Turtle

Woodland Birds at Waggarandall Walk and Squawk

Wednesday 17 October, 2012
Seventy people attended an exciting and educational 'Walk and Squawk', a bird watching day at Yourang Reserve on the Broken Creek, which was sponsored by the Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network (CMN).

Seventy people attended an exciting and educational 'Walk and Squawk', a bird watching day at Yourang Reserve on the Broken Creek, which was sponsored by the Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network (CMN).

This biodiversity focused activity was part of 'Biodiversity Spring – Ninety Days of Nature' and compliments their Woodland Bird project, where landholders are protecting and enhancing native vegetation on which our wonderful birds rely. The Woodland bird community is made up of species such as yellow robins, diamond firetails, speckled warblers and grey-crowned babblers, to name a few. This bird community is in danger of becoming extinct because of habitat loss, so it's great that people are getting out and appreciating their uniqueness.

Broken Boosey CMN Coordinator Janice Mentiplay-Smith explains "Each year we try to do something special in the Broken Boosey region to celebrate our wonderful biodiversity; this year's Walk and Squawk was extremely well attended and received. Our guest speaker and guide Ian Davidson is an authority on our Woodland Birds, and gave an extremely engaging insight into the lives and habits of these birds."

"For example, did you know that one group of birds, the thornbills (amongst our smallest) divide trees up depending on the species, with some preferring to forage high in the trees (striated thornbill), others in the middle canopy (buff-rumped thornbill) and yet others in the lower canopy (brown thornbill), others closer to the ground (Yellow-rumped thornbill) looking for insects. What a great way to share all the insects on a tree! Insect-eaters, such as thornbills, help keep our trees healthy by keeping insects under control"

The guest speaker, Ian Davidson, took the group on a walk through the reserve, where they explored many aspects of the dynamics of the natural world—territory, food, nesting opportunities, breeding habits, nesting hollows, fragmentation of habitat, understory plants, insect influence—and noisy miners.

Sean Guinane from Integrated Catchment Services attended the day as well, and gave an interesting talk about the direct seeding he has recently done at the site. Pegs were placed in the rows to make inspection that little bit easier.

The day was well attended by members of the Broken Creek Field Naturalists group, as well as the Bird Observers Club. Twenty-seven of those who attended hadn't been to a CMN event before, which is a great outcome, as one of the main functions of a CMN is to introduce 'new' people into the world of appreciating and under-standing biodiversity.

A catered picnic-style lunch was enjoyed, with more discussion by Ian Davidson on the species observed and the factors affecting populations.

"Of course these days are only successful due to the hard work from those involved so many thanks to the Broken Boosey CMN committee members, Broken Creek Field Naturalists, Ian Davidson and Sean Guinane for all their input and assistance on what was a thoroughly enjoyable day" says Ms Mentiplay-Smith.

The CMNs work closely with the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA) to deliver projects in the region which benefit biodiversity and involve the community. Together we work with public and private land managers to protect the threatened species and remnant vegetation that occur within the region. This project is funded by 'Caring for our Country', a federal government initiative, with support from the Moira Shire Council, the Department of Sustainability and Environment, the Goulburn Broken CMA and Parks Victoria.

If you would like to be involved in CMN activities such as this one, call Janice Mentiplay-Smith on 5761 1644 or email Janicem@gbcma.vic.gov.au

Photo: Sean Guinane talking about the direct seeding at Yourang