Unahi Road

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Les Feasey
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Unahi Road

Postby Les Feasey » Sat Aug 12, 2017 9:51 am

There were three Little Egret in the farm fields bordering Unahi road yesterday. Those birds added to the now more than 50 Cattle Egret in a separate flock, and the 600-700 Royal Spoonbills also in the fields. The Spoonbill were hunkered down on the fields to avoid the strong winds and showers, and not on their normal roosts in the Macrocarpa by the wharf.
Les Feasey
Opua, Far North
Jim Kirker
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby Jim Kirker » Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:44 am

In 1948 Royal Spoonbills were reported at different places in the North Island and South Island, never more than four birds seen at a time. There is an ebird record of one in June/July this year at deep cove, which looks to be a first for Fiordland. No ebird record yet round the east cape and eastern bay of plenty.
https://notornis.osnz.org.nz/system/fil ... is_2_8.pdf (page 195)
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Les Feasey
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby Les Feasey » Sat Aug 12, 2017 12:05 pm

Hi Jim,
Thanks for that. The Royal Spoonbill certainly seem at home up here. This year the numbers on Parengarenga Shellbank also increased to 134 in this year's census, up from 20 or so last year. These are some of the birds at Unahi.
Cheers,
Les


Spoonbill at Unahi.jpg
Spoonbill at Unahi.jpg (420.1 KiB) Viewed 2424 times
Les Feasey
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Byrd
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby Byrd » Sat Aug 12, 2017 12:35 pm

is there any sort of current estimate of NZ's spoonbill population? NZ Birds Online says only "In 1977 the New Zealand population was estimated at 52 birds. The most recent estimate (in 1996) was 959 birds."

I have no idea where Unahi Road is, but if there were 600-700 in this one place then the NZ-wide total now must surely be far in excess of the 959 estimate of 1996.
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GrahameNZ
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby GrahameNZ » Sat Aug 12, 2017 3:16 pm

This is Unahi Rd
https://www.google.co.nz/maps/place/Una ... 73.2551749
That must be a stunning site 6 - 700 Spoonys.
I'd love to see them all in the air
Grahame
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby Grahame » Sat Aug 12, 2017 3:18 pm

Thanks GrahameNZ, I have been tying to find it.
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GrahameNZ
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby GrahameNZ » Sat Aug 12, 2017 3:24 pm

Hi Grahame
I've been smiling every time I've seen your handle since you joined.
Not many of us with that spelling.
Causes a bit of confusion down here in the Mainland at times.
Happy Birding
maryt
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby maryt » Sun Aug 13, 2017 4:18 pm

Birds NZ members carried out a winter survey of numbers of spoonbill in 2012; the results were published in Southern Bird December 2012, page 7. The total counted was 2360. A colony and nest count was also done by Birds NZ in the 2013/2014 season, published in Birds NZ September 2014, page 12; the study found 19 colonies with 600 nests. In my opinion the marked increase in numbers has probably continued. The spoonbills seem to spend the winter in the northern areas od NZ and breed in the more southern regions; see Schweigman, Cash and Thompson, Notornis,  2014,  Vol.  61:  177-­‐‑187
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Les Feasey
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby Les Feasey » Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:38 pm

Thanks for that, Mary. I’ll ask Colin how I can update nzbirdsonlin.org.nz with the more recent totals. I scanned eBird and in terms of other North Island sites with over 50 birds August - November;
50 Little Waihi (Tim)
56 Miranda (Gillian)
155 Parengarenga (Les)
Unahi Road is one entry into Rangaunu Harbour, which has prolific birdlife. Walker Island, a shellbank in the Harbour, is a summer roosting site for migrating shorebirds. A series of entries on eBird in December 2016 noted, among others:
14 Whimbrel;
2700 Bar-tailed Godwit;
155 Ruddy Turnstone;
350 Red-billed Gull;
70 White-fronted tern;
450 Black Swan;
100 Shag sp;
97 White-faced Heron;
157 Caspian Tern (nesting).

Caspian Tern at Walker Is._.jpg
Caspian Tern at Walker Is._.jpg (531.75 KiB) Viewed 2236 times
Les Feasey
Opua, Far North
Carol
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Re: Unahi Road

Postby Carol » Thu Jan 25, 2018 12:20 pm

Hi today is 25 January 2018 I am sitting at Unahi wharf. There are about 22 spoonbills in the macrocarpa compared to the hundreds we saw in July 2017. Where are they?

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