Count birds in your back yard for Birdlife Australia.

A pair of rainbow lorikeets. Picture: Andrew Silcocks
A pair of rainbow lorikeets. Picture: Andrew Silcocks

BIRDLIFE Australia is urging people to take part in the second Aussie Backyard Bird Count by counting birds in their back yards this October.

Participants recorded more than 800,000 birds in the first event last year, with the rainbow lorikeet leading the tally in WA, NSW, SA and Queensland.

BirdLife Australia hopes people around the country will collectively spot a million birds in seven days when the count coincides with National Bird Week from October 19 to 25.

Kingsley resident Mike Bamford said he and wife Mandy took part in last year’s count because it was fun and helped with ongoing monitoring of birds in urban landscapes.

“Mandy and I are zoologists and we keep bird records in our garden anyway, but contributing to a nationwide survey event is a special opportunity,” he said.

“We have the two common (and introduced) doves, but we also get a range of honeyeater species and the willie wagtail,” he said.

“We have striated parda-lotes nesting in our carport and galahs in a nest box in our back garden.

“Occasionally we get birds that are less common in the suburbs – had a shining bronze cuckoo in the garden a few days ago.

“Perth has an incredibly rich avifauna and that is part of the fun of living here.”

A BirdLife Australia statement said data showed back yards in Australia had been shrinking since the 1990s, and populations of familiar birds such as magpies and laughing kookaburras had also declined.

It said the count was critical amid national and international concern for the welfare of those iconic birds.

To register, visit www. aussiebirdcount.org.au or join the #AussieBirdCount conversation.

For more information about Australian birds, visit www.birdlife.org.au.