Help protect our vulnerable glossies

Help protect our vulnerable glossies

The glossy black-cockatoo not only has unique and fascinating behaviour but it possesses a spectacular beauty. Sadly, it is also one of the rarest and most threatened species of cockatoo in Queensland. 

This captivating bird is now fighting for survival and is listed as vulnerable to extinction in Queensland under the Nature Conservation Act 1992.

“It’s now more important than ever to stand up for nature and protect the home of threatened species like the glossy black-cockatoo. Like so much of our wildlife, they face a perilous future from the ongoing threats of habitat loss and degradation” - Andrew, Protected Areas Campaign Manager

Your donation today can help protect vital habitats throughout Queensland so that threatened species like the glossy black-cockatoo are given the best chance of survival.


Female glossy black-cockatoo feeding on she-oak cones


Name: Glossy black-cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus lathami)

Conservation status in Qld: Vulnerable to extinction

Age: Life span can exceed 30 years

Well-managed national parks and private land reserves are our best chance to protect glossies and other threatened wildlife, providing a safe-haven and the space they need to survive.

That’s why your urgent support is needed.

With only 8.2% of land in Queensland currently protected, lower than any other state or territory in Australia, we urgently need to build a better system of protected areas across the state if we have any chance of preserving this precious species and their home.

Without national park protection our glossies, like many other threatened species, face a bleak future.

Your support will allow us to continue in the fight to protect Queensland’s threatened wildlife and keep pressure on the government to double the size of Queensland’s protected areas.

Please make your EOFY tax-deductible donation today and be the champion our glossies need.

    Habitat loss

Land clearing and the destruction of casuarina trees and mature eucalypts removes the glossies vital food resources and nesting sites

    Climate change 

More frequent and intense bush fires are contributing to habitat loss, removing large nesting trees and casuarina trees, which are particularly susceptible to fire 

    Feral predators 

With glossy black-cockatoos only laying one egg every two years, raids on nests by feral cats can affect breeding success. Possums are also known to raid the nests, with possum numbers typically increasing when native vegetation is cleared.

Without urgent action to address these threats, the glossy black-cockatoo’s status could become endangered in Queensland.

This friendly bird is quieter and smaller than other black cockatoo species and is usually seen in pairs or small numbers. 

Female glossy black-cockatoos have distinctive yellow colouring on the head and neck and a red to reddish-yellow tail. In contrast, males have brownish head colourings and bright red panels in the tail.

Whilst sightings are rare, the glossy black-cockatoo can be found mainly in eucalypt forests in South-East Queensland, Eastern and Northern New South Wales, extending slightly into Victoria with populations known in South Australia and Kangaroo Island [1].

Glossies are picky eaters, feeding almost entirely on the seeds found within casuarina (she-oak) cones. A layer of cracked cones under a casuarina tree is a tell-tale sign of a glossy.

They will favour one particular food tree over others in the area, returning to the same tree time and again. One study suggested that our smart glossies will test the quality of seeds on various trees in the area to find one with a high nutrient value [2]. 

A non-breeding glossy black-cockatoo can process 580 casuarina cones in a single day [3]

Glossies also have a preference when it comes to their nesting habitat for breeding, opting for large old trees with hollows, usually eucalypt trees. It can take 200 years for a tree hollow to form before possibly being used as a nesting habitat by a glossy [4].  



[1] Glossy Black Conservancy 2021
[2] State of New South Wales (Department of Planning, Industry and Environment) 2019
[3] Glossy Black Conservancy 2021
[4] Glossy Black Conservancy 2021

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