Share your bird sight­ings

The Cobram Courier - - NEWS -

For Strath­mer­ton res­i­dents, it is time to go bird watch­ing.

District res­i­dents are be­ing en­cour­aged to share sight­ings of en­dan­gered bird species such as su­perb par­rots, grey-crowned bab­blers and bush-stone curlews as part of the Goul­burnBro­ken Catch­ment Man­age­ment Author­ity’s Link­ing Lower Goul­burn project.

Goul­burn-Bro­ken CMA project of­fi­cer Jan­ice Men­tiplay-Smith said well­known ecol­o­gist Chris Tzaros would be sur­vey­ing bird num­bers and lo­ca­tions this month and next.

‘‘Chris con­ducted a sim­i­lar sur­vey back in 2016,’’ she said.

‘‘This sur­vey will not only try to as­cer­tain the pres­ence of th­ese species and whether they’ve re­sponded to reveg­e­ta­tion works that have been done since the last sur­vey, but it’s also an op­por­tu­nity to talk to land­hold­ers in the area and ask about their ob­ser­va­tions of the types of habitat the birds are seen in and around.’’

Mr Tzaros will also be sur­vey­ing pad­dock trees in the area.

‘‘The im­por­tance of large, ma­ture pad­dock trees is fre­quently over­looked,’’ Ms Men­tiplay-Smith said.

‘‘How­ever, they are cru­cial for wildlife. One large pad­dock tree can be re­garded as a gi­ant su­per­mar­ket for birds like the grey-crowned bab­bler, which is a bird that spends a lot of its time be­neath old trees look­ing for in­ver­te­brates that live around the base of large trees.

‘‘Bush-stone curlews also rely heav­ily on large pad­dock trees. As a pri­mar­ily ground-dwelling bird, they spend their days safely hid­den amongst fallen logs and tim­ber, which ac­cu­mu­lates be­neath the trees, un­til they be­gin hunt­ing for food at night.

‘‘A large tree is a one-stop shop for th­ese birds. It is safer and more en­er­gy­ef­fec­tive for a bird to only need to visit one tree, rather than many smaller trees.’’

The project, funded through the Vic­to­rian Govern­ment’s Our Catch­ments Our Com­mu­ni­ties ini­tia­tive, works with land­hold­ers to im­prove habitat for wildlife.

Grants are avail­able for fenc­ing rem­nant veg­e­ta­tion, link­ing rem­nants with new veg­e­ta­tion and weed con­trol to en­cour­age re­gen­er­a­tion of na­tive veg­e­ta­tion.

To find out more about the project, phone Jan­ice Men­tiplay-Smith on 5764 7506 or visit the web­site at jan­[email protected]

Watch for birds: A bush-stone curlew is among those res­i­dents are be­ing urged to look out for.

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