Baby birds around Sydney are making the transition from nestling to fledgling, trying out their wings and learning to fly. Young birds are often seen on the ground throughout late spring and early summer and this is a normal stage in their transition to adulthood.
Centennial Parklands is a birdwatcher’s paradise with over 50 species known to nest in the Park’s ponds, swamps, tree branches and hollows. In recent weeks a large number of young bird species, including noisy miners, magpies, tawny frogmouths and rainbow lorikeets, have been seen learning to fly, with mixed success.
Several birds have been handed in to Parklands’ staff over this time, having been found on the ground and thought to be abandoned or sick. In almost all cases the birds were happy and healthy fledglings, taken from their parents by park visitors with the best intentions. By going back to the spot where each bird was found, Parklands staff were able to reunite the teenage chicks with their anxious parents.
The Parklands Environmental Officer, Amara Glynn, says she is heartened by people’s concern for wildlife but wants to educate visitors about bird behaviour and reduce unnecessary human intervention.
“Early summer is one of the best times to go birdwatching at the park when young birds are out and about, starting to fly and find their own food. Often you can see the parents hanging around somewhere close by keeping an eye on their young”
Amara’s advice to anyone in Sydney who sees a bird on the ground and is not sure what to do is to call Sydney Wildlife or WIRES for free advice.
“If the bird is uninjured the best thing to do is to leave it alone. Some young birds really shouldn’t be on the ground and may be orphaned or blown out of a nest, and can be placed in a shrub or somewhere above the ground out of harm’s way” said Ms Glynn.