Fund for Avian Research (FAR)

The Australian Bird Study Association Inc. operates a fund to provide financial assistance to ornithological researchers, both amateur and professional. This fund, known as the ABSA Fund for Avian Research (FAR), comprises a special deposit account that was established from donations made to the Association to support research on Australian native birds.

The total amount available for grants in any year is limited to the interest earned on the FAR account over the preceding year. The total value of annual grants will not normally exceed $2,000 and is intended to provide researchers with assistance in the acquisition of research equipment and/or travel within Australia.

In awarding grants, the management committee of the Australian Bird Study Association will assess the quality of the project; the applicant’s ability to carry it out; a realistic costing and timetable; and the likelihood that successful completion of the research will lead to publication of the results.


Specifically, all FAR grant applications will be assessed using the following criteria:

  1. General Criteria
    How well does the proposal relate to ABSA’s objective “to support, encourage and promote the study of Australian birds and to contribute to their conservation” and the purpose of the avian research fund to “assist with the publication of information, the provision of education or the carrying on of research into various aspects of the avifauna of Australia”?
  2. Scientific and Technical Criteria
    a)  Does the proposal have a clearly stated objective?
    b)  Does the proposal include a clearly stated and practical methodology to achieve its objective?
    c)  Is the methodology consistent with good scientific design and with good practice (including ethical considerations)?
    d)  Is the achievement of the objective able to be measured or quantitatively assessed?
    e)  If successful, how significant and/or useful will the outcome be in terms of our knowledge of the Australian avifauna and its conservation?
    f)  How likely is the project to result in formal publication of results?
  3. Financial Criteria
    a)  Does the proposal provide a clear and itemised account of how the funds will be spent?
    b)  Are the allocations in the proposed budget appropriate and do they provide reasonable value for money?

All other things being equal, preference in grant applications will be given to members of the Association and first-time applicants. Individual grants will not normally exceed $2,000 for members and $1,000 for non-members.

Reports & Acknowledgements

Grantees are required to make a report to the ABSA no later than December in the year of bestowing of the grant. This report should outline the project’s results achieved so far and the acquittal of grant funds. Any funds not utilised in meeting the expenditure proposed in the FAR Grant Application should be repaid by the grantee at the time of making the above report.

Any publication arising from work supported by the ABSA FAR should include an acknowledgement to that effect.


Applications must be typed in the format of the FAR Grant Application form which is available on the ABSA website.

Download the FAR Application as a MS Word file

Download the FAR Application form as a PDF

Applicants should email their signed applications (as attachments either in .pdf or .doc formats) to:

The deadline for lodgement of applications will be 31st December each year. All applications will be considered and assessed at a meeting of the Committee as soon as possible thereafter. Applications may be granted in-full, in-part, or be rejected. Applicants will be notified in writing of the success or otherwise of their application. The Committee’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Previous Recipients of this award were:

2006G. Palmer
2007J. Rawsthorne$508.05
2008Dr P.-J. Guay
M. Todd
2011Dr S. Debus
J. Lewis
Ecology and behavior of the Little Eagle and Black Falcon
Movement and survival of Star Finches in WA
2012Dr P.-J. Guay
C. Young
T. Douglas
Hybridisation between Mallards and Pacific Black Ducks
Aggression in colonial finches
Thermoregulation in Australian birds
2013Dr P.-J. Guay
P. Hanke
Research on Grey Teals
Project to trial a feather ruler, that has been widely used in Europe since the 1970s, on Australian passerines
2014J.W. Hardy$1200Survey of Grey Grasswrens in NSW
2015Jacqueline Nguyen
Zoe Reynolds
A phylogenetic and morphological study of Australian passerine birds
The importance of unburnt patches for birds in a post-fire landscape
2016Dr. R.R. Farrell
D.J. Belder
Dr. C. Beckman
Movements of the endangered Grey Grasswren Amytornis barbatus barbatus within Caryapundy Swamp and its inflow and outflow flood channels located on Narriearra Station, north-west NSW.
Survival and persistence of woodland birds in restoration plantings
The evolution of female song in birds
2017 Anicee Lombal
Richard Allen & Mark Clayton
Ancient DNA Extractions and Next Generation Sequencing Analysis i on Providence Petrels;
Offset the cost of acquisition of equipment for cooperative bird banding projects in central NSW.