Bird threats List

To: Marilyn Davis <>
Subject: Bird threats List
From: Pat and Ian May <>
Date: Mon, 26 Mar 2001 13:38:35 +0930
Hello Marilyn

You have compiled a very thorough list here.

A couple of years ago we observed broad acre controlled burning of
Parry's Lagoon an internationally recognised wetland, near Wyndham, WA. 
The fires were started in the last week of March and when I enquired at
the local Council about who was responsible, I was informed the burning
is part of a regular program carried out by the Department of
Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia.  The Bastion Range
and other areas around the region were also set on fire before the end
of March.

At the time there were hundreds of Red-kneed Dotterel nesting at Parry's
Lagoon.  The swamp margins recede quickly after the wet season and
dotterel nests that were originally surrounded by flooded tussock grass
were now high and dry on the mainland.  When the fires burnt through,
the nests were all in an advanced state of incubation as were also
hundreds of quail and finches as well as other passerines nesting in the

We knew of a regular site for finding Chestnut-backed Button Quail on
the Bastion Range, next to the Five Rivers Lookout road.  We suspected
they were nesting there too, and also a pair of Northern Rosellas
however these were all burnt out also.  The destruction of all nests in
the burnt out areas was complete and its hard to see any conservation
management benefit from this activity which is so widespread through the
Kimberley.  If controlled burning is to be considered, then surely it is
reasonable that the protection and welfare of breeding native animals
and birds must first be assured.


Ian May
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