Princess Parrots

To: Tony Russell <>, Birds <>
Subject: Princess Parrots
From: Tim Dolby <>
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 2010 06:17:35 +0000
I think you're being a little harsh Tony.

I think the cost is reasonable for a chance to see such an iconic and hard to 
find species. It was not that long ago that Mike Carter resorted to drinking 
radiator water when his vehicle expired on the Canning Stock Route as he went 
in search of Princess Parrot. There are many species of birds that are best 
seen with the local assistance of a guide / bird guide, with this cost not 
dissimilar from the costs charged by birding tours.

The money also provides valuable financial assistance to the traditional land 
owners. Many conservation / birding organisations recognize the importance of 
establishing positive relationships with local and indigenous people. Creating 
sustainable livelihoods through birdwatching tourism for indigenous people can 
have a real impact both on the lives of the traditional land owners but also 
bird conservation. A recent example of this is the Kakadu Birding Project (see The 
development of Import Bird Area (IBA) works along similar principles; 
recognizing that working with local people and traditional land owners has a 
positive impact of local conservation.


Tim Dolby

From:   on 
behalf of Tony Russell 
Sent: Monday, November 29, 2010 12:18 PM
To: Birds
Subject: Princess Parrots

Thank you John for this report and congrats on finding the PPs. However:
I too thought about going but baulked at the excessive cost of a permit
required to enter the restricted areas. $450 for a piece of paper which
probably took a clerk about two minutes to make out is not my idea of
good value, no matter what tick is at stake. Someone is ripping us off

I'll wait til the PPs appear on non restricted land - and if they don't,
well so be it, I'll go without.


-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of John Reidy
Sent: Sunday, November 28, 2010 10:00 AM
To: Birding-Aus
Subject: Princess Parrots

Hi all.

Have just returned from a successful trip to see Princess Parrots near
King's Canyon NT. 5 of us (Allan Benson, Rob Benson, Alan Morris,
Margaret Reidy) booked through the Central Land Council. We met our host

from the CLC and three aborigines representing the traditional owner and

were led to a location off the Mereenie Loop road where the birds are
breeding. Initially it didn't look good as we were driving directly into

a very sinister looking storm front. It had started to rain solidly
before we arrived at the site and we had no choice but to get out and
search for the parrots. We were soaked to the skin, cold and a bit
despondent before our aboriginal representatives gave a yell and we saw
two birds in flight. These were rather poor views and we thought that
that might be it as the birds disappeared and there was no other
activity. But eventually we saw some more and after an hour or so the
weather eased up and we were eventually able to see the birds sitting in

full sunshine sitting on dead branches, giving some good photographic

At this stage we were all ecstatic with the views we were getting. We
saw all up about 20 birds.

We had travelled via Alice Springs where we hired a Nissan Patrol and
travelled south down the Stuart Highway and took the Ernest Giles dirt
road as a shortcut. We paid for this with a blow out. As it rained on
Thursday and Friday nights at Kings Canyon, we elected to return to
Alice via the bitumen which was a longer way around, but we did see a
pair of Bustards on the way.

A word of warning, the Central Land Council is taking legal action
against some people that have trespassed on their land.

Happy birding!

John Reidy
Phone 02 9871 4836
Fax 02 9871 2616


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