‘Charismatic’ bird declared extinct flies into NSW town | The Canberra Times

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The black-throated finch is famous for all the wrong reasons. Voted the 2019 Australian Bird of the Year, it is also known as the “Adani” finch, which has resulted in a long running battle between environmental groups, the public and the Adani Coal Mine project. Declared extinct in NSW by the state government in 2016, a new search is being led by ecologists at Bega Valley-based EnviroKey as part of a conservation initiative between the Finch Society of Australia and the Australian Society for Avian Preservation. The citizen science project, run from the NSW South Coast, is calling for any potential sightings from the community across their former range in the Inverell, Tenterfield and Glen Innes areas in the state’s north. “We are following up on these sightings as well as doing targeted searches in previously recorded locations,” said Steve Sass, principal ecologist of EnviroKey. While the species still occurs in central Queensland where it is listed as endangered, specialist private aviculturists around Australia have maintained small populations of black-throated finches for decades. “We are privileged those private aviculturists have done so well with this species in captivity, while in the wild, continued habitat loss and degradation have played critical roles in their demise,” Mr Sass, who is also a director of Tiny Zoo said “It is because of this untold hard work by private bird keepers that we are now very pleased and honored to have two colonies of black-throated finch at Tiny Zoo. “They are fantastic birds to watch, very charismatic, always on the move and very social , with lots of contact calling, head bobbing and general activity as a flock.” IN OTHER NEWS: Tiny Zoo will focus on increasing numbers in captivity to establish populations at other zoos across Australia in conjunction with the citizen science project, and explore potential opportunities for a future release program in northern NSW.”Black-throated finches will also play a special role in our mobile zoo display as part of our education program across our local schools,” Mr Sass said.

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