Protecting the critically endangered Swift Parrot

It is estimated that up to 85 per cent of the critically endangered Swift Parrot population is at potential risk each season of being killed by Sugar Gliders.

The Sugar Gliders will eat Swift Parrot eggs, kill chicks and even adult Swift Parrots, drastically decreasing the reproductive success of the species.

Research has shown that sugar gliders can have a devastating impact on Swift Parrot breeding success, with statistics showing 79 per cent of nests and 65 per cent of breeding females on mainland Tasmania can fall victim to Sugar Gliders each year.

Following this revelation, the Commonwealth Government changed the listing of the Swift Parrot from “Endangered” to “Critically Endangered” in 2016.

Combating the threat of Sugar Gliders is critical, which is why the Hodgman Liberal Government is funding an innovative trial to protect the critically endangered Swift Parrot.

A total of $150,000 will be used to trial trapping Sugar Gliders in 80 nesting boxes in Tasmania, effectively creating safe zones for Swift Parrots to breed.

This trial is hoped to protect nesting Swift Parrots from Sugar Glider attacks and improve breeding outcomes of the species.

It was recently confirmed that Sugar Gliders are not native to Tasmania, but were brought here from Victoria in the early 1800s, and now lives throughout all the Swift Parrot’s breeding habitat in Tasmania.

Nest boxes will be placed in Swift Parrot breeding areas and monitored. When Sugar Gliders are trapped, they will be removed from the area and humanely euthanised.

The Hodgman Liberal Government is committed to protecting our threatened species, and ensuring the critically endangered Swift Parrot survives.

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