Re:Australian Bustard Decline

To: " Russel Woodford" <>
Subject: Re:Australian Bustard Decline
From: stannard <>
Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2001 15:39:04 +0000
G,  Day  Birding - auser's,
Further to what Michael Todd has said [B.aus 11.3.2001] I know from
personal experience that  parts of Lakefield N.P. has good numbers of
Bustards, especially on the Northern section where I was based. On the
Ex Cattle Station Kalpowar, across the Normanby River from Lakefield
N.P, where I worked in the early 80's, we had to muster the Bustards
[40+]   from the Airstrip every Monday before the mail plane landed.
This property is now Vacant Crown Land and subject to native title. When
visiting the same airstrip and area in Sept 2000, I never saw a Bustard.
Until 1995, I had been in Cape York for 17 years, and before living
permanently at the Tip of Cape York, [9 Years] and in my travels around
Cape York, before, and while working with N.P'S, part of my duties were
at other Parks in the Cape, this involved a lot of travelling. In the
early days [1978 on] I always saw Bustards at every camping site,
tracks, roads, and private property that I visited. The Bustards, Emus
and Cassowary's were shot out of Bamaga, the Northern Peninsula Area,
[N. P.A.] in the early seventies, more as a supplement to food supply's
and feasts rather than sport. In January 1999 and September 2000, my
family and I spent two weeks travelling and camping in Cape York on the
way to Bamaga,[ N. P.A.] during that time we saw only one Bustard for
the whole trip and that was on our friends Cattle Station  on the East
Coast. I do not believe we can put all the blame for the decline in
Bustard numbers on habitat change, especially in Far North Qld, up there
it has not changed very much, what has changed is the amount of
travellers and vechiles that now visit the N. P.A  and a great majority
of these travellers are hunters after feral pigs whose mentality is, if
it moves shoot it. Closer to home we have a healthy population  of
Bustards at two areas that we visit near the Township of Mt Molloy, Nth
Good Birding,
Ron  Stannard   K.P.B.W.L.

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