1 Orange-bellied Parrot Survey Instructions Thank you for taking part in the ongoing search for Orange-bellied Parrots (OBPs). The success of our research and conservation efforts for this critically endangered species is largely dependent on data collected by you. Current research into the site and habitat use of OBPs is heavily reliant on the timely reporting of any OBPs so that the exact site can be re-visited for follow-up observation and measurement of habitat attributes. Orange-bellied Parrots are the focus of this survey, but we also seek records of other Neophema parrots, namely Blue-winged Parrots and Elegant Parrots, because these species are often found in association with OBPs and have similar ecological needs. We may be able to learn more about OBPs from analysing the records of the more common congeneric species. Please read these instructions before commencing your survey. Remember to take these instructions and the record forms with you on your field survey. Field survey: what to take OBP record sheets and these instructions Binoculars Spotting scope/tripod Map of your allocated site GPS unit Mobile phone Pens/pencils Clipboard Notebook Field first aid kit Appropriate footwear and clothing (inc. wet weather gear) Although we encourage survey participants to be intrepid, always ensure that the safety and well-being of yourself and those around you comes first. Working in coastal areas brings with it many dangers cliffs, boggy mud, soft sand, changing tides, biting insects, bad weather and sun glare are just a few to consider. Always be properly prepared for the prevailing conditions. Check weather reports prior to the survey. Up-todate weather and tide information can be accessed over the internet: Weather forecasts, warnings and observations: Tidal predictions:
2 Interpreting the record form (Please complete a record form for every site surveyed, even if no OBPs or other Neophema parrots were recorded) SIDE 1 Personal details: Complete your full name, phone and details. Date and Time: Enter the date on which the survey was conducted, and the time you began and completed your search. Site name and location: Enter the name of the site you surveyed, the distance and direction from the nearest town, and the State. Provide accurate positional data for the centre of your survey site, either Latitude and Longitude or Easting and Northing. These readings can be obtained by a GPS unit or by reading from a map. Record the map datum used, either Australian 84/66 or WGS 84 (GCD), and the map zone. If you are uncertain about providing a reading, please mark the survey area on a map of the site. If you locate OBPs, please record the coordinates for the precise site and if possible mark the site in some way (e.g. with flagging tape), to ensure that the exact site can be re-visited for follow-up observation and measurement of habitat attributes. Weather: Record the weather conditions by circling the most appropriate category for temperature, wind, rain and cloud (this requires an estimate only). Area survey coverage: Record the number of observers who conducted the search and estimate either the distance walked (kms) or the area covered (ha) for each site that was actively searched for OBPs. Number of OBP sighted: Record the total number of OBPs observed at the site, and if seen, record the precise time. Orange-bellied Parrot data: For each OBP sighted, please try to the best of your ability to differentiate between adults (males and females) and juveniles (males and females). For guidance, see the Neophema parrots identification brochures on our website birdlife.org.au If age/sex is unknown, please record in the column provided. If any OBP are colour-banded, please try to observe the colour-band combinations and note the letter printed on the band (letters only appear on one band). If only a partial reading is obtained (i.e. only one leg band was recorded), the bands were not seen, or the bird was un-banded, please record in the appropriate column. If any other Neophema parrots are seen, record the total number of birds and estimate the percentage of adults and juveniles. If percentages are unknown, please tick the unknown column provided. For other seed-eating birds, such as European Goldfinch, European Greenfinch and Common Starling, please record total numbers if possible. Example of a colour-banded OBP left leg (blue H), right leg (green).
3 H SIDE 2 (only complete if OBP sighted) How was OBP identified?: Please circle the relevant option(s) indicating the method used to identify the bird as an OBP. If photographs were taken, please submit to BirdLife Australia (address at bottom of form). Indicate how confident you were, as a percentage estimate, in identifying OBP. Activity of bird (s): Please circle the appropriate option(s) indicating the activity being undertaken by the bird(s) seen. If foraging, record whether the bird(s) were feeding alone (or with other OBP), within a flock of other Neophema parrots, adjacent to a flock of other Neophema parrots, or with any additional species (please list). Food resources used: If OBPs were observed feeding, please try to identify what they were feeding on and tick the relevant option(s) in the boxes provided (which have been sorted into broad habitat categories). If food sources other than those listed were being used, please record the plant species under other. If the food resource was not identified, please tick unknown, and if possible, please either photograph the species or collect a sample and submit with your survey form. The following reference sources may be useful to aid plant identification: Auld, B. & Medd, R Weeds An illustrated botanical guide to the weeds of Australia. Inkata Press, Melbourne. Lamp, C. & Collet, F A Field Guide to Weeds in Australia. Inkata Press, Melbourne. Lazarides, M. & Hince, B. (eds.) CSIRO Handbook of Economic Plants of Australia. CSIRO, Australia. McCann, I The coast and hinterland in flower. Victorian National Parks Association, Melbourne. Habitat type: Record the general habitat type that OBP were occupying. Multiple options may be ticked if birds were using more than one habitat type. Site topography: Record the general topography of the site being occupied by OBP. Multiple options may be ticked if birds were using more than one category. Site map/additional notes: If OBPs were recorded, please draw a sketch map of the site and clearly mark the precise location of the bird (s). Alternatively, use a photocopy of a map sheet. Please record any additional notes arising from your OBP sighting in this section of the form.
4 Volunteer insurance BirdLife Australia is insured for any officially organised and controlled activities conducted by its constituents. Our two main policies cover Public Liability and Personal Accident and Injury, and some of the details of these policies are outlined below. Important points to note before assuming you are covered by insurance: Duty of Disclosure: the insurer can refuse to pay up if it is unaware of the activity you were conducting when the claim arose. This means that all surveys you conduct for Orange-bellied Parrots are under the direction of the relevant BirdLife Australia project officer. Agreement: to be covered by Public Liability insurance, all volunteers or participants should have entered into an agreement with BirdLife Australia before they participate in any activity, whether or not they are already members. This agreement should make it clear that you will abide by all relevant safety and OH&S standards (see Note 3 below), be signed by yourself, and carry the BirdLife Australia brand. OH&S standards: standard insurance policies contain exemptions if all reasonable care has not been taken by the insured. This means that you should not consider yourself covered if your activities do not conform to the applicable OH&S laws and standards. BirdLife Australia branded documents are produced for each regular activity which outlines the OH&S and safety protocols for that activity, and generally form the basis of an agreement as per Note 2. Age Exemptions: please be aware of the age exemptions noted below in the Personal Accident and Injury Policy. In summary, inform BirdLife Australia if you are participating in OBP surveys, make sure they are controlled by the relevant BirdLife Australia representative(s), and do anything you can to improve and document safety procedures. Public Liability Insurance - this policy insures BirdLife Australia against legal costs, expenses and liability to pay damages for an unintended or unexpected event in the course of its business. Public liability for loss of or damage to goods (except electronic data/software) not owned by but in BirdLife Australia s possession/control is also covered. Personal Accident and Injury Insurance - this policy covers volunteers aged working in Australia who are engaged in officially organised and controlled BirdLife Australia activities, or travelling to such activities. Exclusions: There is no cover for volunteers under 18 or over 80, and no cover for Permanent Total Disablement for people over 65 years. Again, the policy only applies to volunteers involved in officially organised activities which are under the control of BirdLife Australia. Exclusions apply to claims arising from intoxication, self-harm etc, and failure to apply all reasonable care.
5 Personal safety and first aid Due to the nature of the fieldwork and projects which volunteers are likely to become involved in with threatened birds, it is extremely important that volunteers understand health and safety issues. In particular, volunteers should understand their role in staying safe: Attitude: maintaining a safe attitude, and ensuring that you are not endangering your own health or safety or that of any other person in the workplace. Compliance: with any safety directions given to you by your supervisor. Reporting: all potentially dangerous situations or practices to your supervisor, all injuries and "near misses" to your supervisor, and completing the appropriate Incident Report Forms (obtained from supervisor). Visitor Awareness: always considering visitor safety in your actions. Clarification: always asking your supervisor if you are unsure about any part of your work tasks. The responsible authority for an activity (i.e. project supervisor or agency) has a duty of care for volunteers similar to that which applies to paid staff. Guidelines developed will reflect an authority s particular standards, as well as State and Federal occupational health and safety regulations. One of the biggest risks in the bush is getting lost. It is therefore important that, as a minimum, you should carry the following if working away from camp or a vehicle - jumper, waterproof clothing, compass & map (or GPS), water, matches, whistle, food, pressure bandage, and notepad/pencil. If you do become lost, calmly assess your options and either stay where you are and attract attention (with whistle, fire or smoke, or cooees), or if confident that you have an unmistakable barrier/feature (eg road, river) that you can reach easily and not overshoot, move to it (leaving markers along the way for retracing steps if necessary, and for searchers to see). The other major risk in the Australian bush is snakebite. Venomous species of snake in Australia include the taipan, death adder, tiger snake, brown snake, copperhead, and red-bellied black snake. Most Australian snakes are defensive by nature and will usually sense your approach and move out of the way, and most bites occur when people are trying to move or pick a snake up. If a snake bite occurs, follow these rules: DO NOT wash or suck the bite. Traces of venom are needed for use with venom identification kits. DO apply a crepe bandage firmly to the limb utilising the pressure-immobilisation first aid technique, particularly over the bite site. The lymphatic system is responsible for systemic spread of most venom. This can be reduced by the application of a firm bandage (as firm as you would put on a sprained ankle) over a folded pad placed over the bitten area. While firm, it should not be so tight that it stops blood flow to the limb or congests the veins. Start bandaging directly over the bitten area, ensuing that the pressure over the bite is firm and even. If you have enough bandage you can extend towards more central parts of the body, to delay spread of any venom that has already started to move centrally. A pressure dressing should be applied even if the bite is on the victim s trunk or torso. Immobility is best attained by application of a splint or sling, using a bandage or whatever to hand to absolutely minimise all limb movement, reassurance and immobilisation (e.g., putting the patient on a stretcher). Where possible, bring transportation to the patient (rather then vice versa). Don't allow the victim to walk or move a limb. For more information check out the Australian Venom Research Unit website: avru.org/firstaid/firstaid_snake
6 DO get the victim to a hospital or medical centre, preferably by an ambulance that has resuscitation facilities and anti-venom for snakebites. It is better to keep the bitten person still and bring transport to them than for them to move. DO NOT cut the bitten area. DO NOT use a tourniquet. DO NOT remove the bandage this will result in spread of the venom through the system. If the bite is on the head, neck or back, APPLY firm pressure if possible. Getting injured is the last thing anyone wants we all need to be vigilant.