Ever noticed how the TV networks put up similar shows against
each other, so they can spoil each other's ratings? It happened again tonight in
the Sunday 7:30 timeslot in Melbourne when the ABC ran the first of their
specials on Australian islands (This one on Lizard Is) while Channel 7 ran a
documentary on (surprise, surprise) Australia's islands.
I flicked over to the channel 7 show to see pictures of Chukar
Partridge on Flinders Island. I didn't catch the start of the scene so I don't
know whether these were supposed to be wild birds or not. The woman speaking at
the time was talking about the abundant wildlife on the island, so I presume
these Chukars were supposed to be tame.
I saw a covey of about 8 birds on Flinders Island back in Feb
1995. Then (as now I think) Chukar Partridge was not on the official Australian
list. Assuming that tonight's footage was shot in 2001, that would mean these
birds have been on Flinders for at least six years, a mere handful of years
before they qualify for recognition under the "ten year rule" (ie a feral
population independantly extant for more than ten years)
Did anybody see this programme? Does anybody else have
sightings of this species on Flinders Island and would anyone know the status of
any populations on the island. Can they be considered wild? I know that this is
only a "plastic" species, not a native, but I think its interesting to keep tabs
on our feral species as well.
And of course, if it does get accepted on the Australian list,
that's one more tick for me. Not that I'm into that sort of shallow