Birding for the Glossy Blacks


Glossy Black Cockatoo image courtesy of Conor Jenkins

If you enjoy spending time in the great outdoors, learning about and keeping watch on one of Australia’s most charismatic cockatoos, read on.

The annual Glossy Black-Cockatoo Birding Day will take place on Sunday, May 19 and citizen scientists are invited to enjoy a great day of searching for and recording sightings of such an iconic bird.

Two workshops in the lead-up to this annual event will aim to unravel some of the mystery that surrounds the locations, habitat use and eating habits of the threatened species.

Environment Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said a strong turnout of local volunteers would be vital to the success of this event.

“The Glossy Black-Cockatoo Birding Day relies on the assistance of Sunshine Coast residents to provide data of the bird’s numbers and whereabouts,” Cr McKay said.

“This species is listed as vulnerable in Queensland, so the information our residents record will assist in conservation efforts for the glossies.

“The Glossy Black-Cockatoo feeds almost exclusively on the seeds of casuarina (she-oak) trees.

“As with many other parrots, these cockatoos require large eucalypt trees with nesting hollows for breeding. This occurs in eastern Australia from around March to December with just one egg laid.

“In spite of their name, Glossy Blacks are not at all glossy, but actually a bit scruffy. They are also smaller than their Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoo cousins also found on the Sunshine Coast.

“Curiously, they are also much tamer when approached. So get outside and have a look around the beautiful casuarina trees to see if you can spot one or two.

“Anyone can get involved in birding – young kids with their parents or grandparents, groups of students and friends.”

To participate in the Birding Day event and to help learn about Glossy Black-Cockatoos, Sunshine Coast Council is hosting two workshops (Birding Day participants only need to attend one workshop):

  • Wednesday, 8 May 2019 from 2.45 – 4.15pm at Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve, 148 Mountain View Rd, Maleny
  • Monday, 13 May 2019 from 4 – 5.30pm at council’s Fred Murray Building in Nambour, 140 Currie St.

Volunteer Glossy Black-Cockatoo enthusiasts can participate in the annual Birding Day by contacting council’s Natural Areas team at 07 5475 7272 or

To register for one of the workshops, please visit council’s website,  And for more information about Glossy Black-Cockatoos, please visit the Glossy Black Conservancy website,

Animals Wildlife or Pets Community Conservation Entertainment Environment Sunshine Coast Council

Sunshine Coast Regional Council :
Locked Bag 72 Sunshine Coast Mail Centre Q 4560, Sunshine Coast Wide
07 5475 7272
1300 007 272
Sunshine Coast Regional Council
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