2004 News Snippets
A catch of 26 Grey and Chestnut Teal along with 7 Australian Shelduck were caught at Werribee at the end of December 2004 for testing for Avian flu and to undertake metabolism studies for Melbourne Water as they track what happens when they change management at the site.
Late December 2004, 1,161 Crested Tern chicks were banded at the Nobbies to go with the 1,020 that already had bands.
Hot News for August 2004 was the catch of 191 Bar-tailed Godwits on the 22nd at a new site (Duck Point, Yanakie, Corner Inlet). These were the first catch of this species ever in August (and the second largest catch in Victoria. Also in the catch were 48 red Knot and 6 Great Knot. Due to the heavy weights and lack of active moult of about a quarter of these birds, it is thought they were most likely heading toward New Zealand (which supports a previously unsubstantiated view about these birds moving across the Tasman in September.
The 2003/04 Annual Report was delivered at the VWSG AGM in 2004.
Over 140 active members/participants.
Total waders caught in 2003 was 11,349.
The total included over 2,850 previously banded birds (25%, which compares to an average of 20%).
2003/04 was the 'year of China' as far as recoveries and flag sightings were concerned.
A team at Chong Min Dao, in the mouth of the Yangtze Estuary, near Shanghai caught four Victorian banded birds, a Grey Plover, a Great Knot, a Red Knot and a Sharp-tailed Sandpiper.
Record ages recorded for Sooty Oystercatcher of 23+ years and a Red-necked Stint at 20+ years.
Variable breeding success - Sharp-tailed Sandpipers bonanza (39% juveniles), Red-necked Stint and Curlew Sandpiper were average, but Ruddy Turnstone and Sanderling had poor years.
Late report of a 'double journey recovery' of a Ruddy Turnstone (banded in SA in 1997, captured in Shanghai 5 weeks later and again in SA in 1998.