Birdlife Victoria 2013 Twitchathon results

Hi birders, Here are the results from the Birdlife Victoria Twitchathon this past weekend. This year we had four teams in the 24-hour event and four teams in the 8-hour competition, despite the fact that there was considerable interest in the Big Sit, unfortunately no teams ended up registering for this event. Additionally, this was the first year that we had fully-online team registration and sponsorship – all in all, it worked reasonably well, although I think we need to figure out how to make it a little easier (especially the team registration). Anyway, onto the part that we’re all interested in, the results. Firstly, the 24-hour competition: The winners of the 24-hour competition were the Tick-tock Twins (Paul Rose and Sean Fitzgerald) with a total of 209 species seen, the first time they have broken the 200-species barrier. Best bird was Sooty Owl – well, three of them! Biggest dip was Tawny Frogmouth. Congratulations Tick Tock Twins! Runners-up were long-time Twitchathon competitors, the Common Loudmouths (Greg Hunt, Paul Kelly, Philip Jackson and Russell Thomson), with 174 species. The Loudmouths have, for many years, been 8-hour competitors, so attempting the 24-hour event and scoring that many birds was a great result. Best bird was Crimson Chat at Yapeet, a great bird for Victoria generally, and for the Twitchathon in particular. Biggest dip was Zebra Finch. Next was the Ruff Rollers (Brett Whitfield, Daniel Pendavingh and Bob Dawson) with 166 species seen. Ruth and I usually bump into these guys at Goschen, which seems to be the starting point for both teams! Best bird was Little Tern and biggest dip was Hardhead. Finally was first-time competitors, the Plover United Party (Dan Eyles, Chris Timewell, Warren Tomlinson and Alexander Holmes) with 127 species. Best bird was Cicadabird at Terrick Terrick of all places! Biggest dip was Wedge-tailed Eagle. Congratulations on a good effort in your first competition! Interestingly the Plovers started in Mildura and ended in Castlemaine, so perhaps not a route that could generate the highest number of species, but they had some remarkable candidates for best bird in addition to the Cicadabird they settled on – Painted Honeyeater at Muckleford, Black-eared Cuckoo and White-browed Treecreeper at Yarara. In the 8-hour competition the winners were the Robin Rednecks with the remarkable tally of 166 species! This is a new record for the 8-hour competition, with the previous record of 156 species recorded by the Common Diving Petrolheads in 2003. Even more remarkable, the Robin Rednecks now hold BOTH the 8-hour and 24-hour records (they set the 24-hour competition record in 2011 with a tally of 225 species). Best bird was Square-tailed Kite (I don’t recall seeing this bird in Victorian Twitchathon lists in previous years) and biggest dip was Zebra Finch. The Rednecks spent all of their time in northern and central Victoria, not coming to the Western Treatment Plant, so that makes their total even more remarkable. Runners-up in the 8-hour event were long-time 8-hour competitors the Norwegian Blues (Jack Krohn and George Pergaminelis) with 145 species – not quite as high as their 2011 tally of 149 but a great result nonetheless. Best bird was Arctic Jaeger at the Western Treatment plant and biggest dip was Black-shouldered Kite, despite spending hours at the Western Treatment Plant! Next was the Oriental Prats (Rohan Bilney, Lucas Bluff, Aileen Collyer and Tamara Leitch) with a total of 137 species. Best bird was Osprey – yet another great bird for Victoria, and biggest dip was Golden-headed Cisticola. Finally in the 8-hour event were the Wallace Wanderers (Fiona and Darren Wallace and the two keen young birders, Amber – 12 years and Jaxen – 7 years) with a total of 75 species seen. Best bird was Cape Barren Goose and biggest dip was King Parrot – a really great effort and hopefully a signal to other families considering entering that not only is it possible but a Twitchathon can be a great deal of fun for the entire family! Unfortunately this year Ruth and I (the Gang Gang Gang) were unable to participate and had to withdraw at the last minute. I have an unfortunate habit of severely injuring myself whilst on holiday, and this trip was no exception with me twisting my leg and ankle and tearing ligaments. Hopefully next year. Well done to all teams that participated and thanks for all your efforts with raising sponsorship money – it will all be put to good causes, supporting advanced tertiary students studying Victorian-oriented, bird-related topics and projects at university. Paul Dodd Birdlife Victoria Regional Group – Twitchathon Coordinator =============================== To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send the message: unsubscribe (in the body of the message, with no Subject line) to: ===============================

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