The Caragabal Bird Art is a modern, fine artwork located along the Mid-Western Highway in the small, rural village of Caragabal in Central West NSW. Officially opened on 16 December 2020, with an extension added in 2022, the artwork aims to celebrate the unique local bird life at Caragabal and raise awareness of local threatened species.
The Caragabal Bird Art Project was first envisioned by Weddin Landcare committee member Cr. Phillip Diprose. Phillip was inspired by Camila De Gregorio and Christopher Macaluso, designers and birders who visit his property near Grenfell to conduct bird surveys. When invited to speak to the children at Caragabal Public School as part of a STEM project, Cr. Diprose decided to pitch his idea to local students. They loved it!
A partnership then formed between Caragabal Public School, the Caragabal Progress Group and Weddin Landcare to bring the project idea to life, with generous input from local community members and businesses.
The project was also proudly supported by Central West Local Land Services through funding from the NSW Government and the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program. The landowner, Trevor McDonald, kindly allowed the artwork to be displayed on his shed.
Assisted by our local Landcare Coordinator, Melanie Cooper, primary students from Caragabal Public School researched and learned about the local bird species and some of the processes that are threatening them. The students then voted on which birds should be included on the artwork, based on ‘pitch’ presentations given by the students to their classmates. The students were very engaged in this project, with some students even begging to work on “their birds” during lunchtime!
In 2022, an extension saw the addition of three threatened bird species, including two critically endangered birds, to help raise awareness of these species and prompt action.
The artwork was designed by Eggpicnic, a Canberra based design studio operated by Camila De Gregorio and Christopher Macaluso, which is devoted to wildlife conservation. Camila and Chris were incredibly supportive of this project, being one of the first of their major artworks outside of Sydney and the first artwork where the whole community had been involved. They were also excited by the number and diversity of bird species the artwork would raise awareness of.
This wonderful, collaborative effort has resulted in an inspiring and meaningful flock in a location like no other! The birds featured on the artwork are a great representation of the birds found at Caragabal. They include (from left to right):
* Denotes a threatened species.
Click on the name of the bird above to learn more about these species. For further information on what can be done to assist our threatened species visit the NSW Government Department of Planning, Industry and Environment Threatened Species website. To become involved in local projects that will help to save our local bird species, please connect with Weddin Landcare.
To view samples of the students’ work and ‘pitch’ presentations or to hear what their favourite part of the project was, click on the links below.
Make sure you visit Caragabal to get a photo with these incredible birds, then spread the word to help conserve them.