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. We may also consider publishing unusually-plumaged birds (e.g. albinistic/leucistic/melanistic) if they are considered interesting or are uncommonly seen.

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

We support ethical birding .


Moderators' Note

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.

May 2023
Sun 28Australian Spotted Crake
Barton Park South--Landing Lights Wetland
A Spotted Crake, possibly two, seen foraging on exposed mud. Also 3 Brown Quail and a male Scarlet Robin are regularly seen.
Allan Richards and Raz Datta 29/5 #269326
Sat 27Osprey
St Matthews farm reserve, Cromer
Pair of Ospreys have a nest on the light pole closest to the creek. Not seen them here before, at least 2kms to Narrabeen Lake from this point.
Tom Petty 27/5 #269324
highlightSwift Parrot
Clarence Town
Swift Parrot heard flying low overhead. Not much in flower nearby, maybe just passing through.
Graham Turner 27/5 #269323
Thu 25highlightAustralian Bustard
private property 50km NEast of Hay just off Mid Western HWAY
I was alerted by a local farmer to this bird and was only an hour away so went to have a look. Was a single young male bird just feeding quietly beside a farm road. Had only been spotted there that morning.
Warren Chad 26/5 #269314
Mon 22Glossy Black Cockatoos
Fred Caterson Reserve, Castle Hill
A family of 3 Glossy Black Cockatoos (2 males and 1 female) feasting on casuarina seeds at a nature reserve in the middle of the bustling suburb of Castle Hill, Sydney. The trio may be the same group that were observed by birders in December 2022. eBird checklist
Veeraj Sharma 22/5 #269307
highlightSwift Parrot
Rocky Ponds Trail, Brisbane Water National Park
Single Swiftie heard then seen flying over woodland. While I was excitedly celebrating the sighting, a second Swiftie flew a short distance, landing close by before being chased off by a Little Wattlebird. Not a lot in flower besides Banksia ericifolia…. Swifties presumably feeding on lerp. eBird checklist
Nick Carson 22/5 #269306
Pacific Gull
Redhead Park
One juvenile bird seen headed north along coast towards Newcastle from Redhead. eBird checklist
James Bennett 22/5 #269305
Sun 21Plum-headed Finch
Upper Mole River Road, Northern NSW
A large flock of 160 Plum-headed Finches was seen feeding in tall grasses adjacent to the road. The count was most likely an under-estimate as only birds that landed on a fence were counted. I think other small flocks remained in the grass.
David Charley 23/5 #269312
highlightBuller’s Albatross and Shy Albatross
Green Cape Lighthouse
121 Shy Albatross, 15 Buller’s Albatross, 1 Black-browed Albatross, 5 Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross, 2 Giant Petrel (sp), 5 Brown Skuas, 1 Arctic Jaeger (pale morph), 20+ White-fronted Terns, 2 Grey-faced Petrels, 20+ Short-tailed Shearwater and approximately 40 Fluttering Shearwater seen today in a 4 and a half hour visit to this wonderful location.
David Mitford 22/5 #269309
Beautiful Firetail
2 birds feeding in sandstone ridge forest on the se boundary of Wollemi NP, Little Wheeny Creek catchment, Kurrajong. No eBird records for eastern Wollemi and a rare bird in the Hawkesbury. eBird checklist
Eric Finley 22/5 #269304
Pink-eared Duck
Central Coast Wetlands (Tuggerah)
Single Pink-eared Duck feeding in main lagoon with Pacific Black Ducks eBird checklist
David Schuemaker, Graham Nelson, Daniel McKeon 21/5 #269303
Grey-faced Petrel
Long Reef Aquatic Reserve.
Had 19 Grey-faced Petrels in close to Long Reef Point this afternoon just before the sun went down.
Michael Ronan 21/5 #269302
Sat 20Wandering Whistling Ducks
McPhersons Swamp Tuggerah NSW
11 Wandering Whistling ducks swam into shoreline and looked to be settling down to rest or sleep, observed for 30 minutes and left site. I returned approximately 90 minutes later and birds were still there resting up eBird checklist
David Schuemaker 20/5 #269299
Fri 19Topknot Pigeon
Saw approx. 100 Topknots as I drove through Eraring (Point Piper Rd. etc.) yesterday afternoon doing a school run just before 3pm. They were in two main flocks flying in different directions and had obviously been disturbed feeding somewhere, possibly on Lillipilli as they're in fruit in the area. Never seen them in such a number around here before - usually flocks of a dozen to 20 passing through although rarely up to maybe 50.
Paul Schofield 20/5 #269296
Swift Parrot
Mount Annan Botanic Gardens
around 20 Swift parrots seen this morning along side the Plant bank area, feeding on lerps and very settled. the odd flush when the noisy Minors were being aggressive towards them. hopefully number keep rising at the gardens. Others have counted around 20-25 on previous days [Moderators Note: The location of these birds is in a sensitive area of the gardens - please keep to the paths to avoid damage to vegetation and unnecessary disturbances to the parrots].
Paul Heath 19/5 #269295
Thu 18Red-necked Stint, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Red-capped Plovers and White-fronted Chats
Narran Lake NR (Restricted Access
1 x Red-necked Stint, 1 x Sharp-tailed Sandpiper (with amputated leg), 2 x Brolga on receding shoreline of Clear Lake amongst large numbers of Red-capped Plovers (200+) and White-fronted Chats (100+) scattered along shoreline. Observed thru mounted scope.
Patrick Johnston 26/5 #269315
Spiny - cheeked Honeyeater
Owens Walkway - Redhead.
Spotted a Pair of Spiny - cheeked Honeyeater in a Old Banksia Tree. Near a Wooden Bridge at Rehead. This Afternoon. eBird checklist
Gordon Arthur 18/5 #269293
Wed 17Red-backed Kingfisher
Lake Road at railway crossing, Ungarie
Stopped to checkout the honeyeaters feeding in the flowering Mistletoe and very pleasantly surprised to get a Red-backed Kingfisher hunting from the trees on the NE side of the road. eBird checklist
Paul Lynch 20/5 #269298
White-headed Petrel
Long Reef Aquatic Reserve.
Had a classic sighting of a White-headed Petrel this afternoon the bird was heading south less than a hundred meters off the island for about 8 minutes than headed straight out to sea I would of thought that this was quite an early bird for the middle of May.
Michael Ronan. 17/5 #269291
Tue 16Gang-gang Cockatoo
Lithgow Wastewater Treatment Plant
7 birds seen flying west to east over treatment plant
Deryk Engel 16/5 #269289
Sat 13Australian Little Bittern, Black-necked Stork & Brolga
Monkeygar Creek Crossing, Gibson Way, Macquarie Marshes
An adult Australian Little Bittern was photographed on the the barb-wire fence at the Monkeygar Creek Crossing , along the Gibson Way, about 5 kms east of the property Willie Retreat, in the Macquarie Marshes. The Black-necked Stork, previously reported, has been seen again on the nearby The Mole HSD, while a group of 7 Brolgas were seen flying over Willie Retreat a few days previous to this report.
Leanne Hall per Alan Morris 15/5 #269285
Blue Winged Parrot
Menindee far west New South Wales.
Great to find my first Blue-winged Parrot at Menindee far west N S W. it looked like an Immature bird, it was located along a almost dry creek in a Black Box tree. I only sighted one bird.
Geoffrey Stuart Looney 13/5 #269283
highlightSwift Parrot
Stolen Generations Memorial walk at Mt Annan Botanic Garden
4 Swift Parrots seen at the top of a tree above the trail this morning at about 10:30
Allan Richards and Raz Ratta 13/5 #269282
Fri 12Albatross spp. and other tubenoses
Terrigal Pelagic
A solid Autumn trip out of Terrigal that saw; White-faced Storm Petrel (2), Wilson’s Storm Petrel (50+), Black-browed Albatross (9), Campbell Albatross (10), Black-browed type Albatross (12), Shy Albatross (13), Indian Yellow-nosed Albatross (1), Buller’s Albatross (12), Providence Petrel (16) and a single Wedge-tailed and Short-tailed Shearwater.
Andrew Robinson, Dean Purcell and 9 others on board 15/5 #269288
Thu 11Glossy Black Cockatoos
Kincumber Mountain car park Gosford NSW
A pair of Glossy Black Cockatoos Kincumber Mountain Reserve car park, Gosford, feeding on Forest Oak (Allocasuarina torulosa) nuts, observed by myself.However there is a reliable report from Larry Melican of a group of 6 in that location 3 or 4 days earlier. That group comprised 4 adults and two juveniles .
Douglas Hocking 13/5 #269279
highlightPlum-headed Finch.
Menindee N S W 2879
I found this Plum-headed Finch today at Menindee far west N S W. This is the second time I have seen them in Menindee, the last time was after the flood on the Darling River in 2011. The sighting today is also after a flood on the Darling River in the last year. There was possibly 20 to 30 of them here today well outside their normal habitat.
Geoffrey Stuart Looney 11/5 #269277
King Quail
Sydney Airport
A male King Quail was found hiding under some aircraft servicing equipment on the western international apron early this morning. It was relocated to a grassy area away from aircraft movements and promptly disappeared in a matter of seconds into grass that was no more than 3 inches thick!
Nigel Coghlan 11/5 #269276
Musk Lorikeet
Nelson Bay
Not an uncommon species or location but there are thousands upon thousands here at present, outnumbering Rainbows at least 10 to 1. I've been coming here regularly since Feb 21 and I've never seen numbers of ML anywhere near this.
Lewis Benham 11/5 #269275
Wed 10Brown Booby
Tacking Point Lighthouse
One immature Brown Booby was seen flying back and forth close to the lighthouse this morning.(Moderator's Note: first found by an unkown photographer on 9/5/23. AKM) eBird checklist
Ian Kerr 10/5 #269272
Tue 9Malleefowl, Gilberts Whistler, Spotted Nightjar, Mulga Parrot
Woggoon Nature Reserve, 40km Nth of Condobolin
Spent the day in the reserve yesterday checking Malleefowl mounds as part of a local LLS project. There are only about 5 mounds left but one had a feather and freshish scat on it so there are still at least one bird left. Reserve is now totally surrounded by cleared farmland so think their days are numbered. Flushed a Nightjar off the ground next to a mound and had good views of a calling Gilberts Whistler. Mulga Parrots are still there in good numbers but a lot of the Honeyeaters, particularly Yellow-plumed and Brown-headed have not recovered at all since the drought and were very hard to find
warren Chad 10/5 #269271
Kelp Gull
Norah Head
Seen 2 Imm Kelp Gulls late afternoon flying low around main headland and Lighthouse Beach (Moderators' Notes: a juvenile Kelp Gull was also photographed standing on Newcastle Beach on the 8th May ( MR), note that there are 5 previous records for the Central Coast, the last 3/4/2018.AKM).
Luke Ullrich 10/5 #269269
Yellow-faced Honeyeater .
Yuragir NP Coastal Walk Mara Creeknear Brooms Head
Large Flocks of Yellow-faced Honeyeaters flying North . Flocks continued for two hours..
Jeanette Lawson , Pam Kenway, Maureen O"Shea . 10/5 #269267
Sun 7Spotted Quail-Thrush
Great North Walk, Cowan
My son saw a bird he did not recognise but a poor photo of its head reveals it as a Spotted Quail-Thrush.
Phil Murray 8/5 #269261
Black-necked Stork
Central Coast Wetlands (Tuggerah)
Single juvenile Black-necked Stork was in main lagoon feeding where I watched the bird for an hour, I then headed to McPersons Rd Swamp Tuggerah aprox 2minutes away where female Stork and another juvenile were feeding. Watched them for another hour when female flew off westwards while juvenile remained eBird checklist
David Schuemaker 7/5 #269255
Sat 6Black Bitterm
Centennial Park (Sydney)
1 adult seen at Model Yacht Pond; flew from island to reeds on side flanked by Grand Drive. Blackish grey, yellow streak on throat and side of neck obvious on landing before it disappeared from view quickly in the reeds. Another highlight was Mistletoebird which was unusual locally although probably not birdline worthy. eBird checklist
Frank Hemmings 7/5 #269252
Yellow-billed Spoonbill
Central Coast Wetlands (Tuggerah)
A single Yellow-billed Spoonbill was in the dairy Swamp at the Central Coast Wetlands Tuggerah feeding with Royal Spoonbills. I observed the bird for approximately an hour before scared off by a White-bellied Sea-eagle and flew off in a north easterly direction (Moderator's Note: this is the first Central Coast Region report for some months. AKM) eBird checklist
David Schuemaker 6/5 #269249
Glossy Black-Cockatoo, Superb Lyrebird
Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park--Bobbin Head
Prolonged close views of a pair of feeding Glossy Black-Cockatoos and a Lyrebird mid-afternoon at the start of the Warrimoo Track just beyond the marina.
Iain Blake 6/5 #269248
Australian Shelduck
Pitt Town Lagoon
On a Birding NSW outing we saw a female Australian Shelduck, several Pink-eared Duck and Australasian Shovelers.
Trevor Waller 6/5 #269247
Fri 5Black Swan
Narrabeen Lake off Wakehurst Parkway
I saw a group of 66 black swans on Narrabeen lake this afternoon (5/5/2023), the most I have ever seen. They were near the shore in an area 100 meters or so west of the footbridge that runs alongside the Wakehurst parkway. We moved to the area in 1998 then to Hong Kong in 2006 and I never saw a black swan on the lake during that time. I had heard that they frequented the lake in earlier times but it was only when we returned in 2011 that I first had occasional sightings of one or two swans. Thus, the numbers have increased dramatically in more recent years.
Michael Kelly 8/5 #269264
Australian Crake
Stingaree Point Rd., Dora Creek
Had one run across the road in front of me this afternoon as I was driving out to the point around 4pm. Had a good look at it as it flushed very close to the bus I was driving.
Paul Schofield 6/5 #269245
highlightSwift Parrot
Werakata State Conservation Area
At least 2 Swift Parrots heard making their warbling whistle this morning from the creekline off Boundary Trail around (-32.8819596, 151.3267352). I didn’t manage to locate them afterwards and there did not appear to be much lerp (and no blossom) in that particular spot.
Tim Paasila 5/5 #269243
Thu 4highlightAustralian Bustard
Chat Alley
Lone bird landed in long grass in an open field. Other side of road had a large number of cattle in it. Bird landed and with head erect walked through grass. Seen for 5-8 minutes until far away. we were on the road at the cattle grid. Bird often looked upwards. There were a few raptors around the area. (Moderator's Note: A remarkable record as there are virtually no recent records from the Lachlan River catchment and an extremely rare bird on the Cobar Peneplain. A great sighting! MR). eBird checklist
Chris Munson 4/5 #269240
highlightSwift Parrot
Basin Track Kuring-Gai NP
1 km down the track saw and heard x4 individuals . Time 8am . Lot of Bloodwood in flower throughout the park.
Harry O'Donovan 4/5 #269239
Wed 3Darters
Narrabeen Lake
On May 3 I saw 2 Darters flying together before one landed in a tree just near me on the southeastern corner of Narrabeen lake near Cromer. The second one returned a short while later and I realised they were an adult and a juvenile. The adult started feeding the juvenile, and its slender head disappeared inside the beak of the adult as it fed. The adult then flew off, leaving the juvenile by itself in the tree, Rare visitor to Narrabeen Lakes.
Michael Kelly 8/5 #269265
Rose-crowned Fruit Dove
Found dead on the road in the middle of Currarong (northern peninsula of Jervis Bay). It’s a good time to be looking for this species or at least have it on your birding radar as last seasons young disperse. (Moderator's Note: An injured Superb Fruit-Dove was picked yesterday in Wollongong as well. Fruit-Doves are definitely on the move right now. MR).
Tracey and Rory Deavin 3/5 #269234
Tue 2highlightSwift Parrot
724 Brooms Head Rd Gulmarrad NSW 2463
Single birds and one group of 8 seen in 1st week in May . Eucalypts flowering profusely for that week with many lorikeets eBird checklist
Jo Wieneke 6/5 #269246
Wandering Whistling Duck
Port Macquarie STW
A visit to the Port Macquarie STW to check out the Wandering Whistling Duck there and my count was 402, although on 29 /4/2023, Tony Morton counted 460. This is the highest count for Wandering Whistling Ducks at this site and possibly for the whole of the Hastings/Macleay Valleys Region, usually the average count, if they are present , is about 25 birds at the STW, with smaller numbers elsewhere in the wetlands of the two Valleys. eBird checklist
Alan Morris 4/5 #269238
White-bellied Sea-Eagle
Swan Lake, Cudmirrah
I’m not sure if the sighting this morning is of note. But I observed 6 White-bellied Sea-Eagle’s diving and swooping at one another for 10 minutes above Swan Lake, Cudmirrah, before a pair continued flying south and I lost sight of the others. These birds are very common in the area but I’ve not witnessed that number all together before. (Moderator's Note: It is not that unusual to get 6 together at this time of the year as breeding pairs would be determining the boundaries of their territories at the moment as the breeding season is about to start. However It is a great experience to see 6 adults in the air together!.AKM)
Sean Grogan 2/5 #269230
Mon 1Powerful Owl
Pindari Park, North Ryde
SIngle owl heard calling from 11pm onwards from the tall eucalypts in the park. First time hearing one in the area, although I've seen some in Lane Cove National Park, a couple of kilometres away.
Jacob Starling 4/5 #269236

April 2023
Sun 30Coastal Emu
Palmers Island, 2 km east of Pacific Hwy towards Yamba
Single dark juvenile Emu
Bob Moffatt 30/4 #269226
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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