Shorebird awareness right in time for school holidays

Residents of the Tweed flocking to the beach this holiday season will be reminded to take care around shorebirds, thanks to a program by Tweed Shire Council, NSW Local Land Services, Birdlife Northern Rivers and Tweed Landcare, and local Tweed schools.

Signs created by students of Fingal Head and Bogangar Public Schools are now out and about, warning keen beachgoers to stay a distance away and keep their dogs on leashes to protect the endangered birds.

Council’s Program Leader – Pest Management, Pam Gray, said it was especially important to give the birds space at this time of year.

Fingal_Head_PS_students094242_800 Fingal Head Public School students Urias Miller, Taj Krasna, Ruby-Lee Schofield, Tulasi Krasna, Molly Kirk and Jade Tatam-Lube show off their colourful signs to create awareness in the community about endangered shorebirds.

“Beaches and islands that were once isolated are now busy with boats, beach goers and their pets, which means the birds no longer have anywhere quiet to nest, feed or roost,” Ms Gray said.

“It’s important to keep this in mind while we enjoy the beautiful beaches of the Tweed these holidays.”

She said students enjoyed creating vibrant paintings with important messages that were turned into corflute signs and placed along beach entrances.

“Students learnt how to identify the birds that nest on their local beach and read any signage when entering the beach.

“The five species of beach-nesting birds on the Tweed Coast are the Australian Pied Oystercatcher, Sooty Oystercatcher, Beach Stone-Curlew, Little Tern and the Red Capped Plover, all of which are now in danger of extinction,” Ms Gray said.

“Students also learnt about their needs for survival and what we can do to help, for example, staying a fair distance away from the birds, staying close to the water’s edge when walking or jogging and away from soft sand where they nest and hatch and, importantly, to keep their dogs on leashes.

“It has been a wonderful program, and the students at each of the schools were great to spend time with.  They all worked really hard to make these signs.”

The shorebird breeding season extends from June until late March.

For more information on the Tweed’s beach nesting shorebirds, visit www.tweed.nsw.gov.au/BeachNestingBirds

-ENDS-

Courtesy Tweed Shire Council Newsroom

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