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MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Sun Dec 25, 2016 4:54 pm
by Steve Wood
One bird seen today at high tide 08:00. amongst approximate 1,000 Bar tailed Godwit.
Bird stood out quite well when not roosting...... Small Godwit with straight dark bill.watched for several hours until tide change and then flew of to feed. Will check again tomorrow morning for up date.

There is a Santa after all !

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Sun Dec 25, 2016 4:55 pm
by Steve Wood
Forgot to mention there is a Common Tern there as well .

Steve

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:08 am
by ourspot
Great sighting Steve! Another rare species sighting in what seems like an epic vagrant year for NZ.

I’m going to be heading to the Nelson area tomorrow so hopefully I can get the chance to shoot up to Motueka and have a look for the Dowitcher. I haven’t been here before so I had a look on Google Maps and I see the sandspit is quite long, so was wondering if there was a specific spot along the sandpit that the Godwits roost? And for viewing do you walk along the actual sandpit or can they be viewed from the along the town/port area coastline?

Cheers Scott

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Mon Dec 26, 2016 10:27 am
by andrewcrossland
Yep! Without any inch of doubt whatsoever! I've spent 20 years studying the distribution and ecology of this species in sumatra and these images are the prettiest I've ever seen ! Awesome sighting Steve.

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Mon Dec 26, 2016 11:46 am
by Steve Wood
Hi Scott, Head for the Motueka Golf course and continue from the town end to the end of the road where it turns sharp right hand bend, turn left here to a small carpark area. The spit is just in front of you and you need to cross the small channel, 50+meters.1.5-2hrs before high tide is best. The spit has recently been split into two at the far end by the sea and is now only half available to walk, without negotiating another deep channel further on.
Once on the spit you can't miss the roost. About 1,000 BT Godwits, I whimbrel, and a hand full of Knot.
At the end of the spit there is a good size White fronted Tern colony 500+ pairs easily, and this morning there was also 1 Little Tern and 2 Common Tern.
Good Luck.

Steve

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Tue Dec 27, 2016 4:39 pm
by igor
Great find Steve! I'm hoping to visit on Jan 3, so news from anyone visiting, either positive or negative, over the next week would be greatly appreciated!
Cheers,
Igor

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 3:40 pm
by wghabbott
How deep is the crossing at high tide?

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 9:42 pm
by Steve Wood
Hi Bill, I guess it depends on the height of the tide on the day. best to play it safe.Or you can go the long way around and keep dry.

Visited the site this evening about 8.30 pm with Tim Barnard and the bird was still there.
The bird does look extremely settled and I would be quite surprised if it doesn't stay till the end of the season.

Steve

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:26 pm
by ourspot
Hi Steve. Thanks for the great location info - much appreciated. Unfortunately due to family commitments I've had to leave the region before I got the chance to have a look, tho hopefully I'll get a chance early Jan. I'm sure the info you posted will most useful for anyone else heading out for a look.

Cheers
Scott

Re: MEGA - Asiatic Dowitcher Motueka Spit. Ho.. Ho.. Ho!

Posted: Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:16 am
by Brent Stephenson
Nail it down Steve! ;) I might be making a run for it around 17 Jan!