Mannikin sighting in Roebourne takes Pilbara bird photographer Tracey Heimberger by surprise

Headshot of Cheyanne Enciso
Cheyanne EncisoPilbara News
Pictorella mannikins have been seen in Roebourne.
Camera IconPictorella mannikins have been seen in Roebourne. Credit: Supplied/Tracey Heimberger

A passionate bird photographer has managed to grab a snap of a type of bird not seen in Roebourne for at least 18 years.

Pilbara Bird Tours owner Tracey Heimberger, who described herself as a “bird nerd”, said seeing pictorella mannikins took her by surprise.

“I’ve never seen a mannikin here before and I’ve been up here for 18 years; it just shocked me when I saw them,” she said.

Pictorella mannikins found in Roebourne.
Camera IconPictorella mannikins found in Roebourne. Credit: Supplied/Tracey Heimberger

“I’ve seen references where people have seen mannikins in this area but I have never seen any photos of them.”

The birds are usually found in the Kimberley region.

Ms Heimberger said she saw about a dozen of the medium-sized finch, also known as pictorella munia.

“I’ve already spoken to a couple of the Ngarluma Elders, the traditional owners from here, and I’d like to show all the Elders photos of them to ask them if they’ve seen them around here before,” she said.

“It’ll be very interesting to see what their reaction is.”

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