First Annual Lavinia State Reserve Bird Count
- to take place on National Threatened Species Day
The Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service together with Birdlife Tasmania will be holding the first annual bird count within the Lavinia State Reserve on King Island to gather valuable information about bird species within the area.
Lavinia State Reserve is situated on the North East coast of King Island. The reserve contains spectacular coastal and bush scenery, wildlife and a significant lagoon and wetland system. The reserve is listed under the Ramsar convention as a Wetland of International Significance.
The site is a hotspot of biodiversity due to its mix of habitat and wetland types, but also because the ecological communities on King Island represent a transitional zone between mainland Australia and Tasmania supporting species from the north and the south.
The reserve provides critical feeding and nesting sites for the critically endangered Orange-bellied parrot during its annual migration between Southeast Australia and Tasmania. The extensive sandy beaches within the reserve support nesting shorebirds such as hooded plovers and large colonies of the nationally threatened fairy tern. The King Island Scrub-tit, one of the rarest birds in the world, resides amongst the melaleuca swamp forests within Lavinia.
Ongoing monitoring of birds is useful because birds are a good indicator of general environmental health including habitat condition and ecosystem function. The information gathered during the Lavinia bird count will be used to track changes in bird populations and it sheds light on species distribution, population trends, and how landscape level changes are affecting bird habitats. These trends give conservationists, land managers and policy makers a window into the natural world and the health of environment, and allow them to implement conservation action for those species that are declining.
During the count, volunteers will collect data that will contribute to the Atlas of bird distributions, and the Tasmanian Natural Values Atlas against which future changes can be monitored.
The Lavinia bird count will be held Thursday 7 September 2017 to coincide with National Threatened Species Day.
National Threatened Species Day has a special connection to Tasmania as it is held on 7 September each year to mark the night the last Thylacine died in the Hobart Zoo. National Threatened Species Day is a time to reflect on the loss of this species and how similar fates could await other native plants and animals unless appropriate action is taken.
If you are interested in volunteering your time to take part in the survey on the 7th September on King Island please register your interest before Friday 1st September. Contact the King island Field Centre 03 64621608 or email Shelley.Graham@parks.tas.gov.au