Capricorn Yellow Chat – (Epthianura crocea macgregori)

Capricorn Yellow Chat
Capricorn Yellow Chat

Australia is home to several species of Chat. 

One of these is the Yellow Chat and throughout Australia three sub-species can be observed. 

The sub-species of Yellow Chat that is located in Central Queensland is known as the Capricorn Yellow Chat. 

Canungra Law

This small bird is endangered and can only be found in a few localities in Central Queensland. 

Male birds when breeding are bright yellow with a black bib. Females are duller in colour without the black bib. 

The habitat of this bird encompasses saltmarsh plains which are subjected to freshwater inundations. Usually, the birds can be seen in pairs or in small groups in the presence of other bird species such as Woodswallows. Knowing the call of this bird is instrumental in locating them. 

Capricornia Yellow Chat populations are most active when good seasons are prevalent. 

When I looked for this bird the first time, I did not see them as the conditions in their environment were dry. However, several months later after significant rainfall, I was lucky to see a fleeting glance of male bird before it disappeared. 

After continuing to search for several days at different locations, I was finally successful in seeing a small group of the birds feeding together. 

The future of this bird is dependent on the co-operation of private landholders, private businesses, local and state governments. 

Good work is being done to maintain the current population and additional land has been added to Curtis Island National Park where a small population is located. 

For anyone wanting to see this bird, persistence is the name of the game and ensure that your timing is when Central Queensland has had good wet seasons. Known sites where the birds have been seen are not always guaranteed to have the birds present. 

Several visits to several sites may be required to finally get a sighting of this elusive bird. When I finally did get views of this unique bird, I felt lucky indeed!