Australia’s Best Birding Sites

We’ve gather Australia’s best birding sites for all you birding fanatics

From the good-humoured Kookaburra and the iconic emu to the rare Gouldian Finch and the dazzling orange-bellied parrot – Australia is truly a bird watcher’s paradise. Whether you are a weekend warrior or a die-hard twitcher, you’ll definitely enjoy watching Australia’s 800 amazing, native bird species.

One of our tourisms alliances – birding tours have given a list of their most popular selling birding tour destinations around Australia.

Grab your cameras and binoculars, because here are the 5 best twitching sites to spy some beautiful and rare birdlife.

1. Dandenong Ranges, Victoria

The Dandenong Ranges – just over 40 kilometres from Melbourne’s CBD – offer a wide range of beautiful native birds. The best time to visit this high rainfall region is during spring or winter when the rain is infrequent and the cold climate birds are out. Popular picnic spots like Kallista and Sherbrooke are great bird watching places.

Throughout the dense eucalyptus trees, damp gullies and ferns; live bush rodents and arboreal marsupials hunted down by the mysterious powerful owl. Superb lyrebird and passerine are other endemic species found in this habitat. Look out for the Eastern Spinebill, Yellow-tailed Black-cockatoo and Eastern Yellow Robin.

2. Atherton Tablelands, Queensland

Located west of Cairns, the Atherton Tablelands is definitely a must-visit bird location. The dense rainforest is home to strikingly beautiful Australian birds and a perfect area to see the male bowerbirds as they charm their female counterparts during the spring and summer.

Around 11 endemic bird species and several rare species can be seen feeding, playing and mating on the extensive volcanic crater lakes. Look out for seed-eating birds like the Blue- faced Parrot, as well as the Sooty Owl, Victoria’s Riflebird and Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher.

3. MacDonnell Ranges, Northern Territory

The East West MacDonnell Ranges lie near Alice Springs. This desert region is well worth a visit. The ranges are scenic, interesting and geologically complex, and support a diverse range of plant communities and bird habitats.

You can easily locate White-backed Swallows around the gorges and watercourses. In the acacias, you’ll see lots of Mistletoe birds and White-plumed Honeyeaters. Roaming the skies are apex predators including Brown Falcons and Nankeen Kestrels. Look out for Hooded Robins, Willie Wagtails, Pied Butcherbirds and Magpies.

4. Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve, Northern Territory

These wetlands, located in Darwin’s rural area, are home to around 230 bird species. Predominantly billabong, monsoon forest and wetland, this reserve is home to Australia’s only stork, the Jabiru.

With seasonal changes and many habitats on offer, chances are, you’ll see a wide range of species, including the endangered Gouldian Finch and common locals like the Blue-winged Kookaburra. Look out for the Red-backed Kingfisher and Black-necked Stork.

5. Christmas Island, Western Australia

Christmas Island’s limestone cliffs and patches of rainforest are highly populated with wanderers and seabirds. The island, located 2600 kilometres northwest of Perth, is also home to millions of migratory red crabs that attract large numbers of hungry birds.

Kept in isolation and seclusion, birds on this island are surprisingly tame and are known to perch on tourists’ shoulders. Look out for Abbott’s Booby, Golden Bosunbird, Goshawk and Imperial Pigeon.

Australia is never short of bird spectacle. From the rainforests and wetlands to deserts and offshore islands, those are some of the places to get a birding fix.

For more on Australian Wildlife Journeys visit their website.