14 October 2022

How to celebrate Australia's Bird Week in Wagga

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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Environmental Education Officer Christina Reid and Environmental Officer Samantha Pascall

Environmental education officer Christina Reid and environmental officer Samantha Pascall ready for National Bird Week. Photo: Wagga Wagga City Council.

While Australia is home to more than 800 species of birds, the Wagga Wagga City Council local government area is home to 163 threatened and 53 vulnerable bird species.

In celebration of National Bird Week, local residents have the opportunity to get to know their feathered neighbours through various activities and conservation efforts.

The council is encouraging residents to get involved in National Bird Week from Monday 17 October to Sunday 23 October.

National Bird Week, organised by BirdLife Australia, is also boasting the ‘Aussie Bird Count’ – one of Australia’s biggest citizen science events.

The event allows people from across the country to get involved by heading out into their backyards, favourite outdoor spaces, or local parks to record the birds they see on the Aussie Bird Count app or website. People are also encouraged to look up the birds they don’t know.

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Wagga City Council said 19,268 birds were spotted in 2021 by 265 observers. One hundred and thirty-two bird species were identified, including 12 that were listed as threatened.

Council’s environmental education officer Christina Reid said the council had supported the national initiative for the past three years.

She said the initiative had provided important data on how many birds were in the environment.

Ms Reid said residents could help protect vulnerable species by taking part in the bird count, creating a bird-friendly garden to encourage birds to come to their backyard or even visiting one of Wagga’s prime bird-watching spots.

“By taking part, residents contribute to a vital pool of information through a user-friendly app,” she said.

BirdLife Australia brings you the Aussie Bird Count, one of Australia’s biggest citizen science events. Photo: BirdLife Australia.

“The beauty of the initiative is that while it’s great to access some of our amazing wildlife areas to record birds, the information you can garner from your own backyard is just as important.

“If you are unable to leave the house or can’t get away from work, you can record what bird species you can see from your window or a local park.”

Council’s environmental officer Samantha Pascall said Wagga and the surrounding locations were home to some of the prime bird spotting areas.

“Transformed from disused treatment ponds, Marrambidya Wetland is open all year round and provides habitat for migratory and non-migratory birds,” she said.

“Birramal Conservation Area is known to support the locally threatened superb parrot which is frequently spotted in the woodland areas.”

She added that Bird Week was also a perfect excuse to get the family together to install a birdbath.

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“Creating a bird-friendly garden provides year-round food, water and shelter for different bird species,” she said.

“Planting species native to our areas such as wattle and bottlebrush is the best addition to any bird-friendly garden as they will provide the right food and shelter for our native birds.”

How to take part in Aussie Bird Count?

Download the free Aussie Bird Count app or visit the website.

After signing up, simply stand or sit in one spot for 20 minutes and note the birds that can be spotted.

Council recommends dawn and dusk as the ideal times to spot the birds.

Residents can submit multiple counts from multiple locations.

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