Australia’s official coronation gift revealed
The Australian government has revealed its official gift in honour of the King’s coronation – a donation to help save the endangered western ground parrot (WGP).
Also known as the “Kyloring” by the Noongar people, there are thought to be less than 150 WGPs left - making it one of the world’s rarest bird species.
A national contribution of $10,000 will be made on behalf of the Australian people to Friends of the Western Ground Parrot (FWGP), a charity fighting to save the parrot.
Releasing a statement on Wednesday, the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet said the gesture joined the “emerging tradition” of marking royal occasions by contributing to conservation efforts.
“Past contributions have gone towards the conservation of the bilby, mountain pygmy possum, numbat and koala,” the statement said.
FWGP chair Paul Wettin told NCA NewsWire that despite coming “out of the blue” the organisation was “absolutely delighted” by the announcement.
“In that context we particularly want to send our congratulations to King Charles,” he said.
Having managed to see a couple of kylorings himself, Mr Wettin described the parrot as “very cryptic”.
“They’re virtually impossible to see, there’s so few of them,” he said.
“Despite having been greatly diminished their habitat area is still quite big and there’s a desire to see or hear them.
“It’s very easy to get hooked on it … when you see the work we all do it’s really quite inspiring.”
kyloring can only be found in southeastern parts of Cape Arid National Park and adjacent areas of Nuytsland Nature Reserve, a remote West Australian park.
Described as being medium-sized, slim and mostly green, the WGP spends much of its time on the ground and as a result is difficult to spot.
Bushfires in recent years, specifically those in 2015, nearly wiped out all of the kyloring’s natural environment.
The clearing of habitat for agriculture, increased dry lightning storms and bushfires caused by climate change, and predation by feral cats and foxes have led to the bird being classified as critically endangered under multiple Conservation Acts.
FWGP formed as a community group in Albany in 2003, incorporating in 2009 and subsequently becoming listed on the Register of Environmental Organisations.
Fighting to save the parrot from extinction, the charity works in conjunction with wildlife conservation organisations as well as the federal government.
King Charles’ coronation will take place at Westminster Abbey on May 6 at 11am AEST time.