Dear Birding Aus,
In response to David Stowe’s call for more information in regards to Ashwin
Rudder’s posting “OBPs at Melaleuca” on the 8th, I can reassure everyone that
there is a feed table at Melaleuca where the public and birders alike can still
view OBPs. There are at least 21 individuals in the area and at least 8 of
these are females. Our Wildcare, Friends of the Orange-bellied Parrot
volunteers are busy recording colour bands and providing high quality seed to
help boost breeding participation.
Ashwin is correct in saying that the feed table in front of the public
observatory has been removed. This was done because of increased visitor
disturbance at this site plus the propensity for Black Currawongs to loiter
within the vicinity of the feed table in association with the garden/thick
vegetation. Last year we witnessed some near misses on the OBPs. Other less
mobile species, such as Beautiful Firetail, may not have been so lucky and it
was imperative for us to move the table to a more favourable site (i.e. away
from the high Currawong use area). The temporary public hide (a modified tent)
and feed table is situated about 1km to the south of the airstrip.
Ashwin is also correct in his observations of Common Starlings. Starlings are
thankfully uncommon at Melaleuca but often appear after fires in the area,
probably because foraging is made easier in otherwise dense vegetation. There
is 2-3 pairs have moved in to Melaleuca following local habitat management
burns last April. Our department’s crack starling control team are programmed
to remove these animals next week and we will monitor the situation over summer.
I’ve noticed during several trips to Melaleuca this year that there are more
birders visiting the site - no doubt to see the species in case it disappears.
Many people are also attempting to photograph the bird and some have been too
intrusive - unnecessarily disturbing the birds at the feed table or chasing
birds in native vegetation. Considering the precarious position that the
species is in, it is vitally important that everyone takes care in approaching
birds to minimise disturbance. Visitors are welcome to quietly view the birds
at the feed table from the hide and allow the birds to do their own thing in
native veg. With patience, excellent views can be had of this beautiful bird.
We certainly do not want anyone to set up hides or climb trees. The pilots are
familiar with the OBPs and our volunteer observers are happy to provide some
Our work continues and I’m confident that we will have a successful breeding
season this year. Anyone visiting Melaleuca to observe the OBP might like to
consider donating to the Wildcare Save the Orange-bellied Parrot Fund
(http://www.wildcaretas.org.au/donation). Donations of $2 or more are tax
deductible and all funds will be used to support recovery program.
Let’s hope we can enjoy the OBP in its wilderness home for many years to come.
Chair, Orange-bellied Parrot Recovery Team
phone Aus 03 62 336033
mobile Aus 0419 120 298
fax Aus 03 62 333477
134 Macquarie Street Hobart
GPO Box 44
CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE AND DISCLAIMER
The information in this transmission may be confidential and/or protected by
legal professional privilege, and is intended only for the person or persons to
whom it is addressed. If you are not such a person, you are warned that any
disclosure, copying or dissemination of the information is unauthorised. If
you have received the transmission in error, please immediately contact this
office by telephone, fax or email, to inform us of the error and to enable
arrangements to be made for the destruction of the transmission, or its return
at our cost. No liability is accepted for any unauthorised use of the
information contained in this transmission.
To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)