More Water Birds

Family Charadriidae

Black-fronted Dotterel

Elseyornis melanops

Black-fronted Dotterels are seen most often at places like Jerrabombera Wetlands and river edges, where they forage over bare mud, sand and gravel. There are four records in the survey.

Black-fronted Dotterel Elseyornis melanops

Family Charadriidae

Masked Lapwing

Vanellus miles

Masked Lapwings are large plovers with yellow fleshy wattles on their faces. They live in pairs or small groups, generally near water, on low-lying pastures, grasslands, golf courses and playing fields. They lay their eggs directly on the ground in grassy areas and will vigorously defend eggs and dependent young.

Survey numbers fluctuate, but are marginally higher in spring than winter, with some increase in numbers from 1982 to 1994. Breeding records are from sites near grassland areas, mostly in late August to late October. One dependent young was recorded from early January. R=42. BR=51.

Masked Lapwing Vanellus miles

 Family Scolopacidae

Latham’s Snipe

Gallinago hardwickii

Latham’s Snipe is a migratory wader that breeds in Japan and migrates to the east and west coast of Australia during our summer months. In the ACT it is observed mainly at Jerrabomberra Wetlands, but there are many sightings around Lake Burley Griffin and more widely where there is suitable vegetation around bodies of shallow water or mud flats. They are shy and wary, and when disturbed they explode from cover, flying swiftly and constantly changing direction before dropping to cover again. There are three records in the survey from Ngunnawal, Curtin and Murrumbateman.

Latham’s Snipe Gallinago hardwickii

 Family Laridae

Silver Gull

Chroicocephalus novaehollandiae

Silver Gulls are generally recorded in flocks flying high over suburbs close to Canberra’s urban lakes. There are populations on Lakes Burley Griffin and Ginninderra. They are common visitors to refuse tips.

Numbers are much higher during winter than at other times. There are very few records from the south side of town and almost all of these are scattered. All records of very large numbers are from the north side of town. R=91.

Silver Gull Chroicocephalus novaehollandiae