Birds on Farms landholders & volunteers needed, VIC

Birds on Farms landholders & volunteers needed, VIC

BirdLife Australia’s Birds on Farms project engages landholders and the local community to monitor birds on farms and other rural properties across Victoria. This includes new properties, as well as those that were surveyed as part of the original Birds on Farms project back in the 1990s. The findings will evaluate the ecological condition of farms and how they change over time, identify potential priority sites for wildlife conservation actions and support, and produce guidelines for increasing woodland bird diversity in rural areas. It also provides landholders with a better knowledge and appreciation of the birds and their habitats on their properties.

We are seeking to engage additional Victorian landholders in the monitoring program, which involves establishing up to four 2-hectare survey plots per property within a variety of typical rural and farming habitats. These plots are surveyed for birds once every three months using the 20min/2ha survey method. We are therefore seeking expressions of interest from people that would like to have their property included as part of the program. The property does not need to be actively involved in agriculture, but is ideally at least 10 hectares in extent.

The bird surveys can be undertaken by landholders if they have the skills, interest and availability to do so. Or, alternatively, the surveys can be undertaken with the assistance of an external birdwatcher who will either undertake the surveys with the landholder (in a training/mentorship arrangement) or on their own on behalf of the landholder. Thus, to support the landholders, we are also seeking experienced birdwatchers. It’s an opportunity to contribute to this conservation project, and to also watch birds within areas that are inaccessible to the general public. Who knows what you will find!

We have opportunities all across Victoria for landholders and birdwatchers to be involved. If you are potentially interested, I can provide you with further background information, as well as bird identification booklets and other material. Our webpage also has more info, including links to the findings and recommendations of the original Birds on Farms program here.

To express interest or seek further info, contact Chris Timewell by email (woodlandbirds@birdlife.org.au) or by phone (03 9347 0757 extension 234).

We acknowledge the support of the Wettenhall Environment Trust and The R E Ross Trust for the Birds on Farms program.

Photo: Dean Ingwersen

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