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Location Australia, Victoria
Central coordinates 141o 40.21' East  34o 47.39' South
IBA criteria A1, A3
Area 700,420 ha
Altitude 0 - 100m
Year of IBA assessment 2008

BirdLife Australia



Summary This large mallee reserve supports populations of three globally threatened species, Malleefowl, Black-eared Miner and Mallee Emu-wren, the near threatened Red-lored Whistler, and two species restricted to the mallee biome, Regent Parrot and Purple-gaped Honeyeater. It also contains ephemeral wetlands, which sometimes support significant numbers of waterbirds.

Site description The Murray-Sunset, Hattah & Annuello IBA captures a large area of contiguous mallee in north-western Victoria. It encompasses seven protected areas and the contiguous uncleared native vegetation. This entire area is incorporated into a single IBA because it supports a suite of threatened mallee bird species, some of which occur in very small numbers scattered across vast distances. A large area of patchy and degraded habitat in the north-west of Murray-Sunset NP and extending north from the park is excluded because it supports none of the key bird species. The IBA captures the protected Hattah Lakes and wetland systems along the Murray River, but waterbird numbers at these sites are insufficient to justify nomination as an independent IBA. The IBA could be expanded to include a length of the Murray River which supports large numbers of breeding Regent Parrots.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Malleefowl Leipoa ocellata resident  1998-2003  30-100 breeding pairs  medium  A1  Vulnerable 
Regent Parrot Polytelis anthopeplus resident  1998-2008  uncommon  A3  Least Concern 
Mallee Emuwren Stipiturus mallee resident  1998-2003  50-200 breeding pairs  medium  A1, A3  Endangered 
Black-eared Miner Manorina melanotis resident  1998-2003  20-40 breeding pairs  medium  A1, A3  Endangered 
Purple-gaped Honeyeater Lichenostomus cratitius resident  1998-2003  50-200 individuals  medium  A3  Least Concern 
Red-lored Whistler Pachycephala rufogularis resident  1998-2003  30-100 breeding pairs  medium  A1, A3  Vulnerable 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Annuello Nature Conservation Reserve - Flora and Fauna Reserve 35,284 protected area contained by site 36,014  
Bell Nature Conservation Reserve 1,051 protected area contained by site 1,051  
Bockie Natural Features Reserve - Bushland Reserve 23 protected area contained by site 23  
Gnarr I237 Natural Features Reserve - Bushland Reserve 49 protected area overlaps with site 21  
Hattah - Kulkyne National Park 48,000 protected area contained by site 48,000  
Murray - Kulkyne Other Park 3,530 protected area contained by site 3,530  
Murray - Sunset National Park 633,000 protected area overlaps with site 536,774  
Nowingi Natural Features Reserve - Bushland Reserve 138 protected area contained by site 138  
Nurnurnemal Natural Features Reserve - Bushland Reserve 51 protected area contained by site 72  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Desert Semi-desert (includes gibber plains)  minor
Forest Callitris forests & woodlands; Casuarina forests & woodlands; Eucalypt low open forests  major
Grassland Hummock grasslands  major
Savanna Eucalypt open woodlands  major
Shrubland Chenopod shrubs, samphire shrubs and forblands; Heath; Mallee shrublands & woodlands  major
Wetlands (inland) Ephemeral; Freshwater lakes & pools  minor

Land ownership Victorian State Government.

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research minor
tourism/recreation minor
water management minor

Protection status Numerous - see separate section.

Acknowledgements Thanks to Tim Dolby for drafting the nomination.

References Baker-Gabb, D. (2004) Recovery Plan for the Mallee Emu-wren, Red-lored Whistler, Western Whipbird and other threatened mallee birds. Natural Heritage Trust, Canberra.

Burbidge, A.H. (1985) The Regent Parrot. A report on the breeding distribution and habitat requirements along the Murray River in south-eastern Australia. Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, Report Series No. 4.

Clarke, R.H. and Clarke, M.F. (1998) Field management of the Black-eared Miner. Final report to Dept of Natural Resources and Environment, Vic. July 1998.

Clarke, R.H., Boulton, R.L. and Clarke, M.F. (in press) Estimating population size of the black-eared miner, with an assessment of landscape-scale habitat requirements. Pacific Conservation Biology.

Clarke, R.H. (2005) Ecological requirements of birds specialising in mallee habitats. Modelling the habitat suitability for threatened mallee birds La Trobe University, Bundoora, Australia.

Clark, R.H (2007) Surveys for Mallee Emu-wrens within the Murray Mallee Reserve System, Victoria, Spring 2006. Internim Report to the Department of Sustainability and Environment, Melbourne.

DEWHA (2008) A Directory of Important Wetlands in Australia. http://www.environment.gov.au/water/publications/environmental/wetlands/database/ accessed August 2008.

DSE (2003) Hattah-Kulkyne Lakes Ramsar Site: Strategic Management Plan. Melbourne: Department of Sustainability and Environment.

Garnett S.T. and Crowley, G.M. (2000) The action plan for Australian birds 2000. Canberra: Environment Australia.

Luck, G.W., Possingham, H.P. and Paton, D.C. (1999a) Bird responses at inherent and induced edges in the Murray Mallee, South Australia. 1. Differences in Abundance and Diversity. Emu 99: 157-69.

Luck, G.W., Possingham, H.P. and Paton, D.C. (1999b) Bird responses at inherent and induced edges in the Murray Mallee, South Australia. 2. Nest predation as an edge effect. Emu 99:170-75.

Silveira, C.E. (1990) Mallee Emu-wren. Pp. 107-109 In Threatened birds of Australia - an annotated list. Brouwer, J. & Garnett, S. (Eds). Royal Australasian Ornithologists Union Report number 68. Moonee Ponds: RAOU.

Silveira, C.E. (1993) The recovery plan for Australia’s threatened mallee birds – addressing fire as a threatening process: research phase. Report to the Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service. Royal Australasian Ornithologists Union, Melbourne.

Silveira, C.E. (1999) Mallee Emu-wren Stipiturus mallee. Flora and Fauna Guarantee Action Statement. Natural Resources and Environment, Melbourne.

Webster, R. and Leslie, D. (1997) Assessment of Regent Parrot Polytelis anthopeplus breeding habitat in south-western New South Wales. Unpublished report to NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service and State Forests of New South Wales.

Webster, R. (2002) Surveys of Regent Parrot Polytelis anthopeplus monarchoides breeding colonies in Victoria between Piambie State Forest and Nangiloc. Unpublished Report to Mallee Catchment Management Authority.

Webster, R. (2003) Further surveys of Regent Parrot Polytelis anthopeplus monarchoides breeding colonies in Victoria between Piambie State Forest and Nangiloc. Unpublished Report to Mallee Catchment Management Authority.

Webster, R. (2004) Surveys of potential Regent Parrot Polytelis anthopeplus monarchoides nesting habitat in Victoria between Piambie State Forest and Lambert Island. Unpublished Report to Mallee Catchment Management Authority.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Murray-Sunset, Hattah and Annuello. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/07/2014

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