Snipe Project Update and a Challenge
Snipe Project Update and a Challenge
Lori Gould <>
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 03:00:06 +0000
There is a lot happening with the Snipe project and I thought an update was in order:
- As you may know, the hypothesis for taking some of the actions we have been taking with Snipe monitoring is based around the idea that a proportion of birds return to the same location
in Australia after migrating to Japan. This has underpinned our decision to use radio tracking and geolocators this coming season instead of satellite trackers, as these methods are a lot cheaper and have a lower impact on the birds. These have been funded
by the ACT Government. The geolocators will hopefully record migration data and the radio tracking will record fine scale local movement (as was shown by the satellite data last season but at a less accurate scale due to them being set up for migration). We
have been able to redeploy our now unused satellite trackers to CSIRO, who will use them to track Straw-necked Ibis from Canberra as part of their large Environmental Watering project in the Murray Darling where they are tracking Ibis
https://research.csiro.au/ewkrwaterbirds/ - a project which in itself is very exciting and one that we are proud to be a partner.
- We are doing our first Canberra Snipe catch this season on the 9th and 10th December at Jerrabomberra Wetlands. There have been a number of catches done in Port
Fairy over the last couple of months which have included have three recaptures of birds from last year – one with a geolocator. The device had to be sent to the manufacturers in the UK as the battery had died, only to find that it stopped working prior the
bird migrating so all the data was local movements only. This was a big disappointment obviously but promising in terms of recapture rates and the quality of the data.
- One of the Snipe in Canberra has been observed with an orange leg flag twice now. We assume it is one that we put on last season. This is
extremely significant as it is the first time a bird has been re-sighted in a different season in a location other than Port Fairy. It adds considerable weight to the hypothesis that at least some of the birds are loyal to their Australian over-winter
sites. Here is the challenge I would like to set to all photographers!
Anyone who gets a photo of this bird’s leg flag will win five free Snipe tea towels! If you can see the number on the flag I will throw in the new edition of Birds of the High Country as well - set to be launched on the 1st December at the Wetlands
(details TBA). You will also of course get bragging rights with your photo featured as Photo of the Week on our Facebook page. Please note that you can still purchase a tea towel from me for $10 to help raise funds for the project – Christmas presents sorted
- The Australia Japan Foundation have awarded us a grant to take some of our Young Rangers and 3 researchers to Japan next May to help the Wild Brid Society of Japan to survey Snipe
in Hokkaido. This is a wonderful way to cement our strong collaboration with the Japanese and observe Snipe in an entirely different setting. The Young Rangers will also be involved in the catching and tracking in Australia as well.
- Finally, the National Snipe surveys are underway with the first survey undertaken in September, one due for 25th November and the final one on the 13th Jan.
Thanks to everyone involved in the many aspects of this project, and we are always happy to have more people involved! Feel free to get in touch if you want to discuss any of this further.
Woodlands and Wetlands Trust (Jerrabomberra Wetlands)
PO Box 58 Fyshwick ACT 2609
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