Swift action funded to save parrot

Sweet: Nectar sources for the swift parrot will be increased. Photo: Chris Tzaros

Endangered swift parrots in the Costerfield and Rushworth areas have received a boost, with funding to increase their food source in the Goulburn Broken region.

The Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority has received almost $250,000 from the Federal Government to expand the abundance of nectar resources for the bird by revegetating sites with locally Indigenous trees and shrubs.

“This beautiful bird hails from Tasmania and, swift in both name and nature, crosses Bass Strait to visit the mainland each winter to feed from eucalypt forests including those at Costerfield, Rushworth and the Warby Ranges, near Wangaratta,” GBCMA project officer Janice Mentiplay-Smith said.

“On-ground outcomes of the project will include 65 hectares of revegetation at sites near Nagambie and in northern Victoria. Seven hectares of the revegetation will be dedicated to a seed production area.

“A seed production area, or seed orchard as they are sometimes called, is part of a long-term vision for this and other species, as it means future revegetation projects are easier to plan and implement when we know there is a dedicated seed source available.

“This helps us protect and enhance swift parrot habitat and essentially stock their pantry with nectar.”

The project includes engaging Traditional Owners, Taungurung and Yorta Yorta, to work on Country, which contributes to the breadth of the work and brings together elements of the region’s cultural and natural heritage.

Training interested people in citizen science skills to assist BirdLife Australia add to the swift parrot identification and location database is another component of the work.

To find out more about the parrot, visit