Bundaberg Region residents are being asked to raise their eyes to the sky next month to help keep stock of local birds in this year’s Aussie Backyard Bird Count.
The annual bird watching event, held between 18-24 October, is run by BirdLife Australia as part of National Bird Week.
It is one of Australia's biggest citizen science activities and helps to collect a huge database of feathered friends from around the region.
Bundaberg Regional Council environment portfolio spokesperson Cr Wayne Honor said Bundaberg was ideal for bird watching because of the diversity of its natural areas.
He said Baldwin Swamp was an example of one local area which was home to an abundance of birds, which made the environmental reserve one of the best locations to capture their beauty up close and personal.
“As there is a variety of vegetation types including lakes, wetlands, bushlands, vine forest and grassy areas, Baldwin Swamp makes an ideal area for birds to thrive, and there have been more than 130 species recorded here,” Cr Honor said.
“It’s a great place for families to visit, take a walk and try to spot as many birds as possible during this annual event.”
Cr Honor said other great bird watching locations included the Botanic Gardens, Barolin Nature Reserve, Black Gully Nature Reserve in Gin Gin and Russo Nature Park.
He said during the 2020 Backyard Bird Count in the Bundaberg Region there were more than 22,000 individual birds counted throughout the week.
“More than 200 species were sighted in the 4670 postcode area and more than 100 species were spotted in both Childers and Gin Gin,” Cr Honor said.
“Among the list, residents spied the vulnerable Glossy Black Cockatoo, seasonally migrant species such as dollar birds, Australia’s largest duck the Musk Duck and Australia’s largest bird of prey the Wedge-tailed Eagle.”
The count is in its eighth year and takes contributions of more than 100,000 citizen scientists to create a snapshot of the state of Australia’s backyard birds and the population of different species.
Cr Honor said the data gathered was invaluable as it would help Council, the community and other organisations to make informed decisions to improve the natural areas and ensure local activities weren’t having a negative impact on birdlife.
“For example, through continued involvement in this initiative we can keep an eye on trends and even see whether or not a tree planting or weed removal project has had a positive effect on biodiversity,” Cr Honor said.
“The more involvement we get this year in the Aussie Backyard Bird Count from the community the better our future will be especially for the birds and wildlife.”
During the Aussie Backyard Bird Count locals are encouraged to go into their backyard or a local park or beach and observe and count the birds they see for 20 minutes and record the information on the free Aussie Bird Count app.
Find out more here.