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Historical and seasonal changes in the community of forest birds at Longneck Lagoon Nature Reserve, Scheyville, New South Wales


Observations dating back to 1937, banding data accumulated from 1965 to 1994 and census data collected from 1992 to 1995 have been used to show the changes in a community of forest birds at Longneck Lagoon Nature Reserve on an historical and seasonal level. Many resident species have disappeared from the site. These include Diamond Firetail, Zebra Finch, Hooded Robin, Red-capped Robin, Scarlet Robin, Flame Robin and Black-eared Cuckoo. Other species have declined markedly (Speckled Warbler, Weebill, Brown Treecreeper, Black-chinned Honeyeater, Jacky Winter and Fuscous Honeyeater) while some species have increased in numbers (Brown Thornbill, Superb Fairy-wren and Red-browed Finch). New additions to the community include Spotted Turtle-Dove, Red-whiskered Bulbul, Common Blackbird, Common Myna, Common Starling and House Sparrow, but these have not as yet made an observable impact on the proportions of native species within the community. Seasonal fluctuations in the community are quite marked with up to 34 non-resident species visiting the site with the Rose Robin being the only exclusively winter visitor. The only recorded movement greater than 2 km from the site, was that of a Sacred Kingfisher that travelled to central eastern Queensland. Interaction between the Brown and White-throated Treecreepers as well as the three species of finch (Red-browed Finch, Diamond Firetail and Double-barred Finch) is examined in light of their proportional representation of the resident community. Natural and human induced changes at the site and their effects on the decline and demise of species are also examined.

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