Birds Australia

Carlton, Australia

Birds Australia

Carlton, Australia
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Butchart S.H.M.,BirdLife International | Butchart S.H.M.,United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Center | Scharlemann J.P.W.,United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Center | Evans M.I.,BirdLife International | And 49 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of conservation efforts and now cover nearly 13% of the world's land surface, with the world's governments committed to expand this to 17%. However, as biodiversity continues to decline, the effectiveness of PAs in reducing the extinction risk of species remains largely untested. We analyzed PA coverage and trends in species' extinction risk at globally significant sites for conserving birds (10,993 Important Bird Areas, IBAs) and highly threatened vertebrates and conifers (588 Alliance for Zero Extinction sites, AZEs) (referred to collectively hereafter as 'important sites'). Species occurring in important sites with greater PA coverage experienced smaller increases in extinction risk over recent decades: the increase was half as large for bird species with&50% of the IBAs at which they occur completely covered by PAs, and a third lower for birds, mammals and amphibians restricted to protected AZEs (compared with unprotected or partially protected sites). Globally, half of the important sites for biodiversity conservation remain unprotected (49% of IBAs, 51% of AZEs). While PA coverage of important sites has increased over time, the proportion of PA area covering important sites, as opposed to less important land, has declined (by 0.45-1.14% annually since 1950 for IBAs and 0.79-1.49% annually for AZEs). Thus, while appropriately located PAs may slow the rate at which species are driven towards extinction, recent PA network expansion has under-represented important sites. We conclude that better targeted expansion of PA networks would help to improve biodiversity trends. © 2012 Butchart et al.

McAllan I.A.W.,46 Yeramba Street | Knight B.J.,Lot 5 | O'Brien R.M.,Museum Victoria | Ingwersen D.A.,Birds Australia
Australian Field Ornithology | Year: 2010

This note reviews records of the Painted Finch Emblema pictum in New South Wales and includes the first records of the species breeding in the State, noted as part of an influx in 2007-08. It is suggested that there has been a southward and eastward extension of the Painted Finch's range in recent decades.

Fitzsimons J.A.,Deakin University | Thomas J.L.,Birds Australia | Argeloo M.,Birds Australia
Forktail | Year: 2011

Distributional and habitat information on eight introduced bird species in north Sulawesi, Indonesia, is presented. The accounts are based on our observations as well as being gathered from published sources and unpublished trip reports. Three species (Sulphur-crested Cockatoo Cacatua galerita, Sooty-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus aurigaster and Red-collared Dove Steptopelia tranquebarica) have not previously been reported in north Sulawesi in the published literature, while the continued presence and status of Java Sparrow Padda oryzivora, Zebra Dove Geopelia striata and Rock Dove Columba livia was considered uncertain in the published literature. Further work is required systematically to document the distribution, status and spread of introduced species in the north and other parts of Sulawesi\-an imperative from both an economic and conservation perspective. © 2011 Oriental Bird Club.

Glover H.K.,Deakin University | Weston M.A.,Deakin University | Maguire G.S.,Birds Australia | Miller K.K.,Deakin University | Christie B.A.,Deakin University
Landscape and Urban Planning | Year: 2011

Buffers are often used to separate threatening stimuli, such as humans, from wildlife but with few exceptions buffer widths are based on little empirical information. We measured the distance at which a response (i.e., flight initiation distance [FID]) occurred among 28 of Australia's 36 regularly occurring shorebird species when presented with an approaching human (n=760 approaches in Victoria, south eastern Australia). Species differed in their FID, with species with higher body masses having longer FIDs (F1,26=36.830, p<0.001; R2=0.586). Mean FIDs for species were 18.6-126.1m (n=370 approaches by a walker). Depending on the species, FID was significantly influenced by the starting distance of the human approach, flock size, previous exposure to humans and stimulus type (walker, jogger, walker with dog). The FIDs reported suggest that current buffer designations will reduce disturbance to many but not all shorebird species tested. We also surveyed 295 residents and users of shorebird habitat, who reported an overall positive attitude to shorebird conservation, and generally regarded buffers as an appropriate way of managing disturbance to shorebirds (except for walkers, the commonest recreational activity). By overlaying the buffer widths nominated by respondents as appropriate for shorebirds with the FIDs exhibited by shorebirds, we present the efficacy of buffers from both social and ecological perspectives. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Maguire G.S.,Birds Australia | Duivenvoorden A.K.,Deakin University | Weston M.A.,Deakin University | Adams R.,Deakin University
Bird Conservation International | Year: 2011

Artificial chick shelters might improve productivity of beach-nesting birds threatened by anthropogenic disturbance. We investigated the efficacy of three different chick shelter designs against four criteria: accessibility to chicks over time, thermal insulation, conspicuousness to beach-goers, and practicality (cost and ease of transport). One design ('A-frame') was selected because it offered the greatest thermal insulation, was the least conspicuous, most cost effective, and performed equally well in terms of accessibility. We deployed these artificial shelters on Hooded Plover Thinornis rubricollis territories where broods were present (n = 11), and compared the behaviour and survival rate of chicks to that at control sites (n = 10). We were unable to discern any difference in the behaviour of broods when artificial shelters were available. However, the survival rate of chicks to fledging was 71.8% higher where an artificial shelter was provided (n = 21 broods). This was validated by analysing data from a larger sample of broods monitored as part of an active volunteer-based management programme; shelters conferred a 42.8% increase in survival to fledging (n = 81 broods). Thus, artificial shelters have the potential to increase survival rates of threatened shorebird chicks, though the mechanisms through which survival is increased require further investigation. © Copyright BirdLife International 2010.

Carter M.,30 Canadian Bay Road | Silcocks A.,Birds Australia
Australian Field Ornithology | Year: 2010

This note records the occurrence of a Siberian Peregrine Falcon Falcoperegrinus calidus on Christmas Island, Indian Ocean, in January 2010: apparently the second record for Australian territory of this migratory, Arctic subspecies. This is also the fifth record of a vagrant Peregrine Falcon on Christmas Island, although the others could not be identified to subspecies.

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