Roger Jaensch,Minister for Environment and Parks
The Tasmanian Government’s commitment to protecting and growing the Orange-bellied Parrot population continues to see results with 51 Orange-bellied Parrots returning to their breeding grounds at Melaleuca so far this season.
This means the wild population of the critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrot is the largest it has been for many years, with the highest number of successful returns in recent history – well ahead of the previous highest number of 35 birds returned in the 2014-15 season.
The combination of our traditional release of captive-bred adult birds in spring to boost breeding numbers at Melaleuca, the wild offspring successfully produced, and the release of juvenile birds in late summer meant more than 118 birds migrated from Melaleuca to spend winter on the mainland.
To have almost half of these birds return to Tasmania to breed is a great outcome and will help our ongoing efforts to boost the population while we continue to work with our partners to identify and address causes of mortality during the migration.
I’d like to say well done to the dedicated Orange-bellied Parrot Tasmanian Program staff and the National Recovery Team for their ongoing efforts to boost the flock size, which has certainly contributed to the result.
The most recent arrivals, combined with the release of captive-bred adult birds during spring, means there are now 77 Orange-bellied Parrots known to be at Melaleuca.
Efforts to try to ensure the species has the greatest chance of survival continue in collaboration with a range of government and non-government organisations across South Eastern Australia, and DPIPWE is part of the National Recovery Team that oversees the work outlined under the National Recovery Plan for the Orange-bellied Parrot.
We will continue to work collaboratively to continue protecting and growing the population of this iconic Tasmanian species and ensure its survival for the future.