I saw a total of 32 species of birds. The clear and unambiguous winner was the Australian Magpie, which I recorded on 99 of my 100 walks. Other birds that achieved a high distinction were Rainbow Lorikeet, Red Wattlebird and Common Myna (all on 96%), Spotted Dove (95%) and Noisy Miner (91%). I'm delighted that the magpie won, and I suppose that there's nothing wrong with a Red Wattlebird. The less said about the other winners the better.
|Galah - just 6 sightings during 100 walks|
Next came the Little Wattlebird on 33 (19 heard), Welcome Swallow (29%), Common Starling (28%, mainly north), Feral and Crested Pigeon (both 23, the latter mainly south) and (my very favourite bird) the Willie Wagtail at 22, exclusively on north walks.
If I was disappointed at the low number of records for the Magpie-lark, I was delighted to see Sulphur-crested Cockatoos at 18 (17 of them north). Cockies are not an every day occurrence in this part of suburban Melbourne.
I saw Eastern Rosellas on 8 occasions and Galahs on 6. Long-billed Corellas were recorded 5 times. I saw Red-rumped Parrots three times (all north walks) and Pacific Black Ducks, Masked Lapwings and Silver Gulls just twice. White-plumed Honeyeaters, Australian Ravens, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrikes, White Ibis and Musk Lorikeets were all recorded just once.
I do wish I'd kept these records in years gone by. My memory is that we had greater diversity before the Noisy Miners moved in, but alas, that remark is now just anecdotal.
I'm hoping that when I have accumulated more data, I will be able to detect seasonal movements. If asked, I'd have said that the butcherbird was more vocal in winter, but my records do not support this at the moment.
Whether or not I am gathering any useful information, there is no doubt that I am making my morning walk far more interesting and that's a good thing.