Be on look­out for black cock­a­toos

Kalgoorlie Miner - - NEWS - Heather Chalmers

A se­nior wildlife of­fi­cer is ask­ing Gold­fields res­i­dents to keep an eye out for Carn­aby’s black cock­a­toos as they fly into the Esper­ance and Raven­sthorpe ar­eas in com­ing weeks.

Rick Daw­son said staff from the Depart­ment of Parks and Wildlife had banded more than 1000 of the cock­a­toos in the past decade and they wanted to keep track of their progress for on­go­ing re­search and mon­i­tor­ing.

At this time of year, Carn­aby’s black cock­a­toos are re­turn­ing from their breed­ing grounds to the coast, with flocks now be­ing spot­ted all along the south coast, in­clud­ing from Raven­sthorpe to Es- per­ance. “Peo­ple from Kal­go­or­lie of­ten go down to the coast for week­ends and we are ask­ing any­one who sees a Carn­aby wear­ing a shiny piece of bling on their right leg to take a photo of it,” Mr Daw­son said.

“If they have this leg band, it means they were tagged by us, and we are par­tic­u­larly in­ter­ested in the last three num­bers.

“We cur­rently only have two records for that area so it is im­por­tant to get more in­for­ma­tion about the birds’ sur­vivor­ship and move­ments.

“They go right along as far as Cape Arid and live along the coast from Fe­bru­ary-July and are of­ten seen in the salmon gum and white gum trees.” Mr Daw­son said be­tween 200 and 300 Carn­aby’s black cock­a­toos were killed on the roads each year, which was a big dent in num­bers given only an es­ti­mated 40,000 were left in the wild.

For­est red-tail black cock­a­too num­bers are down to be­tween 10,000 and 12,000 .

He said the rea­son for their small num­bers was in part be­cause of the low rate of suc­cess in hatching and rear­ing chicks.

Any­one who pho­to­graphs a bird and can iden­tify its band num­ber is asked to con­tact the depart­ment through a pri­vate mes­sage on the Depart­ment of Parks and Wildlife’s Face­book page or by email­ing fau na@dpaw.wa.gov.au with the photo and lo­ca­tion.

Pic­ture: Georgina Steytler

A Carn­aby’s black cock­a­too.

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