Valley

More next boxes for turquoise parrots

The 150th turquoise parrot nest box was installed in the Warby Ranges recently.
Chris Tzaros, Peter Smith & Janice Mentiplay-Smith with the 150th nest box

The specially designed nest boxes provide nesting hollows for the turquoise parrot, a threatened species, whose numbers have been affected by the loss of natural hollows due to past clearing of vegetation.

Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA) Conservation Management Network (CMN) Co-ordinator Janice Mentiplay-Smith said the Broken Boosey CMN and Chris Tzaros from Birds, Bush and Beyond had initiated the Practical Parrot Action project to address the lack of nesting hollows.

“For the past two years we have been working with landholders, schools, wineries, golf clubs and other local organisations to build and install nest boxes on suitable sites on private and public land,” Ms Mentiplay-Smith said.

“The project has also involved revegetating 80 ha, 4km of fencing to protect remnant vegetation and running field days and other activities to inform the local community about this special little parrot that’s found in their neighbourhood.”

The project, initially funded through the Victorian Government’s Communities for Nature program, has received follow-up funding from the Nestlé Community Environment Program.

“This very welcome funding was used to build and install another 30 purpose-built nest boxes on private land and will allow the Broken Boosey CMN to continue seasonal woodland bird monitoring and mapping,” Ms Mentiplay-Smith said.

Monitoring last spring showed turquoise parrots nesting and raising chicks in a number of the nest boxes.

“It is hoped that with more nest boxes out there, more connected vegetation, and greater awareness in the community about the needs of the turquoise parrot – and the ways landholders can accommodate them by making small changes in the way the manage their properties – that turquoise parrot numbers will not dwindle to the alarmingly low numbers that are the plight of so many other woodland bird species.”

For further information about the project, or to get involved, contact Janice Mentiplay-Smith on 5764 7506 or janicem@gbcma.vic.gov.au