Recently, Northern Gulf Resource Management Group teamed up with Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service to conduct a camera trap survey of Staaten River National Park to monitor the endangered golden-shouldered parrot population.
Towards the end of the dry season, creeks and rivers dry back to waterholes across northern Australia, drawing in wildlife from far and wide. In this particular waterhole, there were two resident freshwater crocodiles and many waterbirds that passed through, searching for food.
One of the largest birds we saw, the Jabiru (also known as the black-necked stork), was seen on the cameras several times as it walked the bank searching for food. The large size of the Jabiru means that they wouldn’t normally have too many predators to worry about, but when food is short and there is a hungry freshwater crocodile around, they have to be careful!
With its cover blown, the crocodile basks on the bank to recover as the brave Jabiru walks past at a safe distance….
However, a few hours later, the Jabiru returns. The brazen crocodile again launches itself from the water towards the long-legged bird…
…but the Jabiru has seen it all before and takes flight leaving the hungry crocodile empty-handed.
Fortunately for the endangered golden-shouldered parrot, crocodiles are one threat they don’t need to worry too much about. These strikingly beautiful parrots are predominantly threatened by changing fire regimes, grazing, feral animals and weeds.
These threats are being addressed through collaborative projects funded through the National Landcare Program which aim to mitigate known threats to the species across their range, which encompasses northern Gulf of Carpentaria and Cape York.
Above photo provided by Barry Lyon
This project is supported by Northern Gulf Resource Management Group, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.