RATIONALE FOR A NATIONAL REGISTRATION SCHEME FOR EXOTIC
SPECIES OF BIRDS
Another clearly stated objective of the Act is regulation of the import of animals and plants "the establishment of which in Australia or an external Territory could have an adverse effect (otherwise than by reason of a disease) on, or on the habitats of, native Australian animals or native Australian plants."
It has been argued in avicultural circles that there are no clear examples of captive bred exotic birds forming feral self sustaining populations. This is not the case. A program screened on the Global Family series on the SBS network in 1992 ("Parakeets in Tokyo - an Exotic Nuisance"), graphically portrayed the case of about eighty species of bird that had formed feral populations in and around Tokyo. Eight or nine species of parakeet have formed over wintering feral populations which are self sustaining and which are having a marked effect on the orchards surrounding Tokyo. This program also showed various species of parrot foraging in areas covered with snow. If environmental factors more closely resemble the natural range of these species, as is the case with the Australian environment, then it follows that the species will more readily adapt to the new situation.
The above factors constitute the rationale for the proposed national registration scheme. The proposal has been put forward by the ANCA as the only feasible course of action. Similar registration schemes have been implemented in other countries where governments have been obliged to act against the illicit trade. Where these schemes have faltered the government has decided on the only course of action remaining - a total ban on the keeping of exotic birds.
The ANCA recognises that the majority of aviculturists are responsible persons. The need for regulation is the result of the acts of the irresponsible few. The argument is constantly raised that the keeping of wildlife is a right rather than a privilege. The right, or privilege, is however having a marked impact on the status of wildlife across the globe.
Some aviculturists believe that the proposed national registration scheme will legalise the keeping of exotic birds that have recently been imported in contravention of existing Australian legislation. The belief that the declaration of an amnesty will somehow render illegally imported birds legal is mistaken. The ANCA does not share this belief and will take any action necessary within the legislative framework to ensure that compliance is achieved. Registration schedules will be drawn up in consultation with responsible aviculturists, consultants and relevant government officials and will be dependent on the provision of factual evidence.
It is the time for aviculturists to direct their skills and energies to the protection and conservation of endangered species in the areas where they are under threat. One of the treats is undeniably the illegal trade in wildlife. Australia must deny a safe haven for the illicit trader. The ANCA. will be relying on the support of responsible aviculturists throughout Australia to protect the world's dwindling wildlife and to ensure that Australia's wildlife is not further jeopardised by the irresponsibility and greed of a few.
(Ed Note: Environment Australia - The Biodiversity Group (formerly the Australian Nature Conservation Agency, formerly the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service) was originally formed in 1975 as the principal nature conservation program of the Commonwealth Government of Australia, and is a program of the Commonwealth Environment Portfolio.
The National Exotic Bird Registration Scheme (NEBRS) came into effect on the 2 October 1996. Additional information on the National Exotic Bird Registration Scheme and how it applies within Australia can be found by visiting our Wildlife Regulations section.
(The birds that are not classified as exotic birds, and are therefore exempt from the scheme, are listed on Schedule 9 of the Wildlife Protection (Regulation of Exports and Imports) Act 1982. A summary of the current listing under Schedule 9 relating to Parrots appears below. Be aware that the Schedules to the Act are amended periodically and you should ensure that you are referring to the current Schedule. The exempt exotic parrot species below are current as at 2 October 1996.) Also if you would like to view the complete list, see the Environment Australia, Wildlife Protection website.
Parrots:Scientific name / Common names
Eclectus roratus polychloros / Red-sided Eclectus parrot
Eclectus roratus solomonensis / Solomon Island Eclectus parrot
Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae novaezelandiae / Red-crowned kakariki
Cyanoramphus auriceps auriceps / Yellow-crowned kakariki
Agapornis roseicollis / Peach-faced lovebird
Agapornis fischeri / Fischer's lovebird
Agapornis personata / Masked lovebird
Agapornis lilianae / Nyasa lovebird
Psittacula eupatria / Alexandrine parrot
Psittacula krameri / Rose-ringed, Indian ring-necked parrot
Psittacula himalayana / Slaty-headed parrot
Psittacula cyanocephala / Plum-headed parrot
Aratinga jandaya / Janday conure
Aratinga solstitialis / Sun conure
Nandayus nenday / Nanday conure
Myopsitta monachus / Monk parrot
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