Rottnest Island rock parrot population increases to 16

Rottnest Island rock parrot.
Rottnest Island rock parrot population increases to 16
Rottnest Island rock parrot.

THE population of the Rottnest Island rock parrot – the namesake of Parakeet and Little Parakeet bays on the island – has increased to 16 thanks to the Bold Park Bird Banding Group.

Rock parrots are the only native parrots on the island but their population started decreasing in the 1940s because of cats and visitors removing the birds from the island.

In 2012 when there were only six birds left, the Bold Park Bird Banding Group teamed up with the Rottnest Island Authority (RIA) to monitor the species that are now individually marked with a coloured band on their left leg.

Visitors are also encouraged to report any sightings of the birds that are often seen in the morning.

RIA Conservation officer Cassyanna Gray said they had delayed weed control in feeding habitats at Bathurst, North Thomson and Caroline Thomson.

“This will allow time for the young rock parrots to fledge and move to other areas after which weed control can resume,” Ms Gray said.

Nest boxes and an artificial feeding station have also been installed.

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