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20 Dec 2018

Baby birds leave their nests as summer arrives

Early summer is a great time of year to go birdwatching in Centennial Parklands with many young birds to observe, including Darter chicks in the nest, ducklings exploring Busby’s Pond, Grebe chicks at Kippax Lake, and fledgling rainbow lorikeets and figbirds.

The Parklands has a high abundance and diversity of resident birds. If you're lucky you may also see one of our migratory birds visiting, including the Latham’s Snipe.

Baby birds around Sydney are making the transition from nestling to fledgling, trying out their wings and learning to fly. Young birds are often seen on the ground throughout late spring and early summer and this is a normal stage in their transition to adulthood.

A Comorant with a fledgling

At this time of year birds are often handed in to Parklands’ staff, having been found on the ground and thought to be abandoned or sick. In some cases the birds were happy and healthy fledglings, taken from their parents by park visitors with the best intentions.

A Tawny Frogmouth fledgling photographed by Zik Teo

The Parklands Environmental Officer, Amara Glynn, says she is heartened by people’s concern for wildlife but wants to educate visitors about bird behaviour and reduce unnecessary human intervention.

“Early summer is one of the best times to go birdwatching at the park when young birds are out and about, starting to fly and find their own food. Often you can see the parents hanging around somewhere close by keeping an eye on their young”


Amara’s advice to anyone in Sydney who sees a bird on the ground and is not sure what to do is to call Sydney Wildlife or WIRES for free advice.

If you find a young bird on the ground, please monitor it from a distance for a while to see if the parents are in the area. If they are nearby and the chick is in no immediate danger there is no need to intervene. The best place for a healthy young bird is with its parents. 

  • Centennial Parklands Rangers: 0412 718 611

  • Sydney Wildlife website:

  • Rescue/advice line: (02) 9413 4300

  • WIRES website:

  • Rescue/advice line: 1300 094 737

    Ducklings at Centennial Park
Category: Nature
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