We honor the traditional Aboriginal custodians of the Byron Bay district -
the Bundjalung of Byron Bay – Arakwal Bumberlin people.
“We want to see Country how it used to be. We want to continue to look after country and want it to look after us. We want our people to be back on Country, caring for and using Country like we always have. We want to share parts of our culture with the wider community so they learn about and respect Country like we do. We want everybody to work together to keep Country clean and healthy.”
Aunties Lorna Kelly, Dulcie Nicholls and Linda Vidler, 2003.
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Blue Space Art and Byron Bay Beach Photography are Eco-warriors for our fragile threatened shorebirds. Small things you can do:
pick up plastic and rubbish on the beach
particularly fishing line
stay clear of shorebirds
and much more.... below.
BIRDS The Byron Shire is home to a diversity of birdlife, including threatened migratory shorebirds such as these Sooty Oystercatchers and Pied Oystercatchers (pictured below). Both breed along the coast but are an extremely vulnerable species. In NSW Pied Oystercatchers are thinly scattered along the entire coast, with an estimated fewer than 200 breeding pairs left and only 6 in the Byron region.
The Belongil Estuary is an important breeding ground for many shorebirds, the Little Terns and these beautiful Crested Terns (pictured below) can be seen resting there all year round. Sadly, I've witnessed people's lack of respect for these Terns - from ploughing through them on pushbikes, a soccer game, to dogs running loose in this restricted zone.
How to avoid disturbances:
Disturbance is any action that interrupts the breeding, feeding or resting of shorebirds. Causing a shorebird to take flight represents a significant disturbance as it makes the bird waste vital energy.
You can prevent shorebird disturbance if you follow these guidelines:
Keep domestic animals under control and well away from shorebirds. Every time shorebirds are forced to take flight, they burn vital energy.
Avoid driving or operating all forms of vehicles, vessels and recreational devices near shorebirds. Imagine a shorebird confronting a kite surfer for the first time; it probably thinks it is the biggest predator it has ever seen!
Don't drive along the beach at high tide or above the high-water mark — you'll destroy shorebird nests.
If fishing from a sandbar, choose the opposite end to where the birds are gathered. NEVER leave fishing line as birds get easily tangled.
Feral animals can kill shorebirds — report feral animal sightings to Council.
Consider how your actions may disturb shorebirds. This can include where you set up camp or a simple stroll through a roost site at high tide.
Prevent pollution — remember that almost all rubbish and pollutants discarded on the land end up in the bay.
By disturbing shorebirds we reduce their survival prospects.
The Shorebird 2020 Program is raising awareness of how incredible shorebirds are, and actively engaging the community to participate in gathering information needed to conserve shorebirds. Go to the website HERE to become a volunteer.