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Native birds can provide important financial benefits

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Giving gulls the bird saves wetland

"It was supposed to be a hotbed for bird diversity. But not long after being created in 2012, the Clayton South wetland was afflicted with a serious bout of gull glut.

More than 7500 argumentative silver gulls descended on Namatjira Park Wetlands to drink and bathe by day, scaring off the native birds. Residents, increasingly annoyed by the squabbling noise and bird droppings, started lodging complaints with the park's authority, Melbourne Water."

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Taking a ramble on the wild side

In the tradition of Steve Abbott's comedy radio program "Birdbrain", broadcast on ABC Local Radio some years ago, comes "Hello Birdy", hosted by veteran Australian actor William McInnes.

"Hello Birdy" screens on ABC1, commencing on Saturday, February 1, 6.30pm.

This is a six-part series, in which, according to the ABC, "William McInnes gets up close and personal with some of Australia's diverse birdlife. With his offbeat sense of humour and a weird bag of tricks, William observes Australia's birdlife and the people who work alongside them."

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Rare Carnaby's cockatoo lets chicks starve

Peter Hancock's weekly 'Birds of Perth' series today features the life history of Carnaby's Black-Cockatoo.

Read it now on the Sydney Morning Herald website.

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Birds flock to Hexham Swamp

"It was a great pleasure to spend a day at Hexham Swamp now that all the floodgates have been opened and returned the place to its former glory" says Jim Thomson of the Maitland Mercury. "Hexham Swamp is an internationally recognised  wetland and we can now  look forward to great numbers of waders returning."

Read the full story on the Maitland Mercury's website.

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Why do birds fly in a V formation?

Birds of a feather may flock together, but why they fly together in V formations has never been known for certain. Now, with the help of 14 northern bald ibises fitted with lightweight sensors on a 1000-kilometre migration from Austria to Tuscany, researchers are suggesting that the explanation is one that was long suspected but never proved: the formation helps the birds conserve energy.

 

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Hikers unsettle bird life more than buses

Scientists have discovered that individual people on foot can be more disturbing to wildlife than a busload of sightseers.

Victoria University’s Dr Patrick-Jean Guay and Deakin University’s Dr Mike Weston studied the response of nearly 40 waterbird species to incursions into their wetland habitat by walkers, cyclists, cars and buses.

Read the full article here.

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Are Kiwi's really kiwi's?

New research is suggesting that that New Zealand icon, the kiwi, might actually have had an Australian ancestor rather than the giant Moa as was previously thought. Read about the latest research here.

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Sea-eagle takes a camera on a wild ride

Footage has revealed the journey that a camera, used to capture images of crocodiles, has gone on when it was picked up by a juvenile White-bellied Sea-Eagle. Check out the footage here.

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Rare owl spotted at Darwin Botanic Gardens

Rufous Owls been spotted at the George Brown Botanic Gardens in Darwin after a 2 year absence. Read about this exciting discovery of a pair of adults and a juvenille here.

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Sounding the call for Australia's favourite bird

BirdLife Australia staff member Sean Dooley gave a great interview on 702 ABC this morning. He chatted all things birds and our quest to find Australia's favourite. Take a listen here.

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How do cuckoos know they are cuckoos?

What a fabulous question! Given that baby birds imprint on their parents after they hatch, it does seem illogical that cuckoos don't do the same - so how do they know they are actually a cuckoo? This discussion with Dr Naomi Langmore from ANU explains how it happens.

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Powerful Owl expo a huge success

A recent program led by Gibberagong Environmental Education Centre, part of the NSW Department of Education, saw primary school kids learning about the Powerful Owl, its habitat and the conservation of the species. The program was run in conjunction with a number of partners including Taronga Zoo, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre, Habitat Stepping Stones, Ricoh and of course BirdLife Australia through the Powerful Owl Project.

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If birds had facebook...

Research resulting from a collaboration between Australian and UK scientists has shown that male birds that exhibit ‘shy’ social behavior are much more likely to join flocks of birds with a similar personality than their ‘bold’ male counterparts. However, shy birds also have fewer social partners than bold birds. Read more about the social networking of Great Tits.

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EagleCAM update - eggs infertile

Many of you may know of and watch BirdLife Australia's EagleCAM - a live streaming camera watching the nest of a pair of White-bellied Sea-Eagles at Sydney Olympic Park. Whilst the pair has had a lot of success in the past few years, raising a number of young, this year's result was not so rosey. After both the eggs failed to hatch, the decision was made to retrieve the eggs and run tests to determine what went wrong. A cherry-picker was brought in to reach the eggs that were in the nest, 20m off the ground.

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Penguin parade at risk

Philip Island’s famous penguin parade and French Island’s nationally significant shorebird feeding and roosting sites face the growing risk of a devastating oil spill, if Victoria’s controversial Western Port development is approved, new research shows.

Read BirdLife Australia's media release for more information.

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Kids boost food sources for threatened birds

Read all about how kids from 5 schools in Victoria are collecting seed and developing stringy-bark nurseries to establish food trees for the endangered Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo.

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Threatened species need real committment

Read the opinion piece by BirdLife Australia staff member Cara Shultz on why we need to act now to conserve our threatened species.

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Emerging from the shadows - the Night Parrot

Its been a big few days for Australian birders! A photo has emerged that seems to show one of our most elusive birds, the holy grail for birders, the Night Parrot. Read all about it in the Australian. There will be an unveiling of photographs, videos and calls at en event on Wednesday the 3rd of July at the Queensland Museum.

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Britain welcomes its first Crane egg in 400 years

A 24hr guard has been set up at a wetland centre in Western Britain to keep watch over a Crane's nest. In it is the first Crane egg laid in Britain in 400 years. Read about the story here

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Record bird sighting in Alice Springs

A rare Forest Wagtail has shown up in a twitcher's backyard in Alice Springs. It is the first time this species has been spotted on mainland Australia. Read about it here.

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First peregrine falcon chicks in Paris in 100 years

Paris has welcomed the hatching of the first clutch of Peregrine Falcon chicks in the capital in over 100 years. Read about the wonderful news that has conservationists jumping for joy here.

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Birds prefer red - and Aussie plants are taking notice

Australian researchers suggest that Aussie flowers are switching to scarlet hues through evolution because they are birds' favoured colours. Read all about the how and the why here.

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US study: Do birds really migrate south?

Citizen scientist in the US are contributing to our understanding of the migration patterns of birds. Check out the amazing discoveries from eBird - a collaborative project between the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the Audubon Society.

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Pitch perfect: fairy-wrens respond to other alarm calls

Fairy-wrens are a pretty special species of bird. Recent research has shown that Superb fairy-wrens can identify the alarm calls of other birds, even when they haven't heard them before. Read more about this on Science Alert.

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