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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

6 December 2005

Government gets top marks on native bird protection


The Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, today welcomed the release of The State of Australia’s Birds 2005: Woodlands and Birds by Birds Australia, highlighting the gains the Australian Government has made in protecting native birds and pledging an extra $507,480 to help further protection.

The report presents an overview of the status of Australia’s woodlands birds, the major threats birds face and the conservation actions being taken to protect them.

"This report highlights the lead role the Australian Government is taking to protect habitat by listing threatening processes such as land clearing under federal environment law and forging important agreements with state and territory governments to address vegetation management," Senator Campbell said.

"This report allows governments, scientists and landholders to make better on-the-ground or policy decisions that help further protect Australia’s birds.

"Despite major gains made towards protecting birds, this is not a time to be complacent. For many species habitat loss - the single greatest threat to woodland birds - is still a real issue. The Australian Government is working with state governments and private landowners to help reduce this threat."

As well as contributing $22,000 to the Birds Australia report, the Government has recently pledged $411,780 to regional bird monitoring programmes to investigate important aspects of natural resource management and biodiversity conservation.

The Australian Government has also funded threatened species recovery teams and for over a decade the Threatened Bird Network. These groups work towards developing practical, on-ground projects that encourage community involvement in protecting threatened bird species. The Government has recently ensured continuation of the Threatened Bird Network with funding of $95,700.

"This community involvement is welcome, and shows that it is not just governments who are working to protect and conserve our native birds. This is demonstrated by the increasing numbers of private landowners protecting and restoring woodlands on their properties.

"It is heartening to see that we can all work together to ensure the continuation of our unique Australian birds," Senator Campbell said.

A link to the report is available online at www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity/publications/birds-05/index.html

Media contact:
Renae Stoikos (Senator Campbell's office) 0418 568 434 - 02 6277 7640

Commonwealth of Australia