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Ultimate Birding Australia

Suggested months: January, February, March, April, November, December.

A truly epic birdwatching adventure awaits you on this itinerary covering a diverse array of habitats. Commencing just outside of Melbourne, you will gain exclusive access to one of Australia's top birding locations at the Western Treatment Plant, being especially rich in waders, waterfowl and raptors. Next stop is the pristine wilderness of Tasmania, where you will have the opportunity to spot eleven of Tasmania's endemic species with a visit to Mt Field National Park.

You will then discover birds across the Southern Eyre Peninsula, known for its coastal dune shrublands, mallee woodlands and clifftops, providing access to abundant waders, seabirds, raptors, bushbirds and parrots. To round out the journey, you will visit one of the best birdwatching sites on the planet; World Heritage Listed Far North Queensland, the world's oldest continually surviving rainforest and where the world’s songbirds emerged. With more than 450 Avian Species recorded (more than half of Australia's total bird count), including 12 endemics, it is truly a birdwatcher's paradise.

  • Visiting the RAMSAR listed Western Treatment Plant home to an incredible 280 species
  • Trip to Mount Field National Park, home to 11 out of the 12 Tasmanian endemic species
  • A trip to the beautiful coastlines of the Eyre Peninsula, to spot some of the 270 species of birds recorded including the Western Whipbird, Southern Emu-wren, Port Lincoln Parrot and Osprey
  • World Heritage listed Far North Queensland with 450 species including the Buff-breasted Kingfisher, Victoria's Riflebird (Australia's only bird of paradise), kingfishers, Red-backed Fairywren and the Southern Cassowary.

Minimum Suggested Trip: 16 days - 4 days Melbourne, 4 days Tasmania, 4 days Eyre Peninsula, 4 days Far North Queensland/Cairns

Price Guideline: Typically, the budget for small group touring packages across Australia excluding flights is:
5-star: AUD $500 - $1,400+ per person per day (USD $350-$1,000+)
4-star: Minimum AUD $400 per person per day (USD $300)
3-star: Minimum AUD $250 per person per day (USD $170)

Cairns Eyre Peninsula Tasmania You Yangs & Great Ocean Road
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Type: Private Charter

Duration: 2 days/1 night - You Yangs & Western Plains

Logistics: Fly into Melbourne (MEL)

Accommodation:
Various options available in Melbourne City Centre

Tawny Frogmouths & Sandpipers: 2 day Birding Tour

Over two days, this birding tour showcases the rich birdlife of the Australian bush and coastal wetlands, including kookaburras, frogmouths, honeyeaters and cockatoos; ducks, waders and endemic geese. Visiting the beautiful You Yangs Regional park, best known for its beautiful granite ridges, grasslands and low woodlands, guests will have the opportunity to spot more than 200 bird species such as White-naped, White-plumed, New Holland and Brown-headed honeyeaters, Laughing Kookaburras, White-winged Choughs, Eastern Yellow Robins, as well as wild  Eastern Grey Kangaroos and Koalas.

The second day focuses Western Treatment Plant, a RAMSAR listed Wetland of International Importance, regarded as one of Australia's top birding locations. It is a mosaic of lagoons, saltmarshes, waterways, swamps and both rocky and sandy shoreline. With this habitat diversity the region has an incredible bird list of over 280 species, being especially rich in waders, waterfowl and raptors.

About Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours: Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours was founded by Roger Smith and Janine Duffy in 1993, with the vision to bring people and wildlife together for mutual benefit. The award-winning team believes that observing and connecting with wildlife is a key element in enriching the lives for people of all backgrounds; whether this interaction is for pleasure, new experiences and learning, for connection to the land or the basic needs for humans to breathe clean air and drink clean water via healthy ecosystems.

When guests travel with Echidna Walkabout Nature Tours, part of the trip involves travellers contributing to a project that actively helps wildlife.

Seasonal highlights

Summer: Dec-Feb - Birds

Rainbow Bee-eaters can be found nesting in river banks, Sulphur-crested Cockatoos, Little Corellas, Galahs, Red-rumped Parrots, Crimson Rosellas, Eastern Rosellas, Gang-gang Cockatoos, Grey Goshawks, Nankeen Kestrels, Swamp Harriers, White-winged Choughs, Singing, New Holland & White-plumed Honeyeaters, Common Bronzewings.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

Tawny Frogmouths roosting, Short-tailed Shearwater migration, Honeyeaters abundant including Red and Little Wattlebirds, Eastern Spinebills, New Holland, Yellow-faced, Tawny-crowned and White-plumed Honeyaters, Black-chinned, White-naped , Spiny Cheeked, Yellow-tufted, Fuscous and Singing Honeyeaters possible, Rainbow, Musk and Purple-crowned Lorikeets.

Summer: Dec-Feb - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Koalas most active in the summer breeding season, with males singing during the day and night, Eastern Grey Kangaroos mating, Swamp Wallabies, Red-necked Wallabies.

Autumn: Mar-May - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Eastern Grey Kangaroo joeys discover the world outside, learn to hop, play and graze, Swamp Wallabies, Red-necked Wallabies, Koalas, Common Brushtail Possums at dusk and early evening.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Baby Koalas (joeys) come out of the pouch for the first time and will ride on their mother’s back late Spring, Common Brushtail and Common Ringtail Possums at dusk, Eastern Grey Kangaroos, Swamp Wallabies, Red-necked Wallabies.

More info

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Type: Private Charter

Duration: Day Tour - Tasmania

Logistics: Take a 1 hour 15 minute flight to Hobart (HBA)

Accommodation:
Various options available in Hobart

1 Day Birdwatching Mt Field National Park

Mount Field National Park is the oldest in Tasmania and one of the most diverse. Guests will have the opportunity to spot 11 out of the 12 Tasmanian endemic species including the Tasmanian Native Hen, Scrubtit, Yellow Wattlebird, Black Currawong and Tasmanian Thornbill across this park featuring amazing plant diversity; from lush Eucalyptus temperate rainforest to alpine moorland. These forests date back over 60 million years, when Australia was attached to Antarctica, Africa, South America and New Zealand as part of the Gondwana supercontinent.

Other highlights include the Pandani Grove walk around Lake Dobson, the three-tier Russell Falls and the vivid Autumn colours of Fagus tree, Australia's only cold climate, deciduous tree. Encounters with Tasmanian Pademelons, Bennett's Wallabies and Platypus are regular delights for visitors, with occasional sightings of the gorgeous Pink Robin.

About Premier Travel Tasmania: Premier Travel Tasmania has been offering refined encounters with nature across the ‘island state’ for over 20 years. The company’s promise to share the diverse flora & fauna, pristine wilderness, rich heritage, gourmet food & wine and local characters, inextricably connects guests to what is quintessentially Tasmania.  At the core of the company’s ethos is to preserve Tasmania’s endemic wildlife and their natural habitats, with major contributions provided towards saving the Tasmania Devil from habitat loss and disease.

Seasonal highlights

Summer: Dec-Feb - Birds

Little Penguins breed, Kelp, Pacific & Silver Gulls, Pied Oystercatchers, Hooded Dotterels, Crested Terns & Fairy Terns nest. Migratory waders include Eastern Curlews, Curlew Sandpipers, Ruddy Turnstones, Red-necked Stints, Common Greenshanks. Black Currawongs, Green Rosellas, Olive Whistlers, Pink Robins, Grey Goshawks, Australian Shelducks, Chestnut Teals, Australasian Shovellers, Great Crested Grebes.

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Summer migrants arrive including Welcome Swallows, Tree Martins, Dusky Woodswallows, Striated Pardalotes, Grey Fantails and Swift Parrots. Short-tailed Shearwaters leave the Tasmanian coast on their migration along with other migratory waders such as, Ruddy Turnstones, Red-necked Stints, Common Greenshanks and Eastern Curlews. Beautiful Firetails and Green Rosellas a highlight.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

Fan-tailed, Pallid and Shining Bronze Cuckoos migrate to breed along with Welcome Swallows, Tree Martins, Dusky Woodswallows, Striated Pardalotes, Grey Fantails and Silvereyes and Swift Parrots, 18 million Short-tailed Shearwaters arrive. Little Penguins breed along with Red-capped Plovers, Hooded Dotterels, Pied & Sooty Oystercatchers, Cormorants, Masked & Banded Lapwings and a variety of Gulls and Terns.

Summer: Dec-Feb - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Peak time to see young carnivorous marsupials including Tasmanian Devils, Spotted-tailed and Eastern Quolls and occasionally Platypus. Eastern-barred Bandicoots, Southern-brown Bandicoots, Long-nosed Potoroos, Forester Kangaroos, Bennett’s Wallabies, Tasmanian Pademelons and Tasmanian Bettongs.

Autumn: Mar-May - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Forester Kangaroos, Bennett’s Wallabies, Tasmanian Pademelons, Tasmanian Bettongs and Long-nosed Potoroos have joeys that are weaned off at this time. Tasmanian Devils breed in March, Common Wombats, Short-beaked Echidnas.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Land Mammals & Marsupials

Spring is the peak season for seeing a number of Tasmania’s baby marsupials including Forester Kangaroos, Bennett’s Wallabies, Tasmanian Pademelons, Common Brushtail and Ringtail Possums. Long-nosed Potoroos, Tasmanian Bettongs and Tasmanian Devils also sighted.

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Type: Private Charter,Shared

Duration: 3 days/2 nights

Logistics: Fly to Adelaide (ADL) direct or via Melbourne. Option to overnight in Adelaide or connect to a 50 minute flight to Port Lincoln (PLO)

Included Accommodations:
Port Lincoln Hotel (4 star) or
South Point Private Beach House (Luxury)

Southern Eyre Peninsula Birdwatching

Home to 270 species of birds and 1900 native plant species, this tour across the Southern Eyre Peninsula traverses coastal dune shrublands, mallee woodlands, sandflats, saltmarsh, subcoastal and clifftops. There are opportunities to observe waders and seabirds including Little Pied and Black Cormorants, Grey and Chestnut Teal Ducks, Pink Eared Ducks, Musk Ducks, Osprey, Sooty & Pied Oyster Catchers, Black Winged Stilts, Caspian Terns and Common Greenshanks.

At Mikkara Station, wild Koalas are plentiful, complemented by numerous bushbirds including the Port Lincoln Parrots, Golden Whistlers, Blue-breasted Fairy-wrens, Western Yellow Robins, White-browed Babblers, honeyeaters and Emus. Coastal walks provide spectacular backdrops to spot Rock Parrots, nesting Osprey and White Bellied Sea-Eagles and numerous raptors including Kites and Harriers. At Coffin Bay, visitors will search for the endangered Southern Emu-wren.

About Australian Coastal Safaris: Australian Coastal Safaris started operations in 2005 when David Doudle, a fourth-generation local farmer, started showcasing many of the activities that he and his family grew up doing across the Eyre Peninsula’s stunning landscapes; from amazing deserted beaches, pristine colours of the ocean, the abundance of fresh seafood, the friendliness of the local people, the vast open spaces and the interaction with native wildlife.

The team is very emotional about preserving the region and are ambassadors in keeping the environments pure, pristine and sparsely populated, to ensure that guests are able to enjoy the unique experiences and habitats well into the future.

Seasonal highlights

Summer: Dec-Feb - Birds

Nesting season for Pied Oystercatchers, Hooded Dotterels, Red-capped Plovers. Common Greenshanks are migratory visitors. Big Swamp provides sanctuary for Black Swans, Grey Teal Ducks, Chestnut Teal Ducks, Pink Eared Ducks, Musk Ducks and Black Winged Stilts. Port Lincoln (Australian Ringneck) Parrots, Common Bronzewings, Striated Pardalotes, Spiney-Cheeked Honeyeaters and White-Browed Scrubwrens abundant. Pallid Cuckoos migrate to the area.

Autumn: Mar-May - Birds

Osprey and White Bellied Sea-Eagles, Black-shouldered Kites, Swamp Harriers, Purple-Gaped Honeyeaters, Striated Pardalotes, Spiney-Cheeked Honeyeaters, Dusky Woodswallows, Western Yellow Robins, Blue-breasted Fairy-wrens, and White-Browed Scrubwrens, Port Lincoln (Australian Ringneck) Parrots, Black-Faced Cuckoo-shrikes, Australian Magpies, Red Wattlebirds and Golden Whistlers.

Spring: Sep-Nov - Birds

White-bellied Sea Eagles and Osprey nesting and fledging, Striated Pardalotes, Western Yellow Robins, Golden Whistlers, Superb Blue Wrens, White-Browed Babblers, Red Wattlebirds, Black-faced Cuckoo Shrikes, New Holland Honeyeaters, Brown-Headed Honey Eaters along with Port Lincoln and Rock Parrots, Eastern Reef Egrets, Australiasian Shovelers, Cape Barren Geese.

 

More info

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Type: Private Charter

Duration: 3 days/ 2 nights (optional day extension)

Logistics: Fly to Adelaide (ADL) and connect to a 3 hour flight to Cairns (CNS)

Accommodations Included

Far North Queensland: 3 day Birding Tour

The Wet Tropics stretch from Townsville to Cooktown, encompassing approximately 9000sq. km of rainforest interspersed with farmland, rivers and tropical savannah, not to mention coastline and coral cays. Such an array of habitats explains the region’s high diversity of flora and fauna.

This World Heritage Listed area is the world's oldest continually surviving rainforest and where the world’s songbirds emerged. With more than 450 Avian Species recorded (more than half of Australia's total bird count), including 12 Endemics, it’s Australia’s twitching mecca; and you don’t have to venture far from Cairns to enjoy a rich bird watching experience in a variety of environments.

The region is famous being home to bowerbirds, kingfishers, riflebirds, fruit doves and the endangered Southern Cassowary.  The FNQ Nature Tours team along with local birding experts, bring the vast variety of birding hotspots in Far North Queensland to life with this exceptional multi-day birding experience.

About FNQ Nature Tours: After ten years of guiding nature and wildlife safaris in Northern Australia, James Boettcher established FNQ Nature Tours in 2015, with a firm belief that tourism is the key to the protection and conservation of this World Heritage area. The company offers tours designed for nature minded travellers desiring a personal, educational and interactive guided experience, whilst sharing the necessity of protecting the natural wonders and biodiversities of this world famous region.

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