Articles on Birds

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Carefully tracking the migration habits of birds like the Barn Swallow can help to conserve these species. Shutterstock

Why a proper record of birds in Africa is so important – for Europe

If Europe is going to reap the benefits of conservation measures at home, its experts need an understanding of where “their” birds migrate to when they head off to Africa.
Without help, Tasmania’s swift parrots could be wiped out within three generations. JJ Harrison/Wikimedia Commmons

Swift parrots need protection from sugar gliders, but that’s not enough

Tasmania's swift parrots are in trouble. Scientists are aiming to help them by keeping them safe from predators, but without better habitat protection, the species may go extinct.
On the prowl in the outback. Hugh McGregor/Arid Recovery

For whom the bell tolls: cats kill more than a million Australian birds every day

For the first time, researchers have estimated the toll taken by feral and pet cats on Australia's bird life - and the numbers are high enough to push several species towards extinction.
A new study, recently published in the journal Bird Conservation International, will help inform the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. Rob Davis

The good news and bad news about the rare birds of Papua New Guinea

A team of researchers led by Edith Cowan University have surveyed the PNG island of New Britain to see how the bird population is faring. There's good news and bad news.
Pied butcherbirds, such as this one, sing solos, duos and trios. © Duade Paton

Birdsong has inspired humans for centuries: is it music?

Is birdsong simply a hard-wired, functional, primitive sound – or could we call it 'music'? Australia's pied butcherbirds show there are surprising overlaps between birds' and humans' musical abilities.
These migratory pied imperial-pigeons in Far North Queensland, like many of Australia’s 22 species of native pigeons and doves, play an important role in our ecosystems but may be at risk from emerging viruses in domestic pigeons. Dejan Stojanovic

Are Australia’s native pigeons sitting ducks?

Two recently emerging viruses in domestic pigeons in Australia may pose a significant threat to Australia's 22 species of native pigeons and doves, many of which have crucial ecosystem roles.
The birds commonly seen in urban backyards of Australia are increasingly introduced species like this house sparrow, sharing a birdbath with a native red-browed finch. Wanda Optland

Is it really so wrong to care for an introduced bird species?

We all know how vital it is for our native bird species to thrive. But what if the only birds that visit your garden are introduced "pest" species? Many people feel these birds deserve some love too.

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