Re:Australian Bustard Decline

To: <>, <>
Subject: Re:Australian Bustard Decline
From: "Scott O'Keeffe" <>
Date: Mon, 12 Mar 2001 19:16:03 +1000
I think it is probably likely that we have insufficient knowledge of Bustard
population dynamics to quantify the impacts of cars, land clearing, hunting,
poisons, etc.  Are bustards slow breeders?  As long as they continue to
decline, we should be trying to gather information, while adopting the
precautionary principle.  We should not be encouraging anything which
reduces Bustard numbers until we have a very good picture or the relative
importance of each of the impacts. Although we can make some good guesses
about what may be contributing most to bustard declines, I have seen nothing
on this list so far which is in any way conclusive.  The most insistent
statements in this discussion have been strong opinions, undoubtedly based
on personal preferences, but they are not ecological "fact".  I have my own
ideas about what factors may be most important in the decline of bustards.
Irrespective of how much attachment I have to these pet ideas, they still
need to be tested. Bustard conservation will necessarily need to be based on
good ecology.

Scott O'Keeffe

-----Original Message-----
 Behalf Of stannard
Sent: 13 March 2001 01:39
To:  Russel Woodford
Subject: Re:Australian Bustard Decline

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.

Birding-Aus is on the Web at
To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send the message
"unsubscribe birding-aus" (no quotes, no Subject line)

Birding-Aus is on the Web at
To unsubscribe from this mailing list, send the message
"unsubscribe birding-aus" (no quotes, no Subject line)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU