Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche


We cannot learn from the past …

*Pic: The eagle is stuffed, placed against a photo montage background, at the entrance to the Inveresk site …

I recently spent an enjoyable afternoon in the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery at Inveresk. Run, and in the main, financed by the Launceston City Council it is the key to the relevance and sense of place of a city of 125,000 that punches well above its weight.

In the entrance is an eye-catching photo of a female wedge-tailed eagle, Australia’s largest bird of prey. (Montage Above)

The caption to the display notes that:

“Tasmanian birds are paler and larger than those on mainland Australia and are considered a subspecies.

Tasmanian Wedge Tailed Eagles are listed as endangered due to loss and disturbance of breeding habitat; shooting, trapping and poisoning, collisions with vehicles, wind turbines and wires and electrocution from power lines. The estimated population is about 1700 and only about 200 pairs breed successfully each year. Their huge nests are made in old growth native forests and can be used for over 100 years by successive eagles…..”

As noted on another important TT thread the Swift Parrot 10 years ago was down to less than 2000 birds with both species seemingly in terminal decline.

What is it about Tasmania and Tasmanians that they take such an obvious pride in the failure of authority to protect the unique and critically endangered?

Is it because Tasmanians do not care?

Is it because Tasmanians treat their surroundings with a similar disregard to the creatures that inhabit them?

Is it because of the power of a bankrupt Tasmanian forest industry?

Or is it because the industry has the power to buy the allegiance of our pollies so that without conscience they will accept the destruction of habitat in our remaining ancient Bluegums and Old Growth Forests with the stroke of the forestry pen?

The Thylacine has gone, the Devil is having a pretty tough time – we seemingly cannot learn from the past?

In Tasmania Forestry still reigns supreme even if it costs every Tasmanian extended waiting lists at the hospital, a larger electricity bill or even part-time teachers and doctors.

No-one seems to care!

We even gave Forestry Tasmania 7 million dollars to buy FSC accreditation?

They should never be allowed such accreditation when through their actions they are wiping out two bird species unique to this very special island.

The only way to teach Dinosaurs such as Harriss and Abetz – Pollies that ensured that the Liberal Party applied to roll back World Heritage Listing over Tasmanian forests – is to hit them where it hurts in the pocket when they have behaved so badly.

They should pay with their jobs, they should never be re-elected; we can do better, we will do better we must do better.

Do we want to prevent the extinction of two Tasmanian endemic species or do we wish to make the Malaysian owners of Ta Ann who control our pollies even richer.

That is the simple choice.

Forestry Tasmania does not deserve FSC, should never be given FSC and our pollies must not be allowed to corrupt due process when two endemic species are at risk of extinction.

EARLIER on Tasmanian Times …

Plans to log Swift Parrot critical nesting refuge

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  1. Andrew Ricketts

    November 22, 2015 at 12:17 am

    The full extent of Swift Parrot habitat has not even been identified either by the DPIPWE Threatened Species Unit or the Forest Practices Authority or in relation to the land managed by Forestry Tasmania, by that organisation.

    Indeed it has not even been identified in any accurate sense by either NRM organisations or by Local Governments who have Priority Habitat overlay mapping and schedules in local planning schemes. Statewide Planning will inevitably worsen this matter.

    That habitat, which (importantly) occurs on both public and private land, is not being either conserved or protected.

    In relation to private land there is no useful means of protecting the Parrot’s habitat. Shamefully there is no Government run private land conservation program.

    Some tree species known to support Swift Parrot form hollows slowly and the birds need hollows. Some of these tree species, such as E ovata, although about 95% depleted, are still being logged by this island state of thylacine killers.

    There is even a proposal to log some 600 ha or so E ovata over near Ansons Bay.

    The solutions to the problem are much easier than Governments unearthing of some modicum of spinal fortitude.

  2. Ted Mead

    November 18, 2015 at 11:49 am

    Yes John – Tasmanians have an inherent history of blatantly disregarding nature. That’s why the pillage and plunder Forestry ethic is so entrenched in the Island’s somewhat colonised ‘reap what you can’ culture.

    No mention of Wedge-tail losses through poisoning and shooting by a small minority of rurals and rednecks. Impossible to get statistics on that but I’m sure it’s an alarming figure.

    Also Sea Eagle populations in Tasmania (which there is about 200 breeding pairs) would be notably vulnerable if wind turbines were erected everywhere along the coast.

    I am all for photovoltaics rather than wind turbines. Invasive Rotor blade turbines technology will be superceded with small oscillating wind towers in the future I suspect.

    History shows us that we learn very little from our past, and therefore shouldn’t rely on our dubious ‘toe the line’ politicians to change anything unless their constituent voting base is overwhelming prevailing towards change.

  3. mike seabrook

    November 16, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    ref #3

    oh for reynard the magnificent $50million tassie fox ( and even dropping verified scats on brunie island before swimming back to the tassie mainland)

    may he live forever and the mainland pollies continue to be duped so as to continue pouring cash down to tassie to continue employing tasmanians and to be spent on tassie goods and services

    surely one of the 100 or so people employed during this time will become a whistle blower and out all the scamsters

  4. mike seabrook

    November 16, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    ref 3 and 4

    appreciate the scottish up to date info

    smales and muir excellent paper for the dept of environment and heritage dated sep 2005

    time for an update

    however google – woolnorth eagle deaths
    – smh nov 17 2010
    – identified count of 22 as at 2010
    -unidentified count – not known in the woolnorth area as at 2010
    – info past 2010 is scarce

    – note concern – massive wind turbine farm proposed for granville harbour – some 50 km south of woolnorth and right on the windy tassie west coast.

  5. John Hawkins

    November 16, 2015 at 10:36 am

    The subject of wind farms and Tasmanian Eagles was researched in detail by Smales and Muir in 2005.

    Modelled cumulative impacts of wind farms on the Tasmanian Wedge -tailed Eagle as quoted in this research paper suggests that the Tasmanian Wedge -tailed Eagle numbers only 742 and that the potential for deaths is one per annum.

    “We consider that a collision avoidance rate for the species is likely to be 99% or higher. Thus the additional mortality predicted for the cumulative effects of turbine collisions for wind farms within the range of Tasmanian Wedge -tailed Eagles is likely to result in the additional death of approximately one bird per annum.”

    The most important fact is the suggested number of surviving birds in 2005 742.

    Critically endangered springs to mind.

    Another Forestry Tasmania triumph?

  6. John Hawkins

    November 15, 2015 at 4:35 pm


    I have recently returned from Scotland having spent a few days with my daughter on the hill stalking at Wyvis.

    The adjoining Novar Estate has over 60 wind turbines in part destroying what was an idyllic Scottish landscape.

    I asked the Wyvis Head Keeper about bird kill and in particular birds of prey, the Royal Society for the Protection of British Birds being a serious and officious player in the protection of British birds of prey in Scotland.

    He had no knowledge of any bird of prey being killed by a wind turbine on the adjoining estate.

    I have also shot grouse over dogs.

    Keepers on grouse moors would bless a turbine if it managed to protect their grouse from avian predators.

    Keepers tell me wind turbines have no such effect.

    Here in Tasmania you need special remote areas of Old Growth Forest for eagles to nest. These areas are not compatible with the treeless windswept coastal landscapes required for wind turbines.

    I suggest that an eagle death by turbine in Tasmania is a rare if unknown occurrence nevertheless this falsehood is promoted by those of an anti green persuasion.

    Mike let us have some accurate figures or is this another Tasmanian fox scam.

    Why pick on Forestry because that is where the birds nest. As far as I know no eagle has yet nested in a wind turbine.

    Correct me if I am wrong.

  7. Steve

    November 15, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    #1 “why pick on forestry when there is a demonstrated bigger villain”

    Have wind generators been “demonstrated” to be a bigger villain?

  8. mike seabrook

    November 15, 2015 at 12:06 pm

    my guess is the biggest killers of the beloved wedgies in tasssie are the lovely wind power turbines

    and i expect that the deaths now are not disclosed to the public, after the bad publicity these got previously when wedgie deaths were announced.

    is anyone keeping an up to date score sheet of wedgie killings.

    why pick on forestry when there is a demonstrated bigger villain

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