Eastern Australia: From the Outback to the Wet Tropics Trip Report, October 2023



By Andrew Walker


This Eastern Australia birding tour started in Melbourne, Victoria on the 30th of October 2023 and ended in Cairns, Queensland on the 16th of November 2023. This Australian bird tour focused on Australian endemic birds and Australian endemic bird families found in Victoria (including a brief foray into New South Wales) and southern and northern Queensland.

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Plains-wanderer was a big target on our Eastern Australia birding tour and proved a massive highlight, with three birds seen well. They formed part of an incredible evening birding session early in the tour, which was a tour highlight in its own right.

We recorded 379 bird species on this Australian birdwatching tour (three of these were heard only). The list of highlight birds seen is very long and included some of the best birds in Australia, including Southern Cassowary, Emu, Magpie Goose, Malleefowl, Spotted Nightjar, Tawny Frogmouth, Sarus Crane, Brolga, Red-chested Buttonquail, Banded Stilt, Plains-wanderer, Black-necked Stork, Great-billed Heron, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Grey Goshawk, Greater Sooty Owl, Lesser Sooty Owl, Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, Red-backed Kingfisher, Laughing Kookaburra, Blue-winged Kookaburra, Cockatiel, Glossy Black Cockatoo, Gang-gang Cockatoo, Pink Cockatoo, Superb Parrot, Budgerigar, Noisy Pitta, Albert’s Lyrebird, Superb Lyrebird, Green Catbird, Golden Bowerbird, Regent Bowerbird, Lovely Fairywren, Mallee Emu-wren, Painted Honeyeater, Macleay’s Honeyeater, Rufous Bristlebird, Australian Logrunner, Pied Monarch, Apostlebird, Paradise Riflebird, Victoria’s Riflebird, Flame Robin, Red-capped Robin, Bassian Thrush, and Diamond Firetail.

In addition to the great birds seen, we also found a nice selection of other animals, including 40 species of mammals, featuring highly sought species such as Koala, Platypus, Red Kangaroo, and Lumholtz’s Tree Kangaroo, 23 species of reptiles including Saltwater Crocodile and Boyd’s Forest Dragon, and numerous gorgeous butterflies, moths, dragonflies, and plants. Lists of birds and other plants and wildlife recorded during this Australian bird tour follow the report.

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Regent Bowerbird showed well while we were birding at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat.

Detailed Report

Day 1, 30th October 2023. Arrival in Melbourne

We arrived in Melbourne, Victoria in the late afternoon after completing our successful Tasmania bird tour, (trip report here). We had a delicious group welcome meal in the evening, discussing the plans for the coming few weeks of birding in Victoria, New South Wales, and southern and northern Queensland, Australia. The excitement was building.

Day 2, 31st October 2023. Birding Melbourne to Healesville

We headed through the northern suburbs of Melbourne, making a brief stop at a parkland, where we got some of the common Australian birds under our belt, with species such as Rainbow Lorikeet, Eastern Rosella, Australian Magpie, Pied Currawong, Grey Currawong, Noisy Miner, Red Wattlebird, Little Raven, and Magpie-lark all seen well, it was a great introduction.

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A pair of Rainbow Lorikeets were busy allopreening and allowed great views. A common but attractive bird in eastern areas of Australia and always a popular bird at the beginning of a tour.

Commencing our journey away from Melbourne city, we visited the beautiful Dandenong Ranges National Park, where we found our main target, the vocally magical Superb Lyrebird. While we were walking around the impressive and huge forest, we picked up many birds, including Crimson Rosella, Australian King Parrot, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Long-billed Corella, Australian Golden Whistler, Eastern Yellow Robin, Large-billed Scrubwren, White-browed Scrubwren, Grey Fantail, Eastern Spinebill, and White-throated Treecreeper.

After a wonderful lunch, we visited a wetland site, where we found Australasian Darter, Little Pied Cormorant, Little Black Cormorant, Australasian Grebe, Dusky Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Australasian Swamphen, Pacific Black Duck, Chestnut Teal, Grey Teal, Maned Duck, Masked Lapwing, Galah, Little Corella, Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Little Wattlebird, and a pair of White-winged Trillers. We then moved across to a sandy hillside, where we found six beautiful orchid species, including Large Flying Duck Orchid, Eastern Mantis Orchid, and Purple Beard Orchid. After enjoying these great plants (and a few White-winged Choughs), we continued our drive to our accommodation for the night in Healesville, picking up Black-shouldered Kite, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, and White-necked Heron along the way.

After a wonderful dinner at our lodge, featuring minor distractions from White-naped Honeyeater, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, and Eastern Spinebill, we went out for a rather enjoyable night walk. Top highlights from the walk included excellent looks at a Greater Sooty Owl, along with very good sightings of both Greater Glider and Yellow-bellied Glider. It had been some start to this Australian birding tour! 

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We enjoyed some excellent views of Greater Sooty Owl while out on a night walk.

Day 3, 1st November 2023. Healesville to Chiltern

After breakfast we birded around our accommodation at Healesville, enjoying sightings of Gang-gang Cockatoo, Australian King Parrot, Crimson Rosella, and Spotted Pardalote. We then drove up into Toolangi State Forest, where we found Flame Robin, Rose Robin, Red-browed Treecreeper, Satin Flycatcher, and more Gang-gang Cockatoos.

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Several Gang-gang Cockatoos were present in a small woodland.

After warming ourselves up with a hot drink, we visited the wetlands near Yea, where we added plenty of new birds to our growing list. Some of the top highlights included Bell Miner, Striated Pardalote, Leaden Flycatcher, White-throated Gerygone, and Little Eagle. Driving north, we made our way to the Warby-Ovens National Park, a beautiful region. Here we had brief sightings of Turquoise Parrot, but also had great looks at Red-capped Robin, Hooded Robin, Leaden Flycatcher, Western Gerygone, Varied Sittella, Rufous Songlark, and Rufous Whistler.

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Red-capped Robin was also added to our rapidly growing Australasian Robins family list.

As we explored the area further, we found Crested Pigeon, Galah, Eastern Rosella, Sacred Kingfisher, Laughing Kookaburra, White-winged Triller, nesting Restless Flycatchers, Willie Wagtail, Grey Fantail, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Whistling Kite, Brown Falcon, Nankeen Kestrel, Dusky Woodswallow, and Diamond Firetail.

Day 4, 2nd November 2023. Chiltern to Deniliquin                                         

A very long day, but one of the most enjoyable of the whole tour. We spent the morning birding around Chiltern-Mt. Pilot National Park and Warby-Ovens National Park, and the birding was great. We had excellent views of Painted Buttonquail, Pallid Cuckoo, Sacred Kingfisher, Red-rumped Parrot, Olive-backed Oriole, White-throated Treecreeper, Brown Treecreeper, White-winged Chough, Yellow-tufted Honeyeater, Fuscous Honeyeater, Black-chinned Honeyeater, Speckled Warbler, Jacky Winter, and Rufous Songlark. We also spotted Eastern Grey Kangaroo and Swamp Wallaby.

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An attractive Yellow-tufted Honeyeater from Chiltern-Mt. Pilot National Park.

After lunch we took a look at the mighty Murray River, here we found Nankeen Night Heron, Whistling Kite, Crimson (Yellow) Rosella, Noisy Friarbird, and Little Friarbird. We then completed our drive from Victoria to Deniliquin, New South Wales.

Our late afternoon and evening birding was simply sensational. We stopped at some bushland that was featuring lots of flowering plants, just north of Deniliquin, where we found Australian Owlet-nightjar, Horsfield’s Bronze Cuckoo, Black-shouldered Kite, Black Kite, Rainbow Bee-eater, Greater Bluebonnet, Black Honeyeater, Singing Honeyeater, Striped Honeyeater, Spiny-cheeked Honeyeater, Pied Butcherbird, Australian Raven, and Mistletoebird. Driving north we picked up our first family group of Emus and shortly after had close perched views of a pair of Wedge-tailed Eagles, with other species seen including Black-tailed Nativehen, Australian Crake, Red-kneed Dotterel, White-winged Fairywren, Singing (Horsfield’s) Bush Lark, Fairy Martin, Brown Songlark, and Australian Pipit.

After our picnic dinner it was time for the main event, our night birding around a section of the Hay Plains, and it was amazingly successful. During almost three hours of spotlighting, we found 17 species of birds and ten species of mammals. The highlight birds were three Plains-wanderers (one female and two males), the main target of our night trip which showed very well (see the trip report cover image). The supporting cast was rather special too, and featured Red-chested Buttonquail, Little Buttonquail, Stubble Quail, Banded Lapwing, Tawny Frogmouth, Australian Owlet-nightjar, Eastern Barn Owl, Australian Boobook, Brown Songlark, and Singing (Horsfield’s) Bush Lark. Mammal highlights included Red Kangaroo, Western Grey Kangaroo, Fat-tailed Dunnart, and Common Brushtail Possum.

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A massive bonus bird during our spotlighting session was this gorgeous adult female Red-chested Buttonquail.

Day 5, 3rd November 2023. Deniliquin to Ouyen                                             

After our late-night birding session the previous day, we made a later start today. After a relaxed breakfast in Deniliquin we birded near town, finding a number of parrots, including our main target for the morning, Superb Parrot. We also enjoyed sightings of Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Little Corella, Long-billed Corella, Galah, Crimson (Yellow) Rosella, Eastern Rosella, Red-rumped Parrot, and Rainbow Lorikeet. Other birds here included Noisy Friarbird, Little Friarbird, White-plumed Honeyeater, Brown Treecreeper, and Sacred Kingfisher.

A wetland near the town of Kerang was absolutely heaving with birds and was a special sight to see. We added loads of new birds to our list, including some good ones. Highlights here were Australian Pelican, Black Swan, Australian Shelduck, Pink-eared Duck, Hardhead, Hoary-headed Grebe, Great Cormorant, Glossy Ibis, White-necked Heron, Great Egret, Royal Spoonbill, Banded Stilt, Pied Stilt, Red-necked Avocet, Black-tailed Nativehen, and Whiskered Tern (along with lots more). A few small passerines were noted along the edge of the wetland, such as White-winged Fairywren and White-fronted Chat.

We continued our journey to Ouyen, where we arrived in the evening. Along the way we spotted Cockatiel, Budgerigar, Greater Bluebonnet, Spotted Harrier, White-browed Woodswallow, Masked Woodswallow, Black-faced Woodswallow, Southern Whiteface, Rufous Fieldwren, Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, and Australian Raven.  

Day 6, 4th November 2023. Birding Hattah-Kulkyne National Park            

We had an early morning birding session near Ouyen, where we found a beautiful pair of Rainbow Bee-eaters looking glorious in the morning light. We also found our first Purple-backed Fairywrens and White-browed Babblers of the tour here. Brown Goshawk, Fairy Martin, White-browed Woodswallow, and Masked Woodswallow were overhead. Nearby, a Peregrine Falcon was perched up on a building and showed well.

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A pair of Rainbow Bee-eaters showed well in the glorious early morning sunlight.

After breakfast we spent the rest of the day birding in the mallee habitats of Hattah-Kulkyne National Park and connected with a range of specialized and localized species with the highlights including Malleefowl and Mallee Emu-wren. There were plenty of other good birds picked up across the day, such as Emu, Regent Parrot, Mulga Parrot, Australian Ringneck, Budgerigar, Splendid Fairywren, White-eared Honeyeater, Yellow-plumed Honeyeater, Shy Heathwren, Inland Thornbill, Crested Bellbird, Gilbert’s Whistler, Australian Raven, Apostlebird, Southern Scrub Robin, and Chestnut-crowned Babbler.

After an early dinner we took a short drive from our accommodation and had the most incredible views of a pair of Pink Cockatoos, (formerly and until recently known as Major Mitchell’s Cockatoo). They dropped out of a tree and drank from a puddle at the side of the road a mere few meters in front of us, displaying their fantastic colorful crests! After the excitement of the cockatoo, we moved to a waterhole where, after a beautiful sunset, we found our main target, a Spotted Nightjar and then a Marble-faced Delma (an uncommon legless lizard). It had been another great day of birding in Australia.

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The views of Pink Cockatoo were simply incredible. What a stunning bird.

Day 7, 5th November 2023. Ouyen to Inglewood                                             

We left Ouyen in the early morning but didn’t get far from our accommodation before we made a stop to enjoy a pair of Fairy Martins sat on a phone wire. A couple of minutes later we found ourselves watching a pair of Pink Cockatoos, possibly the same pair we saw the previous evening. Further prolonged views of this most attractive of cockatoos were enjoyed by everyone. As we left Ouyen we found two more of our regional targets, firstly Red-backed Kingfisher and secondly White-backed Swallow. Both showed well, but the kingfisher was extra showy, perching close to us.

We moved down to the Sea Lake area, where, after breakfast, we visited an attractive pink lake. Here we enjoyed sightings of Rufous Fieldwren, White-winged Fairywren, Brown Falcon, Little Eagle, and Orange Chat.  

In the late morning we made the majority of our drive to Inglewood, our base for the night. We stopped at Mount Korong where we saw Spotted Harrier, Peregrine Falcon, Painted Honeyeater, and several Diamond Firetails and many other birds. Closer to Inglewood we found a waterhole that was, for a while, heaving with honeyeaters. We found White-fronted Honeyeater, White-eared Honeyeater, Yellow-plumed Honeyeater, Yellow-tufted Honeyeater, and Brown-headed Honeyeater. However, the activity was suddenly curtailed by an unseen raptor that flew through the area. We moved on to a different patch of bush, where we saw Western Whistler, Gilbert’s Whistler, Purple-backed Fairywren, Inland Thornbill, and Collared Sparrowhawk.

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Diamond Firetail is an attractive finch and we had good views of several birds coming to drink at a waterhole.

Day 8, 6th November 2023. Inglewood to Airey’s Inlet                                   

We left Inglewood in the early morning and made our way to a nearby seasonally flooded swamp. We spent a couple of hours scanning the area, finding several new birds and improving views of several others, including Red-kneed Dotterel, Black-fronted Dotterel, Masked Lapwing, Black-tailed Nativehen, Royal Spoonbill, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Australian Shelduck, Australasian Grebe, White-necked Heron, White-bellied Sea Eagle, White-breasted Woodswallow, and Rufous Songlark. We even had a great view of a Yellow-footed Antechinus out in the open.

After the wetland birding and breakfast we visited a couple of different blocks of forest, finding Brown Goshawk, Crimson Rosella, Eastern Rosella, Eastern Spinebill, Yellow-tufted Honeyeater, Fuscous Honeyeater, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, White-browed Babbler, Black-faced Cuckooshrike, Grey Shrikethrush, Olive-backed Oriole, Masked Woodswallow, White-browed Woodswallow, White-winged Chough, Spotted Pardalote, Weebill, Striated Thornbill, Buff-rumped Thornbill, Varied Sittella, Mistletoebird, and Scarlet Robin.  

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Scarlet Robin gave us some good views.

After lunch we made the journey down to Airey’s Inlet. We stopped at the town of Lara along the way, where we had a great birding session. Top sightings here included Cape Barren Goose, Latham’s Snipe, Australian Crake, Australasian Swamphen, Royal Spoonbill, Musk Lorikeet, Purple-crowned Lorikeet, Little Grassbird, Australian Reed Warbler, Golden-headed Cisticola, European Goldfinch, European Greenfinch, and Eurasian Tree Sparrow.  

Day 9, 7th November 2023. Airey’s Inlet to Melbourne                                  

The final day of our Victoria birding circuit (which included a brief foray into New South Wales), saw us start the day with some birding at Airey’s Inlet. We found our target Rufous Bristlebird, with several birds seen briefly at first, with lots of song, but then a pair of birds showed well in the scrub. A few Australian Gannets were noted offshore here. Because everyone on this tour had taken part in our Tasmania bird tour immediately prior to this tour, we opted to skip our usual other birding sites and target birds in the area as several of the usual target birds had already been seen well on the Tasmania tour. This decision allowed us to spend some extra time in the wonderful and bird-filled Werribee Western Treatment Plant (WTP).

Birding at Werribee WTP was excellent and we recorded over 85 species across a few hours at the site. The list of highlights is long (see the eBird list here), and included Brolga, Cape Barren Goose, Musk Duck, Blue-billed Duck, Pink-eared Duck, Australasian Shoveler, Australian Crake, Baillon’s Crake, Buff-banded Rail, Banded Stilt, Red-capped Plover, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Curlew Sandpiper, Red-necked Stint, Common Greenshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Black-tailed Godwit, Bar-tailed Godwit, Pied Cormorant, Royal Spoonbill, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Glossy Ibis, Australian Pelican, Great Crested Grebe, Hoary-headed Grebe, Australasian Grebe, Whiskered Tern, Swamp Harrier, White-fronted Chat, Golden-headed Cisticola, Australian Reed Warbler, Little Grassbird, Brown Songlark, and Fairy Martin. Wildfowl and shorebirds were present in the thousands, and it was a seriously impressive sight. We could have easily spent a week going around the site!

After our birding at Werribee WTP, we said farewell to our local guide, Simon, who had once again given us some once-in-a-lifetime birding memories and a fun trip.

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Rufous Bristlebird was skulking in the undergrowth but came out a couple of times for some quick photos.

Day 10, 8th November 2023. Melbourne to Brisbane, Brisbane birding and travel to O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat                                                                                                                 

We departed Melbourne for our flight to Brisbane in southern Queensland. Everything went smoothly and we arrived in the late morning. After collecting our vehicle, we took a short drive to the beach, where we had a picnic lunch and found the localized duo of Mangrove Honeyeater and Mangrove Gerygone. Our next stop was just to the south of Brisbane, where we found one of the top mammalian targets of the tour, Koala. We found two of them, a male and a female and got some nice views of these very special animals. To add to the exciting experience here, we also found a pair of Tawny Frogmouths at their nest, complete with two young nestlings. Around Brisbane we picked up several other birds, such as Channel-billed Cuckoo, Scaly-breasted Lorikeet, Brown Cuckoo Dove, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Brahminy Kite, Torresian Crow, Grey Butcherbird, and more.

We left the city behind to commence our drive up into the mountains for our stay at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat. Along the way, we made a brief stop to look at a roost of Grey-headed Flying Foxes and Little Black Flying Foxes. As we made the final ascent up the mountain we spotted a pair of Glossy Black Cockatoos, Wonga Pigeon, Red-necked Wallaby and Whiptail Wallaby. As we checked in to our accommodation, we were distracted by the magical sight of four Regent Bowerbirds (see photo in the trip report summary) sitting right in front of us. Add in the Australian King Parrots and Crimson Rosellas all around us and it was a pretty impressive welcoming committee!

Day 11, 9th November 2023. Birding at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat

We had a sensational day of birding at O’Reilly’s in Lamington National Park. We had an early start to maximize our time here and were handsomely rewarded. The first bird we saw in the morning was the highly localized Albert’s Lyrebird. It was a brief sighting of a shy bird, so we were left wanting a bit more. We moved to our next spot, where we had some really good views of several White-headed Pigeons, along with Eastern Yellow Robin and Australian Brushturkey. Both Regent Bowerbird and Satin Bowerbird were seen very well, as were Australian King Parrot and Crimson Rosella.

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Satin Bowerbird is easily found at O’Reilly’s Rainforest retreat and looks gorgeous in the correct light.

Entering the forest, we focused on the lyrebird and enjoyed a remarkable sighting of a pair of Albert’s Lyrebirds. The female gave some prolonged views as she foraged on the ground, then the male of the pair walked in, before it bounced up and flew high into a tree, where it continued to forage in a bird’s-nest fern, a remarkable and rarely seen behavior. After the lyrebird, which we watched for quite a while, we then also saw a pair of Noisy Pittas. As we walked to the restaurant for breakfast, we noted Wedge-tailed Eagle, Topknot Pigeon, Pied Currawong, Scarlet Myzomela, Eastern Spinebill, and Red-browed Finch.

After breakfast we took a forest walk where we concentrated on good views of the local birds, and these included common birds like Grey Shrikethrush, White-browed Scrubwren, Yellow-throated Scrubwren, Large-billed Scrubwren, Brown Gerygone, Brown Thornbill, Australian Golden Whistler, and Eastern Yellow Robin. Highlights during this birding session included excellent sightings of Paradise Riflebird (a male giving prolonged views), Eastern Whipbird, Rufous Fantail, Black-faced Monarch, Australian Logrunner, Green Catbird, and Bassian Thrush, not to mention the parrots and bowerbirds also enjoyed all morning! We found a giant Land Mullet (a very large skink) and just before lunch we saw our first Bush Stone-curlew of the tour.

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With patience, it is possible to get great views of the interesting Australian Logrunner in the forest at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat.

After a bit of a break in the early afternoon we headed back out onto the trails at O’Reilly’s for a brief walk. Again, we enjoyed many of the common birds of the area, but also spent time watching a female Paradise Riflebird and several Green Catbirds foraging in the tall rainforest trees. A Wonga Pigeon was walking around on a lawn, and we again had sightings of Albert’s Lyrebird. After another wonderful dinner at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, we took a walk back to our accommodation, finding Short-eared Brushtail Possum, Common Ringtail Possum, Red-legged Pademelon, and a roosting Russet-tailed Thrush!

Day 12, 10th November 2023. Birding at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat, travel to Brisbane then flight to Cairns.

We woke to a damp morning and were instantly grateful for the beautiful day we’d had yesterday, along with all of those great birds. As usual at O’Reilly’s, the great birds are never too far away, and right outside our rooms this morning we found several male Regent Bowerbirds, Satin Bowerbird, Australian King Parrot, Crimson Rosella, and best of all, a very showy male Paradise Riflebird. After a short walk, where we improved our views of Bassian Thrush, we had breakfast and reluctantly departed to Brisbane.

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Paradise Riflebird gave some very close views at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat.

Once back in Brisbane we caught our flight to Cairns in Far North Queensland. A whole new set of birds was awaiting us and after checking into our beachside hotel we had a brief birding session on the famous Cairns Esplanade where we found Australian Swiftlet, Torresian Imperial Pigeon, Australasian Figbird, Hornbill Friarbird, and Varied Honeyeater. The tidal state was not conducive for shorebirds, but there were three Black-fronted Dotterels and a pair of Masked Lapwings near our dinner restaurant.

Day 13, 11th November 2023. Great Barrier Reef trip and travel to Mission Beach

A walk along the Cairns Esplanade prior to our Great Barrier Reef boat trip gave us a few good birds, such as Pacific Golden Plover, Great Knot, Bar-tailed Godwit, Curlew Sandpiper, and Australian Pelican along the beach, with Torresian Imperial Pigeon, Nankeen Night Heron, Peaceful Dove, Australasian Figbird, and Brown Goshawk all also recorded. There was also a gathering of several Bush Stone-curlews in a car park!

The reef trip was, as always, an enjoyable day with lots of interesting birds seen well, such as Bridled Tern, Sooty Tern, Greater Crested Tern, Lesser Crested Tern, Brown Booby, Brown Noddy, and more (many of these birds breeding on Michaelmas Cay). In addition to the great views of the seabirds, we also enjoyed sightings of Leatherback Turtle, and some spectacular reef fish. After getting back to Cairns in the mid-afternoon, we drove south to Mission Beach for the night and enjoyed a celebratory dinner together.

Day 14, 12th November 2023. Birding Mission Beach and Atherton Tablelands

Another enjoyable day seeing some of the top birds and wildlife found in Australia. We started the day in Mission Beach, where we quickly found a Southern Cassowary. It was a brief view of a male slowly crossing a road right in front of us before it just melted away into the forest. Incredible, and a sighting that won’t be forgotten anytime soon. After enjoying the Southern Cassowary sighting in Mission Beach, we picked up several other birds, such as White-throated Needletail, Bar-shouldered Dove, Pheasant Coucal, Brush Cuckoo, Bush Stone-curlew, Osprey, Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, Azure Kingfisher, Forest Kingfisher, Yellow-spotted Honeyeater, Brown-backed Honeyeater, Dusky Myzomela, Varied Triller, Fairy Gerygone, Olive-backed Sunbird, and an impressive nesting colony of the vociferous Metallic Starlings.

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Yellow-spotted Honeyeater was heard and seen plenty of times during the day.

After leaving the coast in the middle of the morning, we stopped in at some rainforest, where we had sightings of Grey Goshawk, Spectacled Monarch, Pied Monarch, Victoria’s Riflebird (very briefly), Rufous Shrikethrush, Barred Cuckooshrike, Cryptic Honeyeater, and Pale-yellow Robin.

We enjoyed some lunch at Lake Eacham, and afterwards took a short walk through some more rainforest, where we saw Tooth-billed Bowerbird, Spotted Catbird (briefly), White-throated Treecreeper, Oriental Dollarbird, Grey-headed Robin, and Macleay’s Honeyeater.

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The range-restricted Tooth-billed Bowerbird gave some good views at his bower.

After checking into our rainforest accommodation, we visited a quiet river, where we found another of the most-wanted animals in Australia, the Platypus. We enjoyed prolonged views as one foraged right in front of us. We saw quite a few interesting mammals here and back at our accommodation in the late-afternoon and evening, including Agile Wallaby, Red-necked Pademelon, Musky Rat Kangaroo, Yellow-footed Antechinus, Bush Rat, Long-nosed Bandicoot, Spectacled Flying Fox, and Sugar Glider.

Day 15, 13th November 2023. Birding the Atherton Tablelands

We spent the day birding in the Atherton Tablelands, visiting a few different sites and habitats. In the morning, around our accommodation, we found Victoria’s Riflebird, Spotted Catbird, Tooth-billed Bowerbird, Barred Cuckooshrike, White-bellied Cuckooshrike, Wompoo Fruit Dove, Brown Cuckoo Dove, Grey-headed Robin, Rufous Shrikethrush, and more.

After breakfast we moved across to the Curtain Fig Tree National Park where we marveled at the giant and impressive fig tree, complete with an attractive Boyd’s Forest Dragon and showy male Australian Golden Whistler. Nearby we found Brolga, Sarus Crane, Spotted Harrier, Black Kite, Whistling Kite, Black-shouldered Kite, and Brown Falcon. A real treat was a Feral Dog (Dingo) which came purposefully through our view before disappearing into some tall vegetation.

Our next stop was the wonderful Hasties Swamp where we were greeted by thousands of Plumed Whistling Ducks and the highly anticipated Magpie Goose. Seeing and hearing vast numbers of these birds is always a thrill. At the swamp, we also found Wandering Whistling Duck, Hardhead, Grey Teal, Great Egret, Intermediate Egret, Nankeen Night Heron, Sarus Crane, Brolga, Australian Pelican, Royal Spoonbill, Australasian Darter, Red-kneed Dotterel, Black-fronted Dotterel, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, and Forest Kingfisher.

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Forest Kingfisher was glowing!

After lunch and a short break, we visited a small patch of rainforest, where, with a lot of searching, we found a family group of the tough-to-see, Lumholtz’s Tree Kangaroos. Another mammalian Australian tour highlight, for sure. After our dinner we went on a night safari, looking for birds, reptiles, and mammals, and it was highly successful. During a visit to some rainforest, we saw Lesser Sooty Owl, Bush Stone-curlew, Striped Possum, Green Ringtail Possum, Common (Coppery) Brushtail Possum, Long-nosed Bandicoot, Giant White-tailed Rat, Red-legged Pademelon, Northern Leaf-tail Gecko, Boyd’s Forest Dragon, and Amethystine Python.    

Day 16, 14th November 2023. Birding the Atherton Tablelands and Mareeba area

We started our day birding at Lake Eacham, getting the morning started with great views of Victoria’s Riflebird, Spotted Catbird, Superb Fruit Dove, Pacific Emerald Dove, Double-eyed Fig Parrot, Barred Cuckooshrike, and many more top-quality birds.

After breakfast we left Lake Eacham for Mount Hypipamee. A stop along the way gave us Tawny Grassbird, Golden-headed Cisticola, Chestnut-breasted Mannikin, three huge Channel-billed Cuckoos, and the goliath Wedge-tailed Eagle at close range. On arrival at our next rainforest birding patch, we headed into the forest and staked out a Golden Bowerbird bower. We got brief views of an adult male, followed by a female, and then an immature male that gave brilliant prolonged and close views. Further exploration of the forest resulted in sightings of Amethystine Python, Bridled Honeyeater, Bower’s Shrikethrush, Mountain Thornbill, Atherton Scrubwren, Pied Monarch, Pale-yellow Robin, Pacific Baza, and Peregrine Falcon.

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Victoria’s Riflebird was the second bird-of-paradise enjoyed on this Australian bird tour.

After lunch we came off the fertile Atherton Tablelands and down into the drier zone around the small town of Mareeba. We visited Granite Gorge, where we had excellent close looks at the rather cute Mareeba Rock Wallaby, but also found some good birds, with the highlights (of which there were many), including Great Bowerbird (meticulously attending to his bower), Squatter Pigeon, Pale-headed Rosella, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Green Oriole, Olive-backed Oriole, Yellow Honeyeater, Leaden Flycatcher, and more.

After checking into our accommodation on the edge of town, we birded at a site just outside Mareeba, where we added a few new species to our list, such as displaying Australian Bustards, Australian Hobby, Red-backed Fairywren, and Blue-winged Kookaburra.  

Day 17, 15th November 2023. Birding from Mareeba to the Mount Lewis area, Daintree River dusk boat trip, and travel to Cairns

We spent the morning birding in the dry habitats near Mareeba, where we saw Red-winged Parrot, Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, Lemon-bellied Flyrobin, White-throated Honeyeater, Yellow Honeyeater, Brown Honeyeater, Brush Cuckoo, Sacred Kingfisher, and Blue-winged Kookaburra. An area of swamp was full of birds, including the giant Black-necked Stork and Brolga, along with Radjah Shelduck, Red-kneed Dotterel, and lots more, including numerous Black Kites and Whistling Kites.

We followed up the dry country birding with some time in mixed eucalyptus and rainforest (which was also actually quite dry this year), where we found Lovely Fairywren, Northern Fantail, Rufous Fantail, Superb Fruit Dove, Pale-yellow Robin, and Yellow-breasted Boatbill.

eastern australia report

A pair of Lovely Fairywrens were enjoyed on our final full day of birding on this Australian bird tour, this male showed very well.

In the afternoon, we had a final couple of rainforest patches to check, and we were successful in finding a pair of Papuan Frogmouths and then the spectacular Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher, the latter a fresh arrival from New Guinea and staking a claim to his summer breeding territory.

The final birding of the day was on the Daintree River, where we enjoyed a dusk boat cruise, adding several new species for the tour, and improving views and photos of others, including Spotted Whistling Duck, Radjah Shelduck, Papuan Frogmouth, Great-billed Heron, Black Bittern, Azure Kingfisher, Brahminy Kite, Pacific Koel, Green Oriole, Shining Flycatcher, Wompoo Fruit Dove (on a nest), and plenty more. Additional highlights included Green Tree Snake and Saltwater Crocodile sightings.

After enjoying our Daintree River boat trip, we drove back to Cairns for the final night of the tour. During our drive back to Cairns we discussed possible “bird of the trip” candidates, and it was very hard to pick a top bird given all the high-quality birds we’d seen over the previous weeks. Some of the favorites included (in no particular order!); Pink Cockatoo, Red-backed Fairywren, Southern Cassowary, Plains-wanderer, Golden Bowerbird, and Red-chested Buttonquail.

Day 18, 16th November 2023. Birding Cairns Esplanade and tour concluded with departure from Cairns

We had a final breakfast in Cairns and said goodbye to Steve, who had been an excellent and incredibly knowledgeable local guide during our time in Queensland. We had a final, short birding session along Cairns Esplanade as the tidal situation was perfect. Numbers of shorebirds were lower than is often the case at this time of year, but we added several new species for the tour, including Pacific Reef Heron, Australian Tern, Caspian Tern, Far Eastern Curlew, Eurasian Whimbrel, and Grey-tailed Tattler. We also gained some very close views of other species seen previously, such as Bar-tailed Godwit, Common Greenshank, Curlew Sandpiper, Pied Stilt, Black-fronted Dotterel, Silver Gull, and Little Tern.

With our final birding session complete it was time for saying goodbye. It had been an incredibly fun tour, with lots of laughs along the way, as well as been packed full of some of the best birds of Australia and some of the most wanted mammals on the continent. A huge thank you to everyone for making this such a fantastic tour, I look forward to traveling with you all again soon. Trip lists for birds, other wildlife, and interesting plants follow.  

eastern australia report

Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher was a final highlight of the rainforest element of this Australian birding tour.

Bird ListFollowing IOC (13.2)

Birds ‘heard only’ are marked with (H) after the common name, all other species were seen. The following notation after species names is used to show conservation status following BirdLife International: EN = Endangered, VU = Vulnerable.

Common NameScientific Name
Cassowaries, Emu (Casuariidae)
Southern CassowaryCasuarius casuarius
EmuDromaius novaehollandiae
Magpie Goose (Anseranatidae)
Magpie GooseAnseranas semipalmata
Ducks, Geese, Swans (Anatidae)
Spotted Whistling DuckDendrocygna guttata
Plumed Whistling DuckDendrocygna eytoni
Wandering Whistling DuckDendrocygna arcuate
Cape Barren GooseCereopsis novaehollandiae
Black SwanCygnus atratus
Radjah ShelduckRadjah radjah
Australian ShelduckTadorna tadornoides
Pink-eared DuckMalacorhynchus membranaceus
Maned DuckChenonetta jubata
Australasian ShovelerSpatula rhynchotis
Pacific Black DuckAnas superciliosa
Grey TealAnas gracilis
Chestnut TealAnas castanea
HardheadAythya australis
Blue-billed DuckOxyura australis
Musk DuckBiziura lobata
Megapodes (Megapodiidae)
Australian BrushturkeyAlectura lathami
Malleefowl – VULeipoa ocellata
Orange-footed ScrubfowlMegapodius reinwardt
Guineafowl (Numididae)
Helmeted GuineafowlNumida meleagris
Pheasants & Allies (Phasianidae)
Brown Quail (H)Synoicus ypsilophorus
Stubble QuailCoturnix pectoralis
Nightjars (Caprimulgidae)
Spotted NightjarEurostopodus argus
Frogmouths (Podargidae)
Papuan FrogmouthPodargus papuensis
Tawny FrogmouthPodargus strigoides
Owlet-nightjars (Aegothelidae)
Australian Owlet-nightjarAegotheles cristatus
Swifts (Apodidae)
Australian SwiftletAerodramus terraereginae
White-throated NeedletailHirundapus caudacutus
Bustards (Otididae)
Australian BustardArdeotis australis
Cuckoos (Cuculidae)
Pheasant CoucalCentropus phasianinus
Pacific KoelEudynamys orientalis
Channel-billed CuckooScythrops novaehollandiae
Horsfield’s Bronze CuckooChrysococcyx basalis
Shining Bronze CuckooChrysococcyx lucidus
Little Bronze CuckooChrysococcyx minutillus
Pallid CuckooCacomantis pallidus
Fan-tailed CuckooCacomantis flabelliformis
Brush CuckooCacomantis variolosus
Pigeons, Doves (Columbidae)
Rock Dove [Feral Pigeon]Columba livia dom.
White-headed PigeonColumba leucomela
Spotted DoveSpilopelia chinensis
Brown Cuckoo-DoveMacropygia phasianella
Pacific Emerald DoveChalcophaps longirostris
Common BronzewingPhaps chalcoptera
Brush BronzewingPhaps elegans
Crested PigeonOcyphaps lophotes
Squatter PigeonGeophaps scripta
Wonga PigeonLeucosarcia melanoleuca
Peaceful DoveGeopelia placida
Bar-shouldered DoveGeopelia humeralis
Wompoo Fruit DovePtilinopus magnificus
Superb Fruit DovePtilinopus superbus
Rose-crowned Fruit Dove (H)Ptilinopus regina
Torresian Imperial PigeonDucula spilorrhoa
Topknot PigeonLopholaimus antarcticus
Rails, Crakes & Coots (Rallidae)
Buff-banded RailHypotaenidia philippensis
Australian CrakePorzana fluminea
Black-tailed NativehenTribonyx ventralis
Dusky MoorhenGallinula tenebrosa
Eurasian CootFulica atra
Australasian SwamphenPorphyrio melanotus
Baillon’s CrakeZapornia pusilla
Spotless CrakeZapornia tabuensis
Cranes (Gruidae)
Sarus Crane – VUAntigone Antigone
BrolgaAntigone rubicunda
Grebes (Podicipedidae)
Australasian GrebeTachybaptus novaehollandiae
Hoary-headed GrebePoliocephalus poliocephalus
Great Crested GrebePodiceps cristatus
Buttonquail (Turnicidae)
Painted ButtonquailTurnix varius
Red-chested ButtonquailTurnix pyrrhothorax
Little ButtonquailTurnix velox
Stone-curlews, Thick-knees (Burhinidae)
Bush Stone-curlewBurhinus grallarius
Oystercatchers (Haematopodidae)
Pied OystercatcherHaematopus longirostris
Stilts, Avocets (Recurvirostridae)
Pied StiltHimantopus leucocephalus
Banded StiltCladorhynchus leucocephalus
Red-necked AvocetRecurvirostra novaehollandiae
Plovers (Charadriidae)
Banded LapwingVanellus tricolor
Masked LapwingVanellus miles
Red-kneed DotterelErythrogonys cinctus
Pacific Golden PloverPluvialis fulva
Red-capped PloverCharadrius ruficapillus
Black-fronted DotterelElseyornis melanops
Jacanas (Jacanidae)
Comb-crested JacanaIrediparra gallinacea
Plains-wanderer (Pedionomidae)
Plains-wanderer – ENPedionomus torquatus
Sandpipers, Snipes (Scolopacidae)
Eurasian WhimbrelNumenius phaeopus
Far Eastern Curlew – ENNumenius madagascariensis
Bar-tailed GodwitLimosa lapponica
Black-tailed GodwitLimosa limosa
Ruddy TurnstoneArenaria interpres
Great Knot – ENCalidris tenuirostris
Sharp-tailed Sandpiper – VUCalidris acuminata
Curlew SandpiperCalidris ferruginea
Red-necked StintCalidris ruficollis
Latham’s SnipeGallinago hardwickii
Grey-tailed TattlerTringa brevipes
Marsh SandpiperTringa stagnatilis
Common GreenshankTringa nebularia
Gulls, Terns, Skimmers (Laridae)
Brown NoddyAnous stolidus
Silver GullChroicocephalus novaehollandiae
Australian TernGelochelidon macrotarsa
Caspian TernHydroprogne caspia
Greater Crested TernThalasseus bergii
Lesser Crested TernThalasseus bengalensis
Little TernSternula albifrons
Common TernSterna hirundo
Bridled TernOnychoprion anaethetus
Sooty TernOnychoprion fuscatus
Whiskered TernChlidonias hybrida
Storks (Ciconiidae)
Black-necked StorkEphippiorhynchus asiaticus
Gannets, Boobies (Sulidae)
Australasian GannetMorus serrator
Red-footed BoobySula sula
Brown BoobySula leucogaster
Anhingas, Darters (Anhingidae)
Australasian DarterAnhinga novaehollandiae
Cormorants, Shags (Phalacrocoracidae)
Little Pied CormorantMicrocarbo melanoleucos
Australian Pied CormorantPhalacrocorax varius
Little Black CormorantPhalacrocorax sulcirostris
Great CormorantPhalacrocorax carbo
Ibises, Spoonbills (Threskiornithidae)
Australian White IbisThreskiornis molucca
Straw-necked IbisThreskiornis spinicollis
Glossy IbisPlegadis falcinellus
Royal SpoonbillPlatalea regia
Yellow-billed SpoonbillPlatalea flavipes
Herons, Bitterns (Ardeidae)
Black BitternIxobrychus flavicollis
Nankeen Night HeronNycticorax caledonicus
Eastern Cattle EgretBubulcus coromandus
White-necked HeronArdea pacifica
Great-billed HeronArdea sumatrana
Great EgretArdea alba
Intermediate (Plumed) EgretArdea intermedia
White-faced HeronEgretta novaehollandiae
Little EgretEgretta garzetta
Pacific Reef HeronEgretta sacra
Pelicans (Pelecanidae)
Australian PelicanPelecanus conspicillatus
Ospreys (Pandionidae)
OspreyPandion haliaetus
Kites, Hawks, Eagles (Accipitridae)
Black-shouldered KiteElanus axillaris
Pacific BazaAviceda subcristata
Little EagleHieraaetus morphnoides
Wedge-tailed EagleAquila audax
Grey GoshawkAccipiter novaehollandiae
Brown GoshawkAccipiter fasciatus
Collared SparrowhawkAccipiter cirrocephalus
Swamp HarrierCircus approximans
Spotted HarrierCircus assimilis
Black KiteMilvus migrans
Whistling KiteHaliastur sphenurus
Brahminy KiteHaliastur indus
White-bellied Sea EagleIcthyophaga leucogaster
Barn Owls (Tytonidae)
Greater Sooty OwlTyto tenebricosa
Lesser Sooty OwlTyto multipunctata
Eastern Barn OwlTyto javanica
Owls (Strigidae)
Australian BoobookNinox boobook
Rollers (Coraciidae)
Oriental DollarbirdEurystomus orientalis
Kingfishers (Alcedinidae)
Buff-breasted Paradise KingfisherTanysiptera sylvia
Laughing KookaburraDacelo novaeguineae
Blue-winged KookaburraDacelo leachii
Forest KingfisherTodiramphus macleayii
Sacred KingfisherTodiramphus sanctus
Red-backed KingfisherTodiramphus pyrrhopygius
Azure KingfisherCeyx azureus
Bee-eaters (Meropidae)
Rainbow Bee-eaterMerops ornatus
Caracaras, Falcons (Falconidae)
Nankeen KestrelFalco cenchroides
Australian HobbyFalco longipennis
Brown FalconFalco berigora
Peregrine FalconFalco peregrinus
Cockatoos (Cacatuidae)
CockatielNymphicus hollandicus
Red-tailed Black CockatooCalyptorhynchus banksii
Glossy Black Cockatoo – VUCalyptorhynchus lathami
Yellow-tailed Black CockatooZanda funerea
Gang-gang Cockatoo – VUCallocephalon fimbriatum
GalahEolophus roseicapilla
Pink CockatooCacatua leadbeateri
Long-billed CorellaCacatua tenuirostris
Little CorellaCacatua sanguinea
Sulphur-crested CockatooCacatua galerita
Old World Parrots (Psittaculidae)
Superb ParrotPolytelis swainsonii
Regent ParrotPolytelis anthopeplus
Australian King ParrotAlisterus scapularis
Red-winged ParrotAprosmictus erythropterus
Red-rumped ParrotPsephotus haematonotus
Eastern BluebonnetNorthiella haematogaster
Mulga ParrotPsephotellus varius
Crimson RosellaPlatycercus elegans
Pale-headed RosellaPlatycercus adscitus
Eastern RosellaPlatycercus eximius
Australian RingneckBarnardius zonarius
Turquoise ParrotNeophema pulchella
Purple-crowned LorikeetParvipsitta porphyrocephala
Little LorikeetParvipsitta pusilla
Musk LorikeetGlossopsitta concinna
Scaly-breasted LorikeetTrichoglossus chlorolepidotus
Rainbow LorikeetTrichoglossus moluccanus
BudgerigarMelopsittacus undulatus
Double-eyed Fig ParrotCyclopsitta diophthalma
Pittas (Pittidae)
Noisy PittaPitta versicolor
Lyrebirds (Menuridae)
Albert’s LyrebirdMenura alberti
Superb LyrebirdMenura novaehollandiae
Bowerbirds (Ptilonorhynchidae)
Green CatbirdAiluroedus crassirostris
Spotted CatbirdAiluroedus maculosus
Tooth-billed BowerbirdScenopoeetes dentirostris
Golden BowerbirdPrionodura newtoniana
Regent BowerbirdSericulus chrysocephalus
Satin BowerbirdPtilonorhynchus violaceus
Great BowerbirdChlamydera nuchalis
Australasian Treecreepers (Climacteridae)
White-throated TreecreeperCormobates leucophaea
Red-browed TreecreeperClimacteris erythrops
Brown TreecreeperClimacteris picumnus
Australasian Wrens (Maluridae)
Lovely FairywrenMalurus amabilis
Purple-backed FairywrenMalurus assimilis
Superb FairywrenMalurus cyaneus
Splendid FairywrenMalurus splendens
Red-backed FairywrenMalurus melanocephalus
White-winged FairywrenMalurus leucopterus
Mallee Emu-wren – ENStipiturus mallee
Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)
Eastern SpinebillAcanthorhynchus tenuirostris
Orange ChatEpthianura aurifrons
White-fronted ChatEpthianura albifrons
Brown-backed HoneyeaterRamsayornis modestus
Black HoneyeaterSugomel nigrum
Dusky MyzomelaMyzomela obscura
Scarlet MyzomelaMyzomela sanguinolenta
Little FriarbirdPhilemon citreogularis
Hornbill FriarbirdPhilemon yorki
Noisy FriarbirdPhilemon corniculatus
Macleay’s HoneyeaterXanthotis macleayanus
Striped HoneyeaterPlectorhyncha lanceolata
Painted HoneyeaterGrantiella picta
Crescent HoneyeaterPhylidonyris pyrrhopterus
New Holland HoneyeaterPhylidonyris novaehollandiae
Brown HoneyeaterLichmera indistincta
White-eared HoneyeaterNesoptilotis leucotis
Blue-faced HoneyeaterEntomyzon cyanotis
Black-chinned HoneyeaterMelithreptus gularis
Brown-headed HoneyeaterMelithreptus brevirostris
White-throated HoneyeaterMelithreptus albogularis
White-naped HoneyeaterMelithreptus lunatus
Yellow HoneyeaterStomiopera flava
Yellow-spotted HoneyeaterMeliphaga notata
Lewin’s HoneyeaterMeliphaga lewinii
White-fronted HoneyeaterPurnella albifrons
Yellow-tufted HoneyeaterLichenostomus melanops
Cryptic HoneyeaterMicroptilotis imitatrix
Varied HoneyeaterGavicalis versicolor
Mangrove HoneyeaterGavicalis fasciogularis
Singing HoneyeaterGavicalis virescens
Fuscous HoneyeaterPtilotula fusca
Yellow-plumed HoneyeaterPtilotula ornata
White-plumed HoneyeaterPtilotula penicillata
Yellow-faced HoneyeaterCaligavis chrysops
Little WattlebirdAnthochaera chrysoptera
Red WattlebirdAnthochaera carunculata
Spiny-cheeked HoneyeaterAcanthagenys rufogularis
Bridled HoneyeaterBolemoreus frenatus
Bell MinerManorina melanophrys
Noisy MinerManorina melanocephala
Yellow-throated MinerManorina flavigula
Bristlebirds (Dasyornithidae)
Rufous BristlebirdDasyornis broadbenti
Pardalotes (Pardalotidae)
Spotted PardalotePardalotus punctatus
Striated PardalotePardalotus striatus
Australasian Warblers (Acanthizidae)
WeebillSmicrornis brevirostris
Striated FieldwrenCalamanthus fuliginosus
Rufous FieldwrenCalamanthus campestris
Shy HeathwrenHylacola cauta
Speckled WarblerPyrrholaemus sagittatus
Yellow-throated ScrubwrenNeosericornis citreogularis
Large-billed ScrubwrenSericornis magnirostra
Atherton Scrubwren – VUSericornis keri
White-browed ScrubwrenSericornis frontalis
Brown GerygoneGerygone mouki
Mangrove GerygoneGerygone levigaster
Western GerygoneGerygone fusca
Large-billed GerygoneGerygone magnirostris
White-throated GerygoneGerygone olivacea
Fairy GerygoneGerygone palpebrosa
Mountain Thornbill – VUAcanthiza katherina
Brown ThornbillAcanthiza pusilla
Inland ThornbillAcanthiza apicalis
Chestnut-rumped ThornbillAcanthiza uropygialis
Buff-rumped ThornbillAcanthiza reguloides
Yellow-rumped ThornbillAcanthiza chrysorrhoa
Yellow ThornbillAcanthiza nana
Striated ThornbillAcanthiza lineata
Southern Whiteface – VUAphelocephala leucopsis
Australasian Babblers (Pomatostomidae)
Grey-crowned BabblerPomatostomus temporalis
White-browed BabblerPomatostomus superciliosus
Chestnut-crowned BabblerPomatostomus ruficeps
Logrunners (Orthonychidae)
Australian LogrunnerOrthonyx temminckii
Whipbirds (Psophodidae)
Eastern WhipbirdPsophodes olivaceus
Boatbills (Machaerirhynchidae)
Yellow-breasted BoatbillMachaerirhynchus flaviventer
Woodswallows, Butcherbirds & Allies (Artamidae)
White-breasted WoodswallowArtamus leucorynchus
Masked WoodswallowArtamus personatus
White-browed WoodswallowArtamus superciliosus
Black-faced WoodswallowArtamus cinereus
Dusky WoodswallowArtamus cyanopterus
Black ButcherbirdMelloria quoyi
Australian MagpieGymnorhina tibicen
Grey ButcherbirdCracticus torquatus
Pied ButcherbirdCracticus nigrogularis
Pied CurrawongStrepera graculina
Grey CurrawongStrepera versicolor
Cuckooshrikes (Campephagidae)
Barred CuckooshrikeCoracina lineata
Black-faced CuckooshrikeCoracina novaehollandiae
White-bellied CuckooshrikeCoracina papuensis
White-winged TrillerLalage tricolor
Varied TrillerLalage leucomela
Sittellas (Neosittidae)
Varied SittellaDaphoenositta chrysoptera
Australo-Papuan Bellbirds (Oreoicidae)
Crested Bellbird (H)Oreoica gutturalis
Whistlers & Allies (Pachycephalidae)
Gilbert’s WhistlerPachycephala inornata
Grey WhistlerPachycephala simplex
Australian Golden WhistlerPachycephala pectoralis
Western WhistlerPachycephala fuliginosa
Rufous WhistlerPachycephala rufiventris
Bower’s Shrikethrush – VUColluricincla boweri
Rufous ShrikethrushColluricincla rufogaster
Grey ShrikethrushColluricincla harmonica
Figbirds, Old World Orioles, Piopios (Oriolidae)
Australasian FigbirdSphecotheres vieilloti
Olive-backed OrioleOriolus sagittatus
Green OrioleOriolus flavocinctus
Drongos (Dicruridae)
Spangled DrongoDicrurus bracteatus
Fantails (Rhipiduridae)
Willie WagtailRhipidura leucophrys
Northern FantailRhipidura rufiventris
Grey FantailRhipidura albiscapa
Rufous FantailRhipidura rufifrons
Monarchs (Monarchidae)
Spectacled MonarchSymposiachrus trivirgatus
Black-faced MonarchMonarcha melanopsis
Pied MonarchArses kaupi
Magpie-larkGrallina cyanoleuca
Leaden FlycatcherMyiagra rubecula
Satin FlycatcherMyiagra cyanoleuca
Shining FlycatcherMyiagra alecto
Restless FlycatcherMyiagra inquieta
Crows, Jays (Corvidae)
Torresian CrowCorvus orru
Little RavenCorvus mellori
Australian RavenCorvus coronoides
Australian Mudnesters (Corcoracidae)
White-winged ChoughCorcorax melanorhamphos
ApostlebirdStruthidea cinerea
Birds-of-paradise (Paradisaeidae)
Paradise RiflebirdPtiloris paradiseus
Victoria’s Riflebird – VUPtiloris victoriae
Australasian Robins (Petroicidae)
Pale-yellow RobinTregellasia capito
Eastern Yellow RobinEopsaltria australis
Hooded RobinMelanodryas cucullata
Grey-headed RobinHeteromyias cinereifrons
Southern Scrub RobinDrymodes brunneopygia
Lemon-bellied FlyrobinMicroeca flavigaster
Jacky WinterMicroeca fascinans
Rose RobinPetroica rosea
Flame RobinPetroica phoenicea
Scarlet RobinPetroica boodang
Red-capped RobinPetroica goodenovii
Larks (Alaudidae)
Singing (Horsfield’s) Bush LarkMirafra javanica
Eurasian SkylarkAlauda arvensis
Swallows, Martins (Hirundinidae)
White-backed SwallowCheramoeca leucosterna
Welcome SwallowHirundo neoxena
Fairy MartinPetrochelidon ariel
Reed Warblers & Allies (Acrocephalidae)
Australian Reed WarblerAcrocephalus australis
Grassbirds & Allies (Locustellidae)
Little GrassbirdPoodytes gramineus
Brown SonglarkCincloramphus cruralis
Rufous SonglarkCincloramphus mathewsi
Tawny GrassbirdCincloramphus timoriensis
Cisticolas & Allies (Cisticolidae)
Golden-headed CisticolaCisticola exilis
White-eyes (Zosteropidae)
SilvereyeZosterops lateralis
Starlings, Rhabdornises (Sturnidae)
Metallic StarlingAplonis metallica
Common MynaAcridotheres tristis
Common StarlingSturnus vulgaris
Thrushes (Turdidae)
Russet-tailed ThrushZoothera heinei
Bassian ThrushZoothera lunulata
Common BlackbirdTurdus merula
Flowerpeckers (Dicaeidae)
MistletoebirdDicaeum hirundinaceum
Sunbirds (Nectariniidae)
Olive-backed (Sahul) SunbirdCinnyris jugularis
Old World Sparrows, Snowfinches (Passeridae)
Eurasian Tree SparrowPasser montanus
House SparrowPasser domesticus
Waxbills, Munias & Allies (Estrildidae)
Diamond Firetail – VUStagonopleura guttata
Red-browed FinchNeochmia temporalis
Chestnut-breasted MannikinLonchura castaneothorax
Wagtails, Pipits (Motacillidae)
Australian PipitAnthus australis
Finches, Euphonias (Fringillidae)
European GreenfinchChloris chloris
European GoldfinchCarduelis carduelis
Total seen376
Total heard only3
Total recorded379

Mammal List

Common NameScientific Name
Felids (Felidae)
Domestic (Feral) CatFelis catus
Canids (Canidae)
Feral Dog (Dingo)Canis familiaris dingo
Red FoxVulpes vulpes
Deer (Cervidae)
Sambar (H)Rusa unicolor
Old World Fruit Bats (Pteropodidae)
Black Flying FoxPteropus alecto
Spectacled Flying FoxPteropus conspicillatus
Grey-headed Flying FoxPteropus poliocephalus
Dasyures (Dasyuridae)
Yellow-footed AntechinusAntechinus flavipes
Fat-tailed DunnartSminthopsis crassicaudata
Musky Rat Kangaroos (Hypsiprymnodontidae)
Musky Rat KangarooHypsiprymnodon moschatus
Kangaroos, Wallabies, and Allies (Macropodidae)
Lumholtz’s Tree KangarooDendrolagus lumholtzi
Whiptail WallabyNotamacropus parryi
Agile WallabyNotamacropus agilis
Red-necked WallabyNotamacropus rufogriseus
Western Grey KangarooMacropus fuliginosus
Eastern Grey KangarooMacropus giganteus
Red KangarooOsphranter rufus
Mareeba Rock WallabyPetrogale mareeba
Red-legged PademelonThylogale stigmatica
Red-necked PademelonThylogale thetis
Swamp WallabyWallabia bicolor
Cuscuses and Brushtail Possums (Phalangeridae)
Common (Common) Brushtail PossumTrichosurus vulpecula vulpecula
Common (Coppery) Brushtail PossumTrichosurus vulpecula johnstonii
Short-eared Brushtail PossumTrichosurus caninus
Gliders, Trioks, and Allies (Petauridae)
Striped PossumDactylopsila trivirgata
Sugar GliderPetaurus breviceps
Yellow-bellied GliderPetaurus australis
Ringtail Possums (Pseudocheiridae)
Greater GliderPetauroides volans
Common Ringtail PossumPseudocheirus peregrinus
Green Ringtail PossumPseudochirops archeri
Koalas (Phascolarctidae)
KoalaPhascolarctos cinereus
Hares and Rabbits (Leporidae)
European HareLepus europaeus
European RabbitOryctolagus cuniculus
Platypuses (Ornithorhynchidae)
PlatypusOrnithorhynchus anatinus
Bandicoots (Peramelidae)
Long-nosed BandicootPerameles nasuta
Old World Mice and Rats (Muridae)
White-tailed Giant RatUromys caudimaculatus
Australian Swamp RatRattus letreolus
Bush RatRattus fuscipes
House (Black) RatRattus rattus
House MouseMus musculus
Suids (Suidae)
Wild Boar (Feral Pig)Sus scrofa

Reptile List

Common NameScientific Name
Crocodiles (Crocodylidae)
Saltwater CrocodileCrocodylus porosus
Monitor Lizards (Varanidae)
(Gould’s) Sand GoannaVaranus gouldii
Australian Leaf-tailed, Thick-tailed, and Knob-tailed Geckos (Carphodactylidae)
Northern Leaf-tail GeckoSaltuarius cornutus
Geckos (Gekkonidae)
Common House GeckoHemidactylus frenatus
Dragons (Agamidae)
Boyd’s Forest DragonLophosaurus boydii
Mallee DragonCtenophorus fordi
Eastern Bearded DragonPogona barbata
Lined Earless DragonTympanocryptis lineata
Skinks (Scincidae)
Pale-rumped CtenotusCtenotus regius
Robust CtenotusCtenotus robustus
(Eastern)Tree SkinkEgernia striolata
Shingleback LizardTiliqua rugosa
Red-throated Rainbow-skinkCarlia rubrigularis
Land MulletBellatorias major
Legless Geckos (Pygopodidae)
Marble-faced DelmaDelma australis
Colubrid Snakes (Colubridae)
Green Tree SnakeDendrelaphis punctulatus
Elapid Snakes (Elapidae)
Eastern Brown SnakePseudonaja textilis
Mainland Island Snake (Tiger Snake)Notechis scutatus
Pythons (Pythonidae)
Amethystine (Australian Scrub) PythonMorelia amethistina
Freshwater Turtles (Cheluidae)
Macquarie (Murray) TurtleEmydura macquarii macquarii
Austro-American Side-necked Turtles (Chelidae)
Eastern Saw-shelled TurtleMyuchelys latisternum
Northern Snake-necked TurtleChelodina oblonga
Typical Sea Turtles (Cheloniidae)
Loggerhead TurtleCaretta caretta

Notable Other Taxa List

Common NameScientific Name
Australasian Tree Frogs (Pelodryadidae)
Brown Tree FrogLitoria ewingii
Green and Gold FrogLitoria raniformis
True Toads (Bufonidae) 
Cane ToadRhinella marina
Swallowtails and Parnassians (Papilionidae)
Cairns BirdwingOrnithoptera euphorion
Orchard SwallowtailPapilio Aegeus
Lime SwallowtailPapilio demoleus
Brush-footed Butterflies (Nymphalidae)
MonarchDanaus plexippus
Australian Painted LadyVanessa kershawi
Common BrownHeteronympha merope
Great EggflyHypolimnas bolina
Yellow-eyed PlaneNeptis praslini
Whites, Yellows, and Sulphurs (Pieridae)
Caper WhiteBelonis java
Small WhitePieris rapae
Imperial JezebelDelias harpalyce
Spotted JezebelDelias aganippe
Common Grass YellowEurema hecabe
Gossamer-winged Butterflies (Lycaenidae)
Saltbush BlueTheclinesthes serpentata
Common Imperial BlueJalmenus evagoras
Skimmers (Libellulidae)
Blue SkimmerOrthetrum caledonicum
Common GliderTramea loewii
Painted GrasshawkNeurothemis stigmatizans
Graphic FluttererRhyothemis graphiptera
Darners (Aeshnidae)
Australian EmperorAnax papuensis
Spreadwings and Allies (Lestidae)
Wandering RingtailAustrolestes leda
Emerald Dragonflies (Corduliidae)
Tau EmeraldHemicordulia tau
Bluestreaks and Rockmasters (Lestoideidae)
Tropical RockmasterDiphlebia euphoeoides
Ants (Formicidae)
Asian Weaver (Green) AntOecophylla smaragdina
Cockles (Cardiidae)
Small Giant ClamTridacna maxima
Orchids (Orchidaceae)
Large Flying Duck OrchidCaleana major
Hornet (Tiger) OrchidDiuris sulphurea
Eastern Mantis OrchidCaladenia tentaculate
Spotted Sun-OrchidThelymitra ixioides
Red Beard OrchidCalochilus paludosus
Purple Beard OrchidCalochilus robertsonii
Thin Pencil OrchidDendrobium teretifolium
Bladderworts (Lentibulariaceae)
Fairy ApronsUtricularia dichotoma


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