THE swift parrot has been uplisted to critically endangered status by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, prompting calls for the state government to discontinue logging in the parrot’s breeding habitat.
Australian National University researchers have also applied to the federal government to have the birds uplisted to critically endangered status, following the release of studies showing swift parrots were at higher risk of predation by sugar gliders in logged areas.
The researchers reported in July that the species could decline by 94.7 per cent within 16 years.
Greens environment spokeswoman Rosalie Woodruff said the updated listing was the wake-up call the government needed.
‘‘We know logging is a direct threat to the parrot. It means less breeding and feeding habitat and means sugar gliders are more likely to eat chicks and parents,’’ she said.
‘‘If the government keeps logging critical habitat on Bruny Island, the East Coast and southern forests it’s effectively signing the parrot’s death certificate.’’
Swift parrots breed only in Tasmania, and there are believed to be less than 2000 birds surviving in the wild. It was revealed in March that the state government had ignored the advice of DPIPWE experts to discontinue logging activity in five coupes of the parrot’s breeding habitat.
A government spokesman said Tasmania was assisting the Commonwealth with efforts to improve the governance of recovery teams.
‘‘The status of the swift parrot in Tasmania as endangered is unchanged,’’ he said.
‘‘The government is continuing to protect swift parrots in Tasmania through strategic landscape scale conservation and policies that mitigate impacts on breeding and foraging habitat.’’
Labor environment spokesman Craig Farrell said his party encouraged Forestry Tasmania and the state government to work with experts to ensure the parrot was protected.
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