The IBA encompasses the entire known breeding range of the critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrot as mapped in the Orange-bellied Parrot Recovery Plan. The IBA comprises a mosaic of eucalypt forest, rainforest, and moorland and sedgeland plains, extending throughout coastal and near-coastal areas from Birchs Inlet to Louisa Bay in south-west Tasmania. Most of the IBA has a rugged topography with extensive coastal lowland plains rising to rocky mountains. The IBA overlaps with Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park, Southwest Conservation Area and Southwest National Park. The islands of the Muttonbird, Swainson and Trumpeter groups, which lie offshore from the Melaleuca to Birchs Inlet IBA, and support globally significant numbers of one congregatory waterbird and three congregatory seabird species, comprise the separate Port Davey Islands IBA.
The buttongrass plains within the IBA support significant numbers of Ground Parrots. The restricted-range Tasmanian Native-hen and Yellow Wattlebird may occur in the IBA but no confirmed records are cited in Thomas (1979) or were submitted to the Atlas of Australian Birds for the period 1998 to 2008 (Atlas of Australian Birds database).
Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Secure adequate resourcing to facilitate ongoing research and management of Orange-bellied Parrot breeding sites. Maintain current regime of fire management, which accounts for habitat requirements of Orange-bellied Parrots. Control or minimise spread of Phytophthora cinnamomi and control or eradicate other invasive plants and animals.
Conservation responses/actions for key biodiversity
The Orange-bellied Parrot population is intensively monitored and breeding habitat for the species is actively managed (Commonwealth of Australia 2005).
IBA overlaps two national parks and one conservation park - see separate section for details.
Tasmanian State Government and managed by the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service.
BirdLife International (2021) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Melaleuca to Birchs Inlet. Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 18/05/2021.