I have had some response to comments about this issue - and thanks, Shane,
for pointing out that education is an important key to preventing
disturbance, as well as to being aware of disturbance by others.
Bushwalkers and birders may well come across fairly remote or off-the-track
Peregrine breeding sites that could be at risk if the location is broadcast;
but if there are indications of human disturbance, an appropriate authority
(such as Vic Hurley at DNRE) should be notified.
Most recreational users will behave responsibly when adequately informed
about use of areas and times when birds are vulnerable. However, there are
a few people who are not deterred by ethical or legal considerations, whose
activities range from casual vandalism to systematic theft for profit. The
impacts vary according to species and other variables, but can have serious
effects on some populations, especially of some rarer parrot and raptor species.
By not publicising the majority of nesting locations of these birds, and by
using those that are well-known (generally those closest to human habitation
and activity) for public education, we should minimise disturbance and
damage at the more casual and ignorant end of the human impact range. This
is much harder to achieve at the 'economic' end. The people involved are
both more motivated and more knowledgeable; controlling and minimising
environmental impact there is complicated, logistically and politically.
However, that is another story.
RAOU Conservation & Liaison,
Australian Bird Research Centre,
415 Riversdale Road,
Hawthorn East, VIC 3123, Australia.
Tel: +61 3 9882 2622. Fax: +61 3 9882 2677.
The Virtual Emu: http://www.vicnet.net.au/~raou/raou.html