Welcome to the latest news page for Norfolk Island National Park. Feel free to pass these stories around or contact us if you would like more information.
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19 July 2012
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Get all the latest exciting news from Parks Australia!
A happy ending for Romeo and Juliet
Norfolk Island is happy to report a sighting of the green parrots Romeo and Juliet together in the botanic gardens!
For those new to this tale, Juliet was one of the last three green parrots the park had in captivity. Wild parrot Romeo regularly visited Juliet and courted her through the wire. The park set Juliet free last year and since then the romance has blossomed.
Explore Phillip Island
Did you know Phillip Island is part of Norfolk Island national park? Phillip Island is an uninhabited island about seven kilometres from Norfolk. Like the Galapagos islands, Phillip Island is a true oceanic island providing a secure place for more than12 seabirds to breed. To tell visitors more about Phillip Island, the park has put together a new brochure on the island.
Read about Phillip Island | Download the new brochure
Bird watching at Norfolk Island
Norfolk Island is home to a fascinating mixture of land, water and seabirds. Norfolk Island National Park has put together a new Birds of Norfolk island National Park and Botanic Garden brochure. Presented in the brochure are a few of the more common and interesting species you may see in the park and garden.
Download the new Birds of Norfolk island National Park and Botanic Garden brochure >>
A walk in the park
The new walking tracks brochure (PDF 900 KB)
Did you know 94 per cent of visitors to Norfolk Island spend time in the national park and botanic garden?
This was one of the interesting findings from the 2009 visitor survey. Other interesting insights from the last survey included:
- While many enjoyed their walk in the park, many found the tracks to be steeper than expected and slippery to walk on.
- Many people found the signs and information brochures to be in need of a refresh.
- Nearly all commented on the clean and well maintained toilets, lookouts and picnic areas.
We have taken these comments on board and as a result, we have been very busy improving our visitor services.
If you haven't been to the botanic gardens for a while, or haven't taken a walk in the park, now is a great time to take a look. The weather is fine and the forest cool and shady. Our visitors love the completely transformed walks in the garden, and the new, easy walking surface on the tracks in the park.
If you're not sure which walk to take, pick up one of the new walking track brochures from the visitor information centre, online, or the viewing deck in the botanic garden. The new full colour brochure provides maps and information about each of the walks in the park and garden, including the length and difficulty of each walk.
In the pipeline are another two brochures, one to help with information about some of Norfolk's birds and the other about Norfolk's plants. We are also, with the help of Jodie Williams, developing a whole new set of signs for the park and garden - everything from new directional signs to new information signs.
We have learnt so much from our previous surveys, and they have been instrumental in helping us respond to visitor wants and needs. To see how we are going, and to give our summer visitors a say in the future management of the park and garden, we will be conducting another visitor survey over the next few weeks.
One of our visitor service coordinators will be surveying departing passengers from Norfolk Island. All departing visitors will be encouraged to complete and return a survey following check in. A good response rate will help us get a realistic view of visitor experiences and expectations.
Stay tuned in for the results and in the mean time - see you in the park!
New track opening
Under a clear blue sky the Norfolk Island Botanic Garden's refurbished tracks were officially opened by Peter Cochrane (Director of National Parks) and Vicky Jack (Minister for Education) yesterday.
The refurbished tracks form part of a major infrastructure upgrade in the garden, and are the culmination of ten months hard work by a dedicated task force.
Peter and Vicky officially cut the ribbon. Deserved mention was made of Brandt McRitchie and the Crosscut Construction team, for the quality of their construction work which greatly enhances a site of natural and educational values on Norfolk Island's rainforest plants.
Ms Jack emphasised that the garden has walks for all ages and abilities, and continues to surprise.
Download the new walking tracks brochure here (PDF 900 KB)
Park Manager Coral Rowston at the plant give-away table with Island residents
Threatened Species Day on Norfolk
The Norfolk Island park staff had a whole week focusing on threatened species - not just the one national day.
The week began with a give-away of 320 native plants from the park nursery, now in new homes across the island.
Park rangers talked endangered native species with year five and six students, who then planted 90 trees. Ranger Joel Christian showed local tour organisers and visitor information staff around the botanic garden and ranger Ron Ward and Norfolk Island Administration's Alan McNeil spent a day planting and tending one of the island's most critically endangered species, the Norfolk Island euphorbia.
School students help out on Norfolk
Fifty students over two afternoons cleared a huge area of weed and replaced it with around 80 Norfolk Island endemic plants.
The grade 5 and 6 students of Norfolk Island Central School have been learning about Australia's national parks and there is nothing like some hands-on experience to make the learning more fun.
Each day started with park manage Coral Rowston and ranger Joel Christian talking about the national park and park management work. The students learned about one of the worst weeds in the botanic garden - morning glory - an aggressive, destructive vine which is smothering the native plants.
They then set about clearing a particularly dense infestation with amazing enthusiasm and skill. Then it was time to plant. Over eighty trees went into the ground. The transformation of the area was spectacular to see - as was the children's laughter and enjoyment.
Two weeks on, after some great rain, every plant is alive and thriving - the area is looking great. Everyone had a fantastic time, with buses of children smiling, waving and saying how much they enjoyed it. They will be back next term to continue learning about their island's natural environment and to make their mark in the park.
Endangered parrots set free
8 May 2009
Two love-struck green parrots are soon to be united when Norfolk Island National Park and Botanic Garden releases its last captive green parrots into the wild.
The release marks the end of the green parrot captive breeding program, and opens the door to the courtship of 'Juliet', a captive female parrot, and 'Romeo', a wild male parrot.
Endangered parrots set free press release