The shocking fate of Carnaby’s Cockatoo
Retention of all bushland and pine plantation habitat is essential if we are to retain this iconic species in our region.
Tell your local MP’s – both State and federal – that they must act now to stop the annual net loss of habitat by clearing and to apply legally binding protection to all habitat. Also seek the same commitments from your local candidates at the WA State election March 2017.
The following is an article from Birdlife Australia on the Great Cocky Count 2016 – heading for extinction
News from Birdlife Australia 2 November 2016
New report reveals black future for endangered cockatoos
The numbers are in and the news for Perth’s much-loved black-cockatoos is far from encouraging. Results from BirdLife Australia’s 2016 Great Cocky Count, released today, indicate that populations of Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoos across the Perth–Peel Coastal Plain are still in rapid decline.
In one of the largest citizen science surveys of its kind in Australia, this year more than 700 volunteers took part in the Great Cocky Count across the Perth–Peel Coastal Plain. Their task: to count black-cockatoos as they flew in to roost sites in the evening.
“What they saw really set alarm bells ringing,” said Adam Peck, who coordinated the Great Cocky Count. “This year’s results backed up the shocking rate of decline we’ve detected in previous years’ counts. The numbers continue to fall.”
When you crunch the numbers, with 10,919 Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoos counted, the population in the Perth–Peel Coastal Plain has halved in the last six years, falling by an average of 10% per year.
“At that rate, the people of Perth are likely to lose their Carnaby’s population in just a few years.”
“The results also confirm that Perth’s pine plantations provide the most important roost sites, and this is where we are seeing really alarming results,” Adam continued. “The number of birds roosting in pines fell by 22%.”
“Nearly two-thirds of the Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoos recorded in the Perth-Peel Coastal Plain roosted in a single plantation—the Gnangara-Pinjar pine plantation,” he said. “It’ a crucial site where the birds can rest as well as find a ready supply of food.”
“The trouble is that the plantation’s days are numbered. Under the State Government’s ‘Green Growth Plan’, by 2020, all the mature pine trees—they’re the most important ones—will be gone, and any seedlings planted now won’t be suitable for cockies to use for about a decade.”
“It’s what happens between now and then that has us really worried. There’s a critical two-year time gap between when all the mature pines are cleared in 2020, and when the first 500 hectares replanted in 2012 will start producing the food Carnaby’s so desperately need.
With only 8000 hectares of the Gnangara-Pinjar pine plantation left, any more loss of habitat will likely see these birds starve.
BirdLife Australia is campaigning to stop any further clearing of Carnaby’s habitat, including Gnangara-Pinjar pine plantation, until alternate food resources become available to ensure the survival of Perth’s Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoos.
We are calling on all Australians–and the people of Perth in particular–to stand up for this majestic bird. Extinction is a choice. Please sign our petition to ensure Premier Barnett makes the right one.