Further to my preliminary report of 2 Feb, re possible sighting of Turquoise Parrots, I can now confirm the ID positively.
Only one male with blue face and red wing patch sighted, with a "spotting scope". But that was clear enough to put ID beyond doubt.
The location is identified on Google Earth as Yerriyong, NSW.
It is just past the Parma Fire Trail (if coming from the west).
On all occasions, we saw the birds within 600 metres of their preferred location - not further away.
|Juvenile male Turquoise Parrot showing some wing colour|
|Turquoise Parrot - a juvenile|
On Saturday afternoon (between 3 and 4 pm) the birds were present in the same place as previously, but they were skittish. They were "hiding" amongst Eucalypt regrowth saplings along the road, and seldom coming out to rest on the powerlines.
On Sunday morning we went back at 7:30 am. We saw a maximum number of 21 birds at any one time, along the powerlines. Small parties kept breaking away from the group, and new "new birds" flying in. They were very active this morning. It is impossible to know exactly how many birds might be in this flock, but we can say there were at least 21.
The birds were seen best in early morning light. They were not very approachable - flying in to nearby re-growth Eucalypt saplings for cover, then returning to the powerlines.
|Turquoise Parrots - Small section of flock on powerlines|
Occasionally they would double back to a location further down the powerlines, probably just to give us exercise - following them. We could see them well, and photograph them somewhat better than on Friday. But they would not allow me to approach within about 100 metres.
|Turquoise Parrots - small section of the flock.|
By 7:45 they were beginning to feed amongst the patches of seeding grasses along the road.
Better photographic equipment is called for, I am afraid.
As the Turquoise Parrot (Neophema pulchella) is listed as Vulnerable on the NSW Threatened Species List, I will report these birds, on the NSW Wildlife Atlas.
Alan has just learnt that the local National Parks office is preparing to "slash" the roadside verge in this area, which would be bad news indeed for the Parrots which are feeding on the low grasses there which are happily seeding at present. Lets hope that move can be delayed for a few weeks at least.