Natural history

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"American Avoset", native name "Antiquatich"

Artist: Port Jackson Painter
Created: [between 1788 and 1797]
Dimensions: 20.3 x 14.6 cm
Reference: Watling Drawing - no. 335


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Bird in profile, facing to the right, its neck bent so that its bill is pointing downwards. It is depicted standing on a pale yellow outcrop overlaid with grey and black serpentine lines and surrounded by a narrow strip of water, against a plain background. The bird's head and neck are red-brown, the underparts and top of the back are white, and the wing is black with a white stripe. The legs are pink with black spots. The drawing is framed by a pencil border and annotated in ink and pencil.


hide notes

  • Port Jackson Painter]
  • The drawing is annotated in ink at bottom left "Native name Antiquatich".
  • The drawing is unsigned and undated.
  • The drawing is inscribed in ink at top right with the number "266.". This refers to the catalogue list compiled by John Latham c. 1801 which was acquired with the drawings, and is filed with them at the end of the Watling Drawings series.
  • The drawing is annotated in pencil at top "American Avoset. Syn 5. 295.". This has been copied in ink at lower left "American Avoset. Latham Syn 5. p. 295. Pl 92.". The page reference is to Latham's General Synopsis of Birds (1781-85).
  • This bird was more recently identified as the Red-necked Avocet, Recurvirostra novaehollandiae in Hindwood K. A. (1970).
  • The author of this catalogue record is Suzanne Stenning.
  • By permission of the trustees of the Natural History Museum (London)
  • Two sets of transparencies held in the Natural History Museum (London) Zoology Library and Picture Library: Picture Library reference number 12335
  • James Lee of Kensington : purchased ; 1902
  • Data sheet available.
  • Latham, John. A General Synopsis of Birds. London: Benjamin White, 1781-85.
  • Hindwood K. A. 'The "Watling" drawings with incidental notes on the "Lambert" and the "Latham" drawings', Proceedings of the Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales for the years 1968-69 (1970).
  • This drawing is reproduced in Wheeler, A. and Smith, B, The Art of the First Fleet and other early Australian Drawings. New Haven and London, Yale University Press, 1988. (Plate 209b, p. 196).