Skip links and keyboard navigation

    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    JOINT STATEMENT
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
    Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection and Minister for National Parks and the Great Barrier Reef
    The Honourable Steven Miles

    New night parrot community discovered in central west Queensland

    JOINT STATEMENT

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection and Minister for National Parks and the Great Barrier Reef
    The Honourable Steven Miles

    Wednesday, March 22, 2017

    New night parrot community discovered in central west Queensland

    Scientists are confident they have the heard the calls of a new community of the elusive night parrot, one of Australia’s most endangered birds, in Central West Queensland.

    Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Environment Minister Steven Miles congratulated Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service officers and Australian Wildlife Conservancy ecologists on the ground-breaking discovery at Goneaway National Park.

    Ms Palaszczuk said the night parrot was thought to be practically extinct until its discovery at Pullen Pullen Reserve in remote Western Queensland in 2013.

    “The fact that scientists are confident they have heard the call of the night parrot at another Queensland location is terrific news,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

    “It comes off the back of AWC scientists finding a new community late last year in Diamantina National Park, just 50 kilometres west of Goneaway National Park.”

    Dr Miles said scientist would continue to work to establish the scope of the discovery.

    “This latest field survey led by AWC Senior Field Ecologist, John Young, was carried out in February 2017,” Dr Miles said.

    “While further investigation is required to obtain more evidence to determine the potential range of the known night parrot population, these initial reports are cause for excitement.”

    AWC Chief Executive, Atticus Fleming, said the night parrot calls were heard by John Young—the man who rediscovered the night parrot—and his partner, in a remote area in the national park. 

    “It is another exciting chapter in the night parrot story where each new discovery provides hope that the night parrot may be more elusive than endangered,” said Mr Fleming.

    “The expedition to Goneaway involved exploring likely night parrot habitat by foot and all-terrain vehicle in extreme heat and challenging conditions, highlighting the challenges involved in studying and protecting this nocturnal parrot. 

    “AWC has developed a habitat model which will guide further exploration by AWC ecologists of potential night parrot habitat in central west Queensland, in partnership with the Queensland Government, and elsewhere across Australia.”

    To protect the newly discovered population from poachers on Diamantina National Park, the Queensland Government has moved rapidly by declaring a Restricted Access Area over part of the park and providing increased management presence.

    A similar response is being considered for Goneaway National Park, however the park is more remote than Diamantina National Park, and the lack of formal road access significantly reduces the risk posed from public access to this remote area.

    Dr Miles said these steps were additional to the Queensland Government’s efforts in partnership with Bush Heritage Australia to secure the night parrot’s habitat at Pullen Pullen Reserve.

    “I look forward to a close working relationship between AWC, Bush Heritage, other landholders and government to protect the night parrot,” he said.

    Media contact:

    Katharine Wright, Minister Miles' office, 0422 580 342

    Jaselyn O’Sullivan, Australian Wildlife Conservancy 0472 822 492