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The City Of Melbourne Is On The Look Out For Adorable Superb Fairy-Wren Birds

Nicole de Souza Nicole de Souza - Staff Writer

an image of the superb fairy-wren bird for reference

Simply superb!

Are you a bird watcher? Well, the City of Melbourne needs your help! In this citizen science project, you’ll help the city by tracking the movement patterns, sightings and behaviour of adorable little birds known as the superb fairy-wren. This project will help the City of Melbourne plan strategic vegetation works for the future. This study will help improve the habitat and ecological connectivity for small birds within the city.

Superb fairy-wren project

Do you live 5km around Parkville? Do you love birds? Then you’re encouraged to take part in this project! During your daily lockdown exercise period of two hours, you’re encouraged to walk around Royal Park, Princes Park and Melbourne Cemetery and take note of fairy-wren sightings, locations, movement patterns and behaviour.

“What better way to beat the lockdown blues than by getting outside and using part of your two-hour exercise period to help us study the curious little fairy-wren,” said Lord Mayor Sally Capp.

“We’re calling on local bird watchers, both budding and experienced, to help us gather information which will directly contribute to the ongoing health and wellbeing of our local birdlife,” she added.

What are you looking for?

Superb fairy-wrens are little birds with round bodies and a long upright tail. Adult males have that beautiful blue and black plumage that they’re famous for. Their colouring is brightest during breeding season, from spring to summer. On the other hand, non-breeding adult males and females have a greyish brown plumage.

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These birds are common in urban parks and gardens that have dense shrub cover. They live in small groups of three to five birds. Fairy-wrens forage for insects on the ground and below shrubs, so they are vulnerable to predators and habitat loss from urbanisation.

How to get involved

Go on a daily walk and see what you can find. After that, submit your sightings through an online form or through the Birdata App. Submissions are open between September and November.

“By better understanding the wren population around Parkville, we will be able to better target our environmental projects in the area,” said Councillor Rohan Leppert. “If you live in the areas surrounding Royal Park and Princes Park, I would encourage you to hop online and take part in this project.”

Click here for more information about the project.

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