Twitches

The Queensland Twitchathon
The Paradise Parrot Trophy
Morning twitching group, mobile and ready
Morning twitching group, mobile and eager to sight their first birds

Why we need twitchers

Keen and experienced birders are sometimes called ‘twitchers’. A small proportion of twitchers can go to extraordinary lengths to see as many different bird species as possible, and in as many different situations, regions and countries. There are a great many variations on what an individual twitcher wants to see but it usually involves personal pleasure or challenge, and not necessarily, though sometimes, a sense of competition.

Often it can be a sociable "fun thing", such as happens with our Queensland Twitchathons. However, the Queensland Twitchathon is primarily aimed at raising funds (through sponsorships) to be used to fund avian research. In addition, most of our team contestants just love to see birds in their natural habitat AND enjoy each other's company with a common goal.

Twitching has other important side benefits in that keen twitchers usually become experienced bird observers, skilled at identifying many bird species under all sorts of weather conditions. We try and include new birders and young birders so that there is maximum benefit from the Twitchathon. Twitchathon participants are most suitable people to assist with the conduct of bird population surveys. Their reliable observations yield the vital data required to indicate whether bird biodiversity is at risk and whether degradation of bird habitats is putting a given species under threat.

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The Queensland Twitchathon

The 2018 Queensland Twitchathon

Calling all first-timers.

This year we would like to encourage new members and those new to twitchathons to join in. Excuses like "I'm not experienced enough" or "I don't know the birds well enough" to join a team are not acceptable.

This year we encourage "experienced" birders to form teams comprised mainly of new birders or first time Twitchathon participants. What better way to boost your birding skills than join an experienced birder for 12 or 24 hours of "competitive birding".

Also this year there will be a whole lot of new fun sub-categories for things like; least experienced, least/greatest distance travelled, mode of travel etc. so check out the Rules.

or at one of the meetings, register your interest to either join a team or form a team and participate in this unique part of birding and raise sponsorship for the research and conservation projects supported by Birds Queensland.

Then start planning your route for the Queensland Twitchathon between Friday 21 September and Tuesday 2 October. The categories will be the same as last year and 'twitchers' can participate in the Open twitch, an Eco twitch or a Champagne twitch. With the two weekends (including a long weekend) you could even consider doing two twitches on separate days or in separate categories. Prizes and certificates will be awarded to the winners of each category and certificates for the sub-categories. Information on the three categories and the sub-categories can be found in the Rules and Conditions.

As the purpose of the Queensland Twitchathon is primarily to raise sponsorships for the research and conservation projects supported by Birds Queensland, the organising committee will also award prizes to the individual and to the team who raise the highest amount in sponsorships.

You will need to download the Rules and Conditions, Team Sponsor Record Form and the Entry Form. Species lists are also available on this website: https://birdsqueensland.org.au/bird_lists.php.

Registrations open 28 July and close 19 September 2018.

Note: One member of each team must be a member of Birds Queensland.

For those without internet access or the ability to print documents, please contact the Queensland Twitchathon organising co-ordinator or call Paul Marty on 0418 899 967. Information can then be emailed or posted.

The 2017 Queensland Twitchathon

For 2017 the Twitchathon just over $3000 in sponsorship was raised for the important project - Assessing the extent of nest predation on the endangered Golden-shouldered Parrot Psephotus chrysopterygius in central Cape York.

Further details of the project are available.

Congratulations to the following winners of the 2017 Queensland Twitchathon:

Category Place Team Name Team Members No of Species Seen
Open
(24 hours)
Winners: Paradise Parrot Trophy Central Highlander Edna Barker 99
Champagne
(12 hours)
Winners Just a Hobby Deborah Metters
Liz Gould
Todd Burrows
149
Eco
(12 hours)
Winners Kakatua On Yer Bike David Milton
Sandra Harding
114

 

Special thanks must go to the individual and to the team who raised the highest amounts in sponsorship:

Highest Individual Fundraiser Winner: Dollarbird Trophy Margaret Cameron  
Highest Team Fundraiser Spotter Doves Rae Clark, Judith Giles, Paul Marty

 

The Paradise Parrot Trophy

Since 1991, the winners of The Queensland Twitchathon have been presented with the Paradise Parrot Trophy which has plaques engraved with the names of the winning teams and the team members plus the number of species seen.

As the trophy is not always on display, the attached file will give you details of the winning teams since 1991.

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