Bushfires in Australia have pushed the Western Ground Parrot even closer to the brink

December 1st, 2015 | by LubosTomiska
Bushfires in Australia have pushed the Western Ground Parrot even closer to the brink
Conservation projects
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Has the Western Ground Parrot become Australia’s rarest bird after bushfires destroyed 90% of its known occupied habitat?

A field team from the Western Australian Department of Parks and Wildlife together with a group of volunteers were attempting to capture a small number of Western Ground Parrots when out-of-control bushfires which had been started by lightning set Cape Arid National Park ablaze.

The team had managed to capture two birds when they had to abandon their work and were forced to evacuate the national park. The two lucky birds have since been taken to Perth Zoo where they joined five other Western Ground Parrots in the hope to bolster chances to successfully breed the species.

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Stark reality of what many parts of Cape Arid National Park now look like. This photo was taken by the Western Ground Parrot field team studying the impact of the October fires. We are still waiting for an update from the current blaze. (c) Lucy Clausen / DPaW

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The fate of the only population of Western Ground Parrots found in the wild is not known. It is hoped that some of the birds managed to escape the fires. It is important that these birds are found as soon as possible so feral predator control can be carried out in the area where the birds are to minimise further threats.

To help raise funds for this, the Friends of the Western Ground Parrot have started a campaign and hope for your support to give one of the world’s rarest birds a chance to recover after the devastating fires: https://www.justgiving.com/Friends-of-the-Western-Ground-Parrot

READ  Private breeders started a breeding project for the Swift Parrot (Lathamus discolor)

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We have learned that one of the fires burning in Cape Arid National Park is contained and under control – approx. 163,000ha of the national park have been burned in the recent fires. (c) Jennene Riggs

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Follow Friends of the Western Ground Parrot on facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/Friends-of-the-Western-Ground-Parrot-283796521652371/?fref=photo

Title photo: Young Western Ground Parrot that escaped the fire. (c) Jennene Riggs.

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