Gang-gang project update – March 2014

Gang-Gang map with reporting rate 2013

Project launch

The Gang-gang project was officially launched by Ian Fraser, Canberra’s own well-known naturalist  at Corroboree Park, Turner on Thursday 13th March with various media outlets in attendance.  Observations have been collected since the start of February and at the time of writing there have been over 373 observations placed on-line through the COG-ALA portal from over 88 contributors whilst an additional 58 observations have been received on paper forms.


Of the 88 contributors 50% have entered a single observation possibly indicating the early stage of the project and/or a distribution of occasionally observed individuals.  It will be interesting to see if this picture changes with the seasons. So far the seeds from Eucalyptus spp, Liquidamber and Chinese Pistachio appear to be the flavour of the moment.

Interesting sightings; one off the east coast of Argentina and another off the east coast of Japan; all easily fixed and explainable with the addition of a minus sign to the record or the same longitude coordinate as the latitude coordinate corrected.  No names will be mentioned!


The first Muster was held during the week 19-25 February.  The Muster was based on COG’s long-running Garden Bird Survey with reporting required each day rather than once a week.  So far 30 sheets have been received covering 22 suburbs with one form received from outside the urban area.  It was most encouraging to receive 14 forms with no observations.  This invaluable information will allows us to map in some detail the distribution of Gang-gangs within urban Canberra. The largest number reported was 14 on Friday 21st February at a site in Red Hill.  The next Muster will be held during the week May 21-27th and work is underway to engage school and scout groups in the May Muster. To assist this work, could COG members with contacts in their local school or scout groups please forward the contact details for environmentally motivated teachers or scout leaders to . Members may also be part of other groups (like U3A, Walking for Pleasure, Wednesday Walkers etc.) who may be interested in the GG survey.

Historical distribution of Gang-gangs

The map above shows the Gang-gang reporting rate over the period 1st July 2003 to 30th June 2013, the larger the dot the higher the reporting rate which takes into account the number of COG Observation Sheets submitted for each cell and the number of those sheets that report Gang-gangs.  A large dot does not necessarily mean hot spots for Gang-gangs.  Thanks to Steve Wallace for producing this map from data extracted from the COG database.

Do you know of any breeding activity?

Of particular importance for the project will be to locate breeding sites within the survey area.  If anyone knows of breeding sites could they please let us know via  All information will be kept confidential so please DO NOT enter the location of known nesting sites on the COG-ALA on-line data entry portal. Possible breeding sites are those where birds are seen to frequently inspect hollow or are seen to frequently visit tree hollow during the breeding season.  Sites where adults have been observed feeding young of where birds have been observed hollow inspecting very occasionally or out of the breeding season do not indicate breeding sites .

If you have any queries or wish to report problems please send an email to:


The GG survey team