Cockatoo movements to be tracked

One of the cockatoos takes flight.
One of the cockatoos takes flight.

NINE Baudin’s cockatoos were recently released into the wild as part of a tracking program to develop new knowledge about the endangered bird.

Researchers at Murdoch University and the Department of Parks and Wildlife released the rehabilitated cockatoos as part of the program, which will track the birds’ movements to breeding and foraging sites in WA’s South-West.

Very little is known about Baudin’s cockatoos and the study will help find information about their habitat and breeding.

Murdoch University Associate Professor Kris Warren said the project provided an exciting opportunity to understand the migratory patterns of the birds and the key threats facing the species.

“Up until now it has been very challenging to monitor flock movements and this tracking program might help increase our knowledge of this endangered species,” he said.

The birds will be fitted and monitored with numbered and coloured leg bands, a satellite transmitter and a solar powered GPS tracker. Murdoch University research team member Jill Shepard said they would use University of Amsterdam bird tracking system GPS trackers, which contain an accelerometer.

This was an Australian first in parrot species and would enable unprecedented collection of ecological data.

The birds will be tracked for a year with the devices being removed naturally over time.

The birds were released from a private property in Bedfordale.