquatic life.

The heading of today’s entry of course is the scientific name for this species. Although I usually tend to steer away from such ‘technical matters’ here, I found it interesting that I could understand the meaning for once – ‘a curved billed bird from Australia’!

Thanks for ‘the heads up’ Val – now, back to the spraying.


  1. Peter - thought it worth mentioning that I reported 675 Red-necked Avocets to Birdline Vic on 30th March 2013 at Jones Bay near Bairnsdale. Up to around 30 birds of this species were regularly seen at Jones Bay over the past couple of years that I have been checking this location. The unusually large number (675) was determined by counting birds on enlarged photos on the computer which achieved a reasonable level of accuracy compared with methods such as counting in groups of 10 etc. In addition there were about 30 Black-winged and 30 Banded Stilts with the Avocets. The majority of the Avocets have moved on however there are still a few around.

  2. G'day JH,
    Yep, I realised you 'BLEGers' had some sightings of recent times. Pretty rare for us 'west enders' though - nice to see them.