A popular forage site for the threatened Forest Red-tailed Cockatoo in Bibra Lake now has an off-grid bird waterer.
The innovative City of Cockburn project adds to its growing collection of bird waterers throughout the municipality, with more sites under assessment for future instalment.
It is the first to be fitted with a solar-powered submersible water pump connected to a 1000-litre bulk water container, negating the need for access to scheme water in the sensitive bushland environment.
The four-metre-high bird waterer features four large water troughs at varying heights and angles, with timber rungs perfect for perching and beak-sharpening. It was designed and supplied by the Town of Victoria Park’s Natural Areas Team and manufactured in Perth.
The City’s Rehabilitating Roe 8 Project Manager Adam Peck said footage of birdlife using the sturdy hot-dip galvanized, powder-coated structure within its first week had proven its early popularity among smaller bushland birds including Magpies and bathing Red Wattlebirds.
“There is no guarantee cockies or other birds will use it in the first year, as it may take time for them to get used to it and feel safe using it, but we know they like to forage in the area,” Mr Peck said.
“We are in a drying climate and threatened species like Black-Cockatoo are in decline and will benefit from additional water sources.
“Birds like Black-Cockatoo rarely drink from lakes, due to vulnerability to predation and difficulties taking flight from boggy ground so this waterer could prove very beneficial in time.”
Water tank levels will be monitored and refilled periodically with the help of a phone app which will sense and determine how the waterer’s fill and flush system is working, including an alert for City staff if it ever becomes completely empty.
The City completed the $9,000 project in late March with State Government funding from the Rehabilitate Roe 8 project.
A plaque will soon dedicate the waterer to local resident Rex Sallur who continues to add to his 35 years volunteering by donating his time and expertise to a variety of local environmental projects, causes and organisations.