The Osprey tiltrotor aircraft that visited was identified as 168285 / YZ-13 and flew down to Rocky direct from Townsville.
It then departed to the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA) but returned to the DSU at Rockhampton a little while later to refuel.
168285 / YZ-13 then departed back to Townsville. It was heard to be using the radio callsign of "Skytrain 12" during all of its flights.
Late on Monday 27 May, another USMC Osprey was noted arriving into Townsville meaning that there are not five parked at Townsville. Their deployment to the region is believed to be in support of the joint Military Exercise Southern Jackaroo which is one of three Exercises seemingly currently underway within the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA).
UPDATE! One of the Ospreys was noted departing to Mount Isa and Darwin on Tuesday 28 May. This leaves four still at Townsville.
As we've mentioned previously, the Ospreys are of the Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 363 (VMM-363) ‘Lucky Red Lions’ which have been deployed to Darwin recently as a part of the 8th Marine Rotational Force Darwin (MRF-D). Several MV-22B Ospreys, along with Bell UH/AH-1 helicopters, arrived in Darwin via ship before being flown the short distance to RAAF Base Darwin.
Sincere thanks to local plane spotter Daniel B for taking the time to capture and send through these great photos and video!
All photos and video taken by Daniel Bishop ©