Feb 7: “You still haven’t seen a Golden Whistler?”

I was showing James Watson the eBird alert system the other day, and he couldn’t believe I still needed Golden Whistler for the year, along with a number of other fairly common species like Scarlet Honeyeater, Spotted Pardalote, Forest Kingfisher etc. It’s true, I have foregone amassing these sorts of species to focus on chasing the trickier birds. But this morning, as I tramped around Mookin-Bah for the third time with not a sniff of Black Bittern I was bemoaning the repetition and slow advancement in my year list birding. Using the target species feature in eBird, here are the top 20 species I still need for the year list, along with the % of lists that each species has been seen on. For example, I still need Scarlet Honeyeater, which is present on 13.5% of all complete eBird lists for the Brisbane area. I only need 16 “1%” birds – those have been seen on more than 1% of eBird lists, but there are some quite common species in there.

 Number Species % lists
1 Scarlet Honeyeater Myzomela sanguinolenta 13.52121
2 Golden Whistler Pachycephala pectoralis 12.71174
3 Spotted Pardalote Pardalotus punctatus 5.65133
4 Forest Kingfisher Todiramphus macleayii 5.25034
5 Rose Robin Petroica rosea 3.45525
6 Varied Sittella Daphoenositta chrysoptera 2.04992
7 Azure Kingfisher Ceyx azureus 1.87003
8 White-naped Honeyeater Melithreptus lunatus 1.6939
9 White-bellied Cuckooshrike Coracina papuensis 1.6077
10 Nankeen Kestrel Falco cenchroides 1.54774
11 Collared Sparrowhawk Accipiter cirrocephalus 1.37536
12 Black Kite Milvus migrans 1.35662
13 White-winged Triller Lalage tricolor 1.34912
14 Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo Calyptorhynchus funereus 1.31539
15 Restless Flycatcher Myiagra inquieta 1.21046
16 Brown Falcon Falco berigora 1.14675
17 Pacific Emerald Dove Chalcophaps longirostris 0.95938
18 Baillon’s Crake Zapornia pusilla 0.93689
19 Swamp Harrier Circus approximans 0.84695
20 Cotton Pygmy-Goose Nettapus coromandelianus 0.83945

Jane Turnbull and Margaret Robertson had three Painted Buttonquails today at Anstead. I’m not sure exactly where the birds were, and I probably don’t have enough time to search tomorrow morning. I’ve got Friday off work so might go then, or at the weekend.

For tomorrow, what else can I do but search a fourth time for Black Bittern? OK, don’t answer that.

With no year ticks today, my year list at the end of the day remained on 222 species. I spent 1 hour 14 minutes birding, walked 2.17 km and drove 20.2 km.