Bird Previously Thought Extinct Found Very Much Alive

Aussie Birdwatchers rejoiced after spotting a bird that was previously thought to be extinct

Broome Bird watchers snapped a photo of the brilliantly beautiful and elusive: Night Parrot in Western Queensland. The Night Parrot is so rare, Aussie bird watchers thought it was extinct until about three years ago.

The team who spotted the mysterious bird describes it as a “fat budgie:” the chair of the Night Parrot Recovery team: Allan Burbidge has never actually seen one. It's a species that is really hard to detect," he says.

Adrian Boyle one of the lucky bird watchers to photograph the bird was elated:

"I grew up knowing that the bird was extinct and didn't expect to ever see one in my life, I just knew it was a fairly small green and yellow parrot that used to live in deserts in spinifex countries that was sort of the unseeable, that it was the holy grail if you get to see one."

The team who discovered the bird travelled to Western Queensland after poring through detailed aerial maps, camping out and listening out for the birds call at night. Nigel Jackett, a warden at the Broome Bird Observatory, says:

"The night before, we actually heard the birds, which sounded very unusual to us actually. We couldn't sleep, we were just pondering the question: 'what was making this noise? There were quite a few of them, there was at least five or six of these things calling around us, so we didn't know what they were, but we saw the habitat was beautiful and thought that they could be night parrots."

The group’s find is the first confirmed sighting of the night parrot in nearly a century.

“Having a photograph now, being absolutely certain [about the birds' presence], hopefully our regulators will be able to use that, So if anyone's sceptical about they can say: 'We have definite evidence that they're in Western Australia and we really do need to survey adequately for them where there are development proposals.'"

Header: Image Bruce Greatwich

Related Articles

Discuss this article

Newsletter

Never miss a Nat Geo moment

Your email address
Submit