Evidence of one of world's rarest birds found in Australia
 
, Posted on 14-Sep-2017


Evidence of one of world's rarest birds found in Australia

Sydney : A feather from one of the most elusive birds in the world has been found in South Australia, the first proof in more than a century that it lives there, wildlife experts said Thursday.

The "night parrot" ranks among the world's rarest avian species and was thought extinct until an intrepid Australian naturalist provided photo evidence of one in Queensland state in 2013.

It has since also been spotted in Western Australia.

The expert behind the Queensland sighting, John Young, and fellow ecologist Keith Bellchambers from the Australian Wildlife Conservancy have now shown it is also in South Australia.

The pair found a feather from the small, yellowish-green bird in the nest of a zebra finch around remote Lake Eyre while following up on blurry images from a camera trap in the area.

"Keith and I looked at many zebra finches' nests before finally an unmistakable small green feather appeared within the fresh base lining of one of the nests," said Young.

"People show excitement in many different ways, mine was to shake uncontrollably with numbing excitement and Keith's was sheer disbelief with his hands holding his head. An incredibly emotional time for both of us.

"In my eyes there was no doubt that this was the feather of a night parrot."

The freshness of the zebra finch nest indicates the feather may have been collected "within a few hundred metres in the past few weeks", Young added.

The curator of ornithology at the Western Australian Museum confirmed their find.

The next step is to map the distribution of the species, which was last recorded at Lake Eyre in 1883, and assess the population size using song meters and camera traps, said Young.

Researchers feared for decades that the nocturnal, desert-dwelling parrot was extinct, with no sightings between 1912 and 1979 and only a handful since, before the conclusive evidence in 2013.

In 2012, the Smithsonian Magazine rated it at number one among the world's five most mysterious birds.

Endemic to Australia, it is listed as endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, which estimates there are about 50-250 in the wild and declining.

AFP


Related News

Germany bans sales of children’s smartwatches
Nov 19

Germany bans sales of children’s smartwatches

Berlin : Germany’s telecoms regulator has banned the sale of “smart watches” that can be used by parents to check on their children, saying the devices violated Germany’s strict surveillance laws. The Federal Network Agency said it had already taken action against several firms that sell...

Read More
Xi offers support  for Saudi Arabia
Nov 19

Xi offers support for Saudi Arabia

Beijing : China has offered support for Saudi Arabia’s efforts to safeguard national sovereignty and achieve greater development. Speaking by telephone, President Xi Jinping told Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz that China’s determination to deepen...

Read More
Hariri promises to return for Independence Day
Nov 19

Hariri promises to return for Independence Day

Paris : Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri arrived in France yesterday from Saudi Arabia, where his shock resignation announcement two weeks ago sparked accusations that he was being held there against his will. Hariri is in Paris at the invitation of France’s President Emmanuel Macron, who is attempting...

Read More
UN climate negotiations not  derailed after US pullout
Nov 18

UN climate negotiations not derailed after US pullout

Bonn (Germany) : Negotiations to bolster the climate-saving Paris Agreement, crafted over two decades, closed in Bonn yesterday, deflated but not derailed by Donald Trump’s rejection of the treaty and defence of fossil fuels. The US President’s decision to yank the United States from the hard-fought...

Read More
Saudi Arabia recalls its ambassador from Germany
Nov 18

Saudi Arabia recalls its ambassador from Germany

Riyadh : An official source at Saudi Arabia’s ministry of foreign affairs said, in comments on the incorrect statements made by German foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel during a meeting with his Lebanese counterpart, that such remarks provoke the surprise and disapproval of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which...

Read More
Israel wants Saudi ties to defeat Iran
Nov 18

Israel wants Saudi ties to defeat Iran

Jerusalem : Israel’s military chief has given an “unprecedented” interview to a Saudi newspaper underlining the ways in which the two countries could unite to counter Iran’s influence in the region. Speaking to the Saudi newspaper Elaph, Gen Gadi Eisenkot described Iran as the “biggest...

Read More
Dubai Airshow reaches new heights
Nov 18

Dubai Airshow reaches new heights

Dubai : The doors close Thursday on another record-breaking Dubai Airshow, with the order book stood at almost 113.8 billion U.S. dollars.  Trade visitors to the event were up around 20 percent on the 2015 event, with some 79,380 people entering the purpose-built hall at Al Maktoum International Airport,...

Read More
Saudi anti corruption drive enters new phase
Nov 18

Saudi anti corruption drive enters new phase

Beirut/Riyadh : Saudi authorities are striking agreements with some of those detained in an anti-corruption crackdown, asking them to hand over assets and cash in return for their freedom, sources familiar with the matter said. The deals involve separating cash from assets like property and shares, and...

Read More
Iraqi forces recapture last IS-held town
Nov 18

Iraqi forces recapture last IS-held town

Baghdad : Iraqi forces yesterday captured the border town of Rawa, the last remaining town under Islamic State control, signalling the collapse of the group’s self-proclaimed caliphate. Rawa’s capture marks the end of Islamic State’s era of territorial rule over a so-called caliphate that it...

Read More
China’s futuristic library
Nov 17

China’s futuristic library

Tianjin : A futuristic Chinese library has wowed book lovers around the world with its white, undulating shelves rising from floor to ceiling, but if you read between the lines you’ll find something is missing. Those rows upon rows of book spines are mostly images printed on the aluminium plates that...

Read More