Minding Miners and their role in shaping avian diversity


We have recently begun a large-scale research project examining the distribution and abundance of Noisy Miners on the New England tablelands. This project sees us working closely with the Office of Environment and Heritage and Northern Tablelands Local Lands Service. There are a number of ways in which we are approaching this research question:


- we recently held a workshop bringing together researchers with experience in trying to remove Noisy Miners from woodland patches. This was very successful and has lead to three potential methods of control that will all be trialled this coming spring. Contact Paul for more information.


- Candice Larkin has begun a PhD that will explore the interplay between Noisy Miners and raptors on the New England Tablelands: do raptors seek out or avoid miner colonies?


- Ahmad Barati has returned to the lab to help document Noisy Miner distribution, abundance and gene flow between colonies to help us understand colony-level movements and recolonisation events. These data will also be nicely augmented by the research that Farzaneh Etezadifar is currently undertaking.


- Finally, we were lucky enough to find a Regent Honeyeater on the Tablelands thanks to some of Stephen Debus' surveys; always a privilege to see such a rare and beautiful bird in the area. Hopefully the above projects can make life a little easier for them in the future when this drought eventually breaks! See below for some shots Paul managed to get in May.

For more information, contact Assoc. Prof. Paul McDonald