Re: Secrecy of locations

To: Ian May <>
Subject: Re: Secrecy of locations
From: Peter Waanders <>
Date: Thu, 10 Jun 2010 15:14:39 +0930
Ian et al - I didn't raise this as a topic for discussion - it was a
request. I don't care who agrees or disagrees. FYI it was the same
NP&WS you mention that closed off an entire conservation park a few
years ago because a SCP sighting was made public.

On 6/10/10, Ian May <> wrote:
> Hi all
> Sorry to have to disagree with Peter on this topic.   Occasionally this
> thread is raised and previously I have resisted comment however there is
> another perspective to this discussion.
> It has been my experience that people with untoward intentions toward
> our wildlife often have more information about their targets than we
> concerned people do.   Unless an occurrence is a one off where absolute
> secrecy can be assured, the outcome from selective secrecy is more
> likely to be negative to the good intention of protection because
> secrecy provides a protected environment for poaching to flourish.
> Contrary to the regularly held belief that secrecy helps protect our
> rarer birds, the best deterrent to poachers is public knowledge of
> locations.  The knowledge generates interest from responsible people who
> have concern and interest about the welfare of the subject.  An
> effective deterrent is provided from random visits by people with
> legitimate interest combined with follow up from authorities if a
> suspicious person is observed and reported.
> An example is Grey Falcon breeding near Strzelecki Xing.   For many
> years selective secrecy failed to help protect the birds.  Sighting
> locations for Grey Falcon in the Far North of SA were kept quiet and
> every year most known nesting attempts failed.   Reports from Cooper
> Basin oil workers and pastoralists about persons with roof top ladders
> were occasionally rumoured but frustratingly never anything much was
> reported that could be followed up. Often unidentified vehicle tracks
> could be found leading from the nest tree and it seemed that poachers
> alway knew the location of Grey Falcon nests before anyone else.  In
> this case it was clear that intended secrecy was working against the
> welfare of the birds so a decision was made to reveal general locations
> where Grey Falcon could likely be observed and almost immediately we
> (SANPWS Far North) began to receive a useful flow of monitored
> information.   And for years after that, these Grey Falcons bred
> successfully.
> There are exceptions but generally, selective secrecy puts our rarest
> wildlife of interest at risk.   Importantly however, if suspicious
> individuals are observed  a thorough description with all relevant ID
> details should be reported to NPWS ASAP.
> For what it is worth
> Regards
> Ian May
> St Helens, Tasmania
> Peter Waanders wrote:
>>Could people who might want to assist John please refrain from posting
>>specific locations for Scarlet-chested Parrot on birding-aus but rather
>> send
>>it to him directly. According to inside information from SA NP&W there
>>appears to be a real risk of poaching. Whether this is justified or not,
>>it's probably better to be safe than sorry.
>>Peter Waanders
>>Southern Birding Services
>>PO Box 420
>>Waikerie, 5330 South Australia
>>mob.: 0409 763172
>>sat.: 0424 212889
>>SA Birding:
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