Bar-tailed godwits (Limosa lapponica
) were counted throughout New Zealand and on the east coast of Australia during the 2019–2020 austral summer, in the first attempt to assess the total population of the subspecies baueri
on the southern hemisphere non-breeding grounds. Survey coverage in New Zealand was nationwide (158 sites surveyed); surveys in Australia covered 314 sites between Great Sandy Strait in southern Queensland, and the Gulf St Vincent in South Australia. Areas north of Great Sandy Strait were either partially counted or were not visited over this survey period. Partial surveys were excluded from the survey results. The total number of godwits counted was 116,446. If allowance is made for an additional ~10,000 birds expected to have been present in northern Queensland (based on previous surveys), the total population of baueri
in New Zealand and Australia would have been about 126,000. The 2019 breeding season was very successful, with the highest recorded number of juvenile birds since 2011 and 2012.