Carnaby's Cockatoos perched lovingly in old tree
Dear Friends in Conservation,
This summer has been a hive of activity in Perth with exciting projects for the Carnaby's Black Cockatoo. In January, we completed our Summer Program under the strong rays of sunshine, engaging volunteers in a half day of educational activities across the metro area. Volunteers took part in dieback prevention, injecting species at St Emilie’s Primary School in Canning Vale. This involved drilling small guide holes at intervals around the tree trunk and injecting phosphite into the holes. Over 40% of Western Australia’s native plant species are susceptible to dieback, including banksias and jarrah which are important species for the Carnabys. Injecting susceptible trees with phosphite can reduce the spread of the disease and control its impact.
During February, we visited Orange Grove Primary School and conducted a nesting box workshop with students. A very special guest accompanied us, Simon Cherriman, B.Sc Hons (Env. Biol.), MSciComm (Nat. Hist. Film) who is an Environmental Biologist, Educator, Filmmaker, Wedge-tailed Eagle Specialist and a professional tree climber. The whole school was involved in the morning’s presentation with Simon who inspired the students and shared with them the plight of the Carnabys Black Cockatoo. The older students then spent the rest of the day constructing parrot and Carnabys nesting boxes, which were installed around the school by Simon. Simon Cherriman shared his gratefulness “… for the opportunity to reach more children with (his) nest box work.” Since the workshop, students have been outside every day, observing bird behaviour around the nesting boxes. The students are recording all animal activity on a school website blog, and all observations are added to Simon’s database, including seeing a couple of Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo’s sitting on top of one of their nest boxes.
This month saw the first Conservation Volunteers Australia Business Clean Up Day Challenge at Sir James Mitchell Park in South Perth. This large park is in the middle of Perth’s inner city suburbia, and the melaleuca groves provide shaded spots for Carnabys to rest during their daily search for food and water. Three separate teams competed to collect the most rubbish from this area, which by the end of the day totalled 116kg. Rubbish collection is an important activity that protects our native fauna from unnecessary injury. Some of the more unusual items found were a set of car keys, three passports and perfectly usable wooden chair.
Outside of these activities highlighted above, our volunteer teams have been regularly visiting an important site for the Carnabys Black Cockatoo. Yanchep National Park is 40km to the north of Perth, and is home to many large flocks of Carnabys. This area is also a key release site for rehabilitated Carnaby’s. The Department of Parks and Wildlife in conjunction with Kaarakin Black Cockatoo Conservation Centre have released several flocks here. Loch Mcness is the main water source within the national park, and has many creeks running into it. One of these creeks was strangled with the weed ‘typha’, blocking water flow. Teams have been working to remove the typha over the last few months. Before they started, the water wasn’t even visible. Now, we are happy to report, that this creek now once again carries fresh water back into Loch Mcness. Carnabys have been seen drinking from the creek, and the project was deemed a huge success by the Parks and Wildlife Rangers.
Conservation Volunteers Australia would like to thank our supporters and volunteers, for their ongoing support. Without this support, we wouldn’t be able to make a difference to the future of the Carnaby’s and Red-tailed Black Cockatoos, and spread the important message on conserving these species. If you are able to donate again, this will be greatly appreciated as every donation enables the continuation of such positive results, and gives these beautiful birds a better chance at coming back from the brink of extinction.
Students of Orange Grove making nesting boxes
Simon Cherriman installing boxes in school grounds
Sorting rubbish collected during clean up day
Volunteers clearing strangled creek of typha weed