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Surveys of large urban birds
Sulphur Crested Cockatoo and Australian White Ibis

Dr John Martin, wildlife ecologist at the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, outlines two long running citizen science project in Sydney that use Wingtags for durable and readily viewable identification of the wild birds and does not require recapture or the errors in reading that can occur with the more complex leg banding rings. The research has been underway for five to eight years and the Ibis studies have longer banding records to draw on. The projects both rely on the interest and input from the community in reporting sightings of the birds and the different perceptions many people have of the Cockatoos compared with the 'nuisance' Ibis seem to affect their interest in reporting sightings. This is a collaborative project with the Australian Museum and University of Sydney. 
The Australian White Ibis wing tag research in Sydney

Natural Selection: Dr John Martin, wildlife ecologist at the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, outlines a citizen science project with a focus on the Australian white ibis. The Wingtag project started in 2008 but there had been banding of birds for eight years before that. Wing tags are better than leg bands because they are more visually obvious and it is easier to remember a three digit number and one colour. Sightings can be reported using the same app used so successfully with the Royal Australian Botanic Gardens in Sydney study of Sulphur crested cockatoos (Google wingtag) on an Apple or android phone. Birds in Hyde Park and the Royal Botanic Gardens get all their food from those small green spaces and don’t move from those sites. Other birds fly 30km to a landfill site because the food resources they provide are so rich. The Australian white ibis is an Australian native but was formerly incorrectly thought to be an exotic species, the African sacred ibis) and is still recovering from this incorrect labelling as an alien species and therefore competition with our own wildlife. While locals may dislike the boldness of some ibis in parks, they are quite thrilling for our international visitors who can so easily approach and feed these elegant birds in public parks!
Brush Turkey join the Wingtags flock

In Site Giving InsightDr John Martin, wildlife ecologist at the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, explains the branching out of the Wingtag citizen science project to include the Australian Brush-turkey. Brush-turkeys are an old world bird. The male birds build mounds that look like a pile of mulch (5m round and 1m high) which incubates the eggs that females lay. This is an old nesting behaviour that modern birds don’t use. 
New Settlers

Professor Darryl Jones, urban ecologist from Griffith University, outlines how white ibis have adapted to living in Brisbane. Like lots of Australian birds Australian white ibis are nomadic and move wherever the conditions are correct. It was only 15 years ago that the first white ibis turned up in parks in the middle of Brisbane. Recently Brisbane Airport wanted to know if the unwanted ibis there were coming from a rubbish tip (aka transfer station) 11km away.
Ibis and people in parks: who interacts with whom?

Professor Darryl Jones, urban ecologist and Deputy Director, Environment Futures Research Institute at Griffith University, explains a new survey into urban ibis in Brisbane, one with some surprising results. Indya Wilson spent hundreds of hours of quietly watching and recording the way people and ibis interact and found that overwhelmingly the birds were approached and encouraged by people. The myth of bold and aggressive food stealing by the ibisseems to be another example of the bad press these natives have long endured - including for some decades, of being regarded as an invasive alien import.
How are our birds of prey faring

Professor Darryl Jones introduces a new citizen science project for the Gold Coast examining four of their common birds of prey

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