Mural of Hope for Western Ground Parrot
Expressing his love for wildlife with a paintbrush, artist Brenton See has created a mural for one of our country’s rarest birds, here at Perth Zoo.
There are less than 150 Western Ground Parrots remaining in the wild and Perth Zoo are working closely with Parks and Wildlife WA and Friends of the Western Ground Parrot, to save this species from extinction.
Brenton volunteered his time and talent to paint a mural of the parrots, based on photos by Alan Danks and filmmaker Jennene Riggs, in the Zoo grounds as part of his endemic bird project.
“I’m just doing what I can with my art to raise awareness, I donated my time for free here,” Brenton said.
“It’s something that is really important to me.”
As part of his project, Brenton is painting murals of 17 endemic bird species, at the locations where they can be found.
With Western Ground Parrots being so rare, Brenton decided to paint at the Zoo, where we have been working behind the scenes to save this species through a captive breeding program.
Arthur Ferguson, Australian Fauna Supervisor, leads the program here with a team of keepers.
“We’ve certainly come a long way since the program started and we do believe we are getting very close to being able to breed the birds successfully now,” Arthur said.
Recently the team observed positive mating behaviour from male parrot Joy and female parrot, Fifi.
With little known or recorded about this elusive species, Arthur’s team have been using a CCTV monitoring to observe the aviaries, allowing them to gain a better understanding of the parrots without causing disturbance.
As well as the high definition cameras the setup includes microphone recording devices as well, so the team can listen to the birds calling. A noise that few people on the planet have ever heard.
“By working out what the birds require, we have a better chance of encouraging breeding,” Arthur said.
Brenton said he felt honoured to be able to paint his mural where there is work happening behind the scenes to save the Western Ground Parrot.
“It’s in Perth Zoos hands to help bring them back,” Brenton said.
Next time you visit the Zoo, you can see Brenton’s mural of the Western Ground Parrots near ZOO HQ.
To find out more about Brenton’s Endemic Bird Project, visit his website: brentonsee.com.au