birding-aus Birders responsibilities to report birds

Subject: birding-aus Birders responsibilities to report birds
From: "David Geering"<>
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 1999 10:34:27 +1000
"... if you have a lot of people reporting sightings of a particular
but there are only a few "official" sightings then that says something
about the system."

It could also say something about people's inclination to be lazy or
apathetic.  Really, if these things don't get officially recognised then we
could well be doing the birds a disservice.

A good case in point is the Regent Honeyeater Recovery Effort.  I am always
chasing people for Regent Honeyeater records, and most people are very
happy to oblige.  I am, however, aware that I don't get all records (and
probably never will).  What some people fail to acknowledge is that by
collating all of these records we can start to get a better understanding
of the movement patterns of this species and this will directly benefit the
species.  At present we have a good understanding of where the main
breeding areas are and are actively working towards habitat protection and
rehabilitation at these sites.  The problem remains that we have a fairly
rudimentary knowledge of the important non-breeding sites.  This makes it
very difficult to even start directing resources to these areas.  No amount
of effort at the breeding areas will save a species from extinction if the
habitat on which it depends for the rest of the year continues to be

I'm sure the same can be said of many species.  The great era of
discovering new species in Australia is at a close (unless you are Dr.
Schodde) although we could, however, still find a living Night Parrot.
There is still, however, much we don't know about our birds, and for many
species this includes their distribution.  I would urge everyone to report
what you see.  There are bird reports regularly produced for many areas
that will document these records.  If it means that me give the rarities
committees something to do all the better.

David Geering

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