Working for birds in Africa

Records of migrants and amendments to the status of exotics on Mauritius in 1989-93

p 26-35

Mauritius, in the tropical south-west Indian Ocean, formerly had a rich native community of breeding land- and waterbirds, of which a small number survive. The remainder of the Mauritian avifauna is composed of exotics and non-breeding visitors, of which little has been published. This note summarises all observations of non-breeding visitors and selected observations of exotics where they add to existing documentation, from a four-year period of residence on Mauritius in 1989-93. Data are provided on 38 species, of which six (Shy Albatross Thalassarche cauta, Flesh-footed Shearwater Puffinus carneipes, Mallard Anas platyrhynchos, Subantarctic Skua Catharacta antarctica, Lesser Crested Tern Sterna bengalensis and White-winged Tern Chlidonias leucopterus} are additions to the most recent island checklist by Dowsett (1993), and two (South Polar Skua Catharacta maccormicki and Java Sparrow Padda oryzivora} oshould be deleted from it. A comprehensive review of the status of migrants and vagrants on Mauritius, compiling and verifying all observations by the many visiting ornithologists, would be a worthwhile but large task.

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