Autumn Survey results - thats a lot of birds!

Our Autumn survey stats are in and wow - a whopping 31621 birds were seen throughout the months of March and April coming in from 492 surveys and covering a total of 213 species.

 

Those big, bossy flocking parrots were the most numerous birds recorded throughout the surveys with 6008 Little Corellas and 4582 Rainbow Lorikeets dominating the count totals. When we look though at reporting rates (that is - the percentage of surveys that a species shows up in), Rainbow Lorikeets once again took out the no. 1 position, showing up in a massive 62% of surveys.

 

 

The Top 10 birds by reporting rate were:

Species

Reporting Rate (% of surveys)

Count

Rainbow Lorikeet

62.24

4582

Noisy Miner

54.49

1610

Australian Magpie

48.78

1162

Pied Currawong

44.29

1430

Magpie-lark

44.08

535

Crested Pigeon

40.41

1048

Little Corella

26.73

6008

Pied Butcherbird

24.49

216

Willie Wagtail

22.24

213

Blue-faced Honeyeater

22.04

373

We are used to seeing a top 10 list like this - these are the typical dominant urban birds who visit most gardens on a daily basis. However, if we look down the list, there were some really exciting sightings this Autumn. There were 6 sightings of Swift Parrots - one of only 2 parrots (Orange-bellied Parrots being the other) who migrate from their breeding grounds in Tasmania to open box–ironbark forests of the Australian mainland. This can include urban parks throughout Victoria and into eastern NSW. There were also some other migratory birds spotted. Autumn is a fabulous time to see a suite of migrating honeyeaters (particularly along the east coast) and insectivores. Yellow-faced Honeyeaters are the most common of these and 6% of our surveys recorded them over these last 2 months (for a total count of 273). Scarlet Honeyeaters (2.45% and 220 individuals - so not a lot of surveys, but good sized flocks), Rainbow Bee-eaters (3.5% and 84 individuals - they are a bird that moves in smaller groups or individually) and Silvereyes (4.7% of surveys and 181 individuals) were also on the move. WA had a significant portion of those 181 Silvereyes - they were not only restricted to the east coast. It was also amazing to see Carnaby's Black-Cockatoos showing up in surveys in WA with 81 counted. Tree Martin's though were the most numerous WA bird recorded, with 168 individuals. In the NT though Torresian Crows loomed large and were by far and away the most common bird counted.

 

So the top 10 list does give us a good picture of the 'status quo' but its those less common birds - the threatened, the small and the unusual which it is so important to track. So be sure to keep sending in your surveys to us so we can build a stronger picture about what our backyard birds are doing all year round. The Winter surveys are open in June and July so grab a hot drink and a soft blanket and get surveying! Details are found here.

 and @UrbanBirdsOz  @birdsinbackyards
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