Orange-bellied Parrots

To: "" <>
Subject: Orange-bellied Parrots
From: Debbie Lustig <>
Date: Mon, 25 Nov 2013 23:07:29 +1100
With guarded optimism, I'd like to bring List readers up to scratch with this 
season's OBP news.As of 10/11, only 17 birds had arrived at Melaleuca - 10 
females and 7 males. If fewer than 20 birds had arrived by this date, the OBP 
Recovery Team had decided that captive birds would be released.Therefore, on 
Friday, 15/11, 12 OBPs were flown into Melaleuca. They comprised nine birds 
bred at Healesville Sanctuary and three at Taroona, near Hobart.On arrival, 
they were introduced to a pre-release aviary, where a feed table was set up on 
the outside. Here, wild birds were observed feeding, considered a good 
behaviour.On Sunday, 17/11, the aviary was opened at 6.30am, with a local 
Needwonnee indigenous woman performing a welcome to country. The birds received 
this message: 'Murrock (parrot)! You are safe, you are family, you are welcomed 
in country'.The next day, Monday 18/11, 12 more birds, all bred at Taroona, 
arrived. These were released on Tuesday, 19/11, under the scrutiny of 
 an ABC TV and radio crew. News reached Victorian TV news that night, with a 
report on the 7pm bulletin .During these exciting releases, it was noticed 
another two wild birds had arrived. 
These bring the total presumed alive to 43, which is about the same number of 
birds as at the end of the breeding season last year ie 44. We eagerly await 
this summer's breeding results. How good it would be to no longer say there are 
'Fewer than 50 in the wild' but many, many more.                                

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