Help preserve one of WA’s most iconic birds with information sessions for the Great Cocky Count next month

Craig DuncanHarvey-Waroona Reporter
The Great Cocky Count will be held next month.
Camera IconThe Great Cocky Count will be held next month. Credit: Supplied/TheWest

One of the largest citizen scientist projects in Australia is happening soon, with environmental groups around the State running workshops to train the next generation of cockatoo counters.

The Great Cocky Count is a yearly study run by Birdlife Australia that provides data on one of Australia’s most iconic endangered animals, black cockatoos.

The count will run on April 14 from 5.15pm to 6.45pm, with volunteers across the State recording all the birds they see around roosting sites across the South West.

Birdlife Australia’s WA Black-Cockatoo Project co-ordinator Merryn Pryor said the amount of people who put their hands up to participate in the count each year showed just how much West Australians loved their cockatoos.

Get in front of tomorrow's news for FREE

Journalism for the curious Australian across politics, business, culture and opinion.


“Over the past 14 years, we have had more than 5000 people join us for the count,” she said.

“This year we hope to add another 600 people to that list as we aim to count almost 400 roost sites across the South West.“

She said the Great Cocky Count collected critical data for the threatened species of black cockatoo endemic to Australia.

Due to habitat loss, invasive animals and climate change, black cockatoo numbers have been falling around the State and projects such as the cocky count provide irreplaceable data for conservation efforts to protect the species.

“It is a privilege that we get to share our backyards and neighbourhoods with these iconic species,” Ms Pryor said.

To help facilitate this growing crew of cockatoo counters, Birdlife is running workshops around the South West teaching of the dangers cockatoos face and how to get involved with the Great Cocky Count.

“We want to mobilise and encourage as many people as possible to make the 14th Great Cocky Count bigger and better than ever,” Ms Pryor said.

Information sessions will be held in Bunbury and the Peel region, hosted by the Leschenault Catchment Council and the Peel-Harvey Catchment Council respectively.

The Peel-Harvey Catchment Council will host an information session on March 5 at 5.30pm; for more information visit their website or to register, email megan.leroy@peel-harvey.org.au.

For those more southern, Leschenault Catchment Council will be hosting its information session on March 6 at 5.30pm. Register attendance on their website.

For more information about the 2024 GCC or to register, visit the Great Cocky Count website.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails