Waterbird numbers lowest in 20 years

To: <>, <>
Subject: Waterbird numbers lowest in 20 years
From: "Mike" <>
Date: Sun, 31 Oct 2004 08:10:48 +1000
G'Day Birding-Aus viewers

        "One of the biggest wildlife surveys in the world has found that 
> numbers in a significant part of Australia are at their worst levels in
> more than 20 years."
Some of the birds that escaped the Australian census have come up here to New 
Guinea.  We have 12 Australian White Ibis  newly arrived at our experimental 
paddy rice plots and up to 30 Grey Teal on our inner campus lakes.  There are 
also 6 White-headed Shelduck and 84 Spotted Whistling Duck moving between our 
sewage ponds and rice patch but they are more likely from wetter parts of this 

Early in the year we received our annual crop of immature Pied Herons most of 
which have now gained adult plumage.  As a breeding colony (or site) for these 
herons has still not been located on New Guinea it is presumed these are birds 
from Australia.  We do not mind at all looking after your birds when you are 
short of water - they add to the attractions on our campus and across the 
southern part of the island.

The two hundred Pacific Black Duck and 60 Wandering Whistling Duck that occupy 
our campus at the moment are always on this part of the island of New Guinea 
but a few green Pygmy Geese have just returned from a breeding effort elsewhere.

I believe NG acts as a preserve for some Australian waterbirds during time of 
severe drought for they return to Australia once you blokes put a bit of water 
back in your lakes, rivers and dams.

Happy birding


Dr Mike Tarburton
Dean: School of Science and Technology
Pacific Adventist University
PMB, Boroko
Papua New Guinea

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