Congratulations Brice Wells


Neville Brice Wells has been awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for services to conservation, particularly ornithology this Australia Day 2016.

After 22 years of ministry at Narembeen, Rivervale and Cottesloe Churches of Christ, Brice was selected as the warden at Eyre Bird Observatory. He had been a member of Birdlife Australia since 1981. After a year in this position Brice was to pioneer the Broome Bird Observatory. He soon became involved in scientific research as an amateur with the Gouldian Finch Recovery Programme which lasted six years. Other pioneering projects included The Red Goshawk (two years).

Brice was leader of Birds of Vine Thicket Searches and Birds and Animal Recovery of Road Verges, both in the Northern Territory. With his wife Gail they were wardens of these observatories at various times from 1987 to 1991. Brice and Gail arranged tours and courses to inform and educate with strong enthusiasm. Brice was the vetting officer in the Northern Territory for the Atlas of Australian Birds from 1997 to 2000.

When Brice returned to Perth in 2001 to retire, he became Community Liaison Officer for Birdlife Australia. Brice visited schools and community groups with talks and displays promoting the enjoyment of Australian native birds. Their membership has grown from 750 to over 1300 as a result of his infectious enthusiasm. He also founded and chaired the Community Education Committee in WA.

Brice has been awarded Volunteer of the Year, Birdlife, WA in 2006; a Distinguished Service Award, Birdlife, Australia in 2015; and now a Medal of the Order of Australia awarded on Australia Day 2016. This most recent award also happened to coincide with Brice’s 25th wedding anniversary with Gail.

We congratulate you Brice, and honour you for all that you have achieved in your usual gentle way.
Notes provided by Graham Carslake.