EMERGENCY PLAN

Image by Kelly Hammond

12-point Emergency Plan

All three South West Black Cockatoo species are threatened with extinction. Current laws, policies, initiatives, and Recovery Plans are falling well short of what is needed to stop their decline and to protect and recover their populations.

This 12-point Emergency Plan has been developed in consultation with scientific experts and Traditional Owners and we are calling on the WA Government to implement it as a matter of urgency.

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PROTECT

Man with  a sign like a black cockatoo in a cleared minesite

Protect native forests

Proposed bauxite mining expansions and major lithium mining exploration applications, particularly in the Northern Jarrah Forests and Jarrah and Wandoo woodlands, threaten to devastate some of the last populations of Black Cockatoos. No new mines should be authorised in native forests and woodlands, especially those that are habitat for Black Cockatoos.

Cockatoo eating a pine cone

Protect the Gnangara pines

The Gnangara Pine plantation is a lifeline to the Ngolyenoks / Carnaby’s on the Swan Coastal Plain. The remaining trees must be retained until native food supplies for the birds can be restored. The latest Population Viability Analysis found that clearing the remaining pines is likely to cause a local starvation event and would more than halve the Perth – Peel population of Ngolyenoks.

Cockatoo in a Banksia tree

Protect the Banksia woodlands

Banksia woodlands are a vital source of food for Black Cockatoos, but we are rapidly losing what’s left of them. Plans for partial habitat protection in the Perth-Peel region were cancelled despite clearing for urban growth being a key source of habitat loss. These plans must be improved and reinstated.

Aerial view of Wheatbelt woodlands

Protect the Wheatbelt woodlands

With so little of this key breeding area for Black Cockatoos left, it is critical that we protect all remaining woodlands and significant individual trees (especially Salmon Gum and Wandoo). More than 90% of the wheatbelt has already been cleared and all remaining native vegetation is critically important for the endangered Ngolyenoks /Carnaby’s.

CREATE

Planting a seedling



Create financial incentives

To achieve the landscape-scale restoration needed to save the Black Cockatoos, financial incentives must be made available for farmers and landholders to retain habitat, (especially large trees) and undertake habitat restoration projects. As well as saving Black Cockatoos this offers multiple co-benefits including for farm productivity, shade and evaporation rates, river health and biodiversity.

2 Women with seedlings

Create annual restoration targets

Ninety per cent of the forests and woodlands in the South West Global Biodiversity Hotspot have been cleared or severely degraded in the past 200 years. These forests and woodlands must be restored on par with targets recommended in the United Nations ‘30by30’ initiative where over 100 countries (including Australia) agreed to cover 30% of their land in natural habitat by 2030.

Netted orchard

Create safer orchards

Illegal shooting of Ngolak / Baudin’s Cockatoos is a major driver of their decline. To stop this illegal shooting, programs must be urgently established to require orchards to be netted to stop Black Cockatoos from feeding on commercially-grown fruit.

Black Cockatoo dead on road

Create safer roads

Hundreds of Black Cockatoos are killed each year by vehicle strikes as they feed from grain spilled from trucks. Laws and incentives must be put in place that require trucks to be sealed to avoid this disaster.

Review

Stacks of cut logs

Review forest thinning

Thinning forests can spread dieback, compact soil, remove critical habitat and make forests more fire-prone. It must be strictly limited to mine-site rehabilitation and immature regrowth and be designed and implemented according to adaptive management and ecological restoration principles.

Two Ngolaks in a field

Review agricultural sprays

Toxic farm sprays on canola and other grains that Black Cockatoos eat can cause sickness and death, including as a result of Cockatoo Hindlimb Paralysis Syndrome (CHiPS) in Ngolyenoks / Carnaby’s. The use of these sprays needs to be reviewed to protect remaining populations of Black Cockatoos.

Man crouched on burnt forest floor

Review broadscale prescribed
burning

The timing, frequency, intensity, and location of fires can all have major detrimental impacts on Black Cockatoos. Fire is known to destroy critical nesting hollows and food supplies.  Smoke alone can kill birds, including chicks, and is especially dangerous in breeding season.

Bulldozer shifting soil

Review offsets

Offsets allow the destruction of critical habitat without adding to habitat and should not be allowed. We need to be protecting, restoring, and creating habitat – not destroying it.