March meeting

Wed 13 March 2024 07:30pm

Lisa Fortana and Brendah Nyaguthii – our experiences at the Brisbane Australasian Ornithological Conference
Michael Lenz - A very interesting lake – 41 years of counting birds at Lake Bathurst (“Bundong”).

The March 2024 meeting will be a normal face-to-face one held at our usual venue. As COVID is still widespread in the community attendees should heed social distancing and good hygiene practice etc, and use their common sense and stay home if they have COVID symptoms. Mask wearing is recommended.

Please note that construction is currently occurring around the Gabriel Drive parking area, and access to there may not be available. If the gate is locked, please use the Chapel Drive entrance and park there. To get to the Multi-media Centre from there, please proceed keeping the Chapel and the next two buildings to your left until you reach a gap between the buildings, go through this and you will see the Gabriel Drive parking area in front of you (see the map on COG’s web site at ). A torch for finding your way back to your car after the meeting is also recommended.

For the March meeting there will be three shorter presentations, the first two being presentations by the two ANU Ph D students sponsored by COG/Canberra Birds to attend the Australasian Ornithological Conference (AOC) in Brisbane at the end of November 2023.

First Lisa Fortana will introduce herself and her Ph D project (Cognitive ecology in parrots, with a special focus on the Sulphur crested Cockatoo), with a special emphasis on the paper she presented at the AOC (investigating innovativeness in wild cockatoos using specific cognitive tasks). She will conclude with a summary of her experience in Brisbane and how this has helped her from an academic point of view.

Next Brendah Nyaguthii will first talk about her experience at the AOC Conference, followed briefly by what her poster was about (cooperative breeding behaviour in a plural breeder; the Vulturine Guineafowl), and finally, a short overview of what her Ph D with choughs is about i.e., multilevel societies as well as their movement behaviour outside of the breeding season.

The third slightly longer presentation will be by Michael Lenz on “A very interesting lake – 41 years of counting birds at Lake Bathurst (“Bundong”).

In early 1980 surveys of the waterbirds at Lake Bathurst commenced. The surveys were conducted on behalf of COG. Michael conducted/organised monthly visits to the lake until early 2021. His talk will explain the key features of the lake and provide a very brief overview of visiting and breeding waterbirds. The spread of the weed Serrated Tussock has had a major impact on the lake environment. Since 2016 Lake Bathurst is included in Birdlife Australia’s network of Key Biodiversity Areas (KBA). In late 2023 COG/Canberra Birds established a new team to continue with visits to the lake.

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