Bush Stone Curlew
Bush Stone Curlew (Burhinus grallarius) is a widespread native species found across most of Australia.
Here in the south-west they have seen a drastic reduction in population with one of the only sustainable groups found in the Dryandra Woodland near Narrogin.
In May 2012 Caversham Wildlife Park joined forces with Department of Parks and Wildlife and the Perth Zoo to help the eerie night call of the curlew become a more common sound heard in the south-west. 12 birds were taken to Wadderin Sanctuary in Narembeen and released into the wild. This was considered the first time curlews had been released back into the wild in WA.
In August 2013 the program was bought much closer to home. Whiteman Park had joined in on the action with the Bush Thick-knee considered a prime candidate for their Woodland Reserve. 6 birds were initially released into a soft release aviary within the reserve to get used to their new home and became wild. Once released the birds were able to move around Whiteman Park at their leisure with one pair finding a comfy home to raise 2 chicks behind the Village Café in 2014. A huge success for the program.
August 2013 also saw 6 of our CWP birds and 2 birds bred at Perth Zoo take a plane trip to Adelaide and became the first WA raised chicks to be released in SA and NSW with the birds taking part in AWC (Australian Wildlife Conservancy) Bush Thick-knee program and being released into both Yookamurra and Scotia sanctuaries to boost the released genetics.
With the original Whiteman Park birds doing extremely well in October and November of 2014, another 14 birds were released into the park to bolster numbers and hopefully see some more breeding action.
Bush Stone Curlews (also commonly known as Thick-knee's) are classified as Least Concern (IUCN Red List); they are common in northern Australia. However in Western Australian and New South Wales, there has been significant decline, mainly due to habitat loss and predation by foxes and cats.