Developed in partnership with PeeKdesigns, this project includes an education resource for teachers (NSW Stages 1 to 3), fact sheets on the three chosen parrot species and an online presentation that includes audio, video and an interactive word wall. The latter has been develop for ease of use on all technology platforms, including SmartBoards and tablets.
Funded by Riverina Local Land Services and supported by the Lachlan Fold Wildlife Action Group, the resource targets three key bird species located in the lower Lachlan Valley around the townships of Yenda, Rankin Springs and Naradhan. These are the glossy black cockatoo, Major Mitchell’s cockatoo and turquoise parrot.
Top feature image: Turquoise parrot chicks in a nest hollow (Chris Tzaros)
In New South Wales, the species is listed as Vulnerable and the Riverina population is Endangered. They only lay one egg per year, which makes their birth rate very slow. Their food trees (sheoaks) and nesting trees with suitable large hollows, are in limited supply across the Riverina.
The Major Mitchell’s cockatoo is named after Major Sir Thomas Mitchell, who was a surveyor and explorer of Southeast Australia during the 1800s. Due to habitat loss, they are listed as Vulnerable in New South Wales. They are often found feeding on seed on the ground, making them vulnerable to being preyed upon by feral cats and foxes.
Turquoise parrots were considered extinct in the wild by 1915 due to severe land clearing. The population began to recover by the 1920’s and they are still classified as Vulnerable today. They had formerly been caught in large numbers for the cage bird industry and were also shot for food, as a pie-filling.
The purpose of the education unit is to broaden student’s knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the bird life that exists in their local area and the importance of protecting habitat for wildlife. Students will participate in a range of learning experiences that are cross-curricular. Students will have opportunities to make connections to prior knowledge and extend it further.
Activities within the education resource include:
- Introduction to parrots
- Bird calls
- Bird beak design
- Bird study
- Hollows for habitat
- Imaginative and/or persuasive writing task
Alternatively CLICK HERE for the presentation.