The Wildcare group Friends of OBP runs surveys and working bees, assists with research activities and raises funds, promotes and advocates to benefit the critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrots (OBPs).

Branch Files

Where we work

The Wildcare Friends of the Orange-bellied Parrot (OBP) group works across the OBP’s range with a focus on Tasmania.

What we do

The objectives of the group are to:

  • Assist with the monitoring program at Melaleuca (SW Tasmania)
  • Conduct migration and winter surveys in various locations from Strahan to Woolnorth – read about our search for OBPs on King Island in the autumn of 2024 made possible by a grant from the Tasmanian Nature Conservation Fund.
  • Assist with OBP habitat management projects
  • Raise awareness of the plight of the OBP
  • Raise funds (including through our online shop) to support the activities of volunteers and other recovery actions

Friends of the OBP has a representative on the National OBP Recovery Team.

Members of our group conduct a number of annual migration surveys on the west and north-west coasts.  Registrations are now open for the OBP survey on 28-29 September at Arthur River.  If you have any trouble using the calendar to register, please email Marianne at

An increasingly important role of Friends of the OBP is recovery program advocacy and fund raising.

We are currently involved in some exciting new projects. Through a range of partnerships, we hope to raise much needed funds to support our volunteers and other parts of the recovery program.

Volunteers with Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (NRE Tas) observe Orange-bellied Parrots visiting the feed tables, recording individual leg bands and nest observations. This data is collected for the department’s OBP Program staff to monitor survival and breeding success of wild and captive-bred release birds. While Friends of the OBP may assist the NRE OBP Program in various ways, we have no direct involvement with their volunteer program.

Scroll to the bottom of the page to see the latest news stories about OBPs in print and from radio.

Scroll down for research papers and news articles about OBPs

Visit the GALLERY to view images of the Friends of the OBP in action.

Visit FILES to see newsletters from the OBP Recovery Team.

Visit BRANCH FUNDRAISING to donate to Friends of the OBP.

Online shop

All proceeds from sales in our online shop go to support the efforts to save the critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrots. Please support the work of the Friends of the OBP by purchasing something for yourself or as a gift. Items are printed in Australia as they are ordered and then delivered by Australia Post.

You can either browse the shop products or check out the groups of products:

Accommodation at Melaleuca

​If you are a member of the Friends of the OBP and are selected by NRE as a volunteer for the OBP Summer Monitoring Program, member accommodation at Melaleuca may be available to you.

For more information on Friends of the OBP accommodation at Melaleuca please contact Barbara Willson by email to

For all other enquiries about any aspect of volunteer work through NRE’s OBP Program, including monitoring OBPs at Melaleuca or assisting at the OBP captive breeding facility near Hobart, please email

Our Contacts

President – Marianne Gee

Treasurer – Will Oliver

Wildcare Shop

OBPs in the news and research papers

Note that news stories are limited to the last five years while all research papers will be kept here.  If you are aware of something that is missing, please let us know by emailing

Robbins Island wind project heads back to court, as EPA digs in over “sensitive dunes” from Renew Economy, 5 April 2024

Endangered Orange-Bellied Parrot Chicks Get Health Check (video footage from Healesville Sanctuary) from

Disease threat emerges for critically endangered parrot from The Canberra Times, 12 January 2024

Robbins Island wind farm appeal heads to court as activists and community members launch one last attempt from ABC News, 10 January 2024

B Halliday, A Taggers and A Herrod, A record of the parasitic mite Hemimyialges macdonaldi in the Orange-bellied Parrot in Australia, Australian Veterinary Journal, 21 December 2023

Endangered orange-bellied parrots return to Melaleuca in Tasmania’s south-west in unexpectedly high numbers from ABC News, 20 December 2023

Robbins Island wind farm green-lit after threat to orange-bellied parrot species dismissed on appeal from ABC News, 27 November 2023

Robbins Island wind farm developer seeks to remove shutdown clause designed to protect orange-bellied parrot from the ABC, 12 September 2023

Bird with a wire: How to track one of Australia’s rarest species from The Sydney Morning Herald, 24 June 2023

Hobby aviculturists believe they can help conserve endangered birds from the ABC, 4 June 2023

Duck hunting season cut short at Victorian reserve to make way for critically endangered parrots from The Guardian, 18 May 2023

From the Archives, 1993: Sightings raise hope for rare parrot from The Sydney Morning Herald, 17 May 2023

Breeding birds in captivity may alter their wing shapes and reduce post-release survival chances from The Guardian, 18 March 2023

D. Stojanovic et al. (2023) Fire-mediated tree cavity reduction needs to be considered in reintroduction strategies for a critically endangered bird Research paper, published online

L. T. Bussolini et al. (2023) Carry-over effects of nestling physical condition predict first-year survival of a critically endangered migratory parrot Research paper, published online

L. T. Bussolini et al. (2023) Identifying factors affecting captive breeding success in a critically endangered species Research paper, published online

Stojanovic, D. (2023) Altered wing phenotypes of captive-bred migratory birds lower post-release fitness Research paper, published online

Stojanovic et al. (2023) Conservation management in the context of unidentified and unmitigated threatening processes Research paper, published online

Reid et al. (2023) An ecological risk assessment for the impacts of offshore wind farms on birds in Australia Research paper, published online

Record numbers of critically endangered orange-bellied parrots in Tasmania for breeding season from The Guardian, 20 December 2022

Robbins Island wind farm proposal approved on condition of 5-month annual shutdown due to orange-bellied parrots from the ABC, 8 December 2022

Tasmanian windfarm approved despite concerns for threatened wildlife from The Guardian, 8 December 2022

Animals bred in captivity develop physical changes that may hinder survival in the wild, research finds from The Guardian, 20 November 2022

Unprecedented access: Inside Tasmania’s orange-bellied parrot captive breeding program Australian Geographic visited Five Mile Beach and Melaleuca during the 2021-22 breeding season.  Includes video footage of OBP nestlings. Published 28 September 2022

Proposed Robbins Island wind farm could impact endangered parrot population, documents reveal from the ABC, 6 June 2022

‘Worst it’s ever been’: a threatened species alarm sounds during the election campaign and is ignored from The Guardian, 24 April 2022

The parrot clawing its way back from the brink, one nest at a time from The Sydney Morning Herald, 10 April 2022

Saving the orange-bellied parrot is just one perk of spending time in Tasmania’s beautiful south-west is an ABC News story from January 2022 that gives a good overview of the work of volunteers from both NRE and Friends of the OBP.

Endangered orange-bellied parrot returns to Tassie from the ABC, 28 December 2021

Orange-bellied parrot numbers are increasing in the wild, giving hope for the species’ survival from the ABC, 27 December 2021

Torquay locals pressure council to step up, hold developers accountable for environmental harm from the ABC, 6 December 2021

Six Australian birds you may never have heard of and may not be heard from again from The Guardian, 1 December 2021

Afternoons Interview – OBP  An interview on ABC Radio Hobart with Friends of the OBP President, Marianne Gee, September 2021

Orange-bellied parrots leave Tasmania in biggest ever numbers for annual migration from The Guardian, 22 April 2021

Orange-bellied parrot: best year in a decade for critically endangered bird from The Guardian, 10 November 2020

Most orange-bellied parrots don’t survive their first migration – and Tasmanian researchers want to know why from the ABC, 17 August 2020

Orange-bellied parrots, all but extinct, survive Tasmanian summer only to die migrating from The Guardian, 16 August 2020

It is possible to pay attention to science and then help actual animals on purpose from The Guardian, 7 August 2020

Numbers of critically endangered orange-bellied parrot soar from low 20s to more than 100 from The Guardian, 27 April 2020

Wire on a bird: Tiny backpack radios to keep track of rarest parrot from The Sydney Morning Herald, 27 April 2020

Biologists play cupid as orange-bellied parrots return to Tasmania from the ABC, 14 November 2019

Australia has all the tools to protect its birds from extinction – but it is failing from The Guardian, 5 November 2019