Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Where to go birdwatching in the Margaret River region

Waking up to the cheerful singing and chirping of our feathered friends makes for a charming start to your day.

The South-West is a biodiverse hotspot, with more than 350 species of birds native to the region and a dozen or so species endemic to the area. These include the famous Carnaby’s black cockatoo, the Western Corella and the Red-winged fairy-wren. Of course, you can also catch a glimpse of clever crows, friendly magpies and pink and grey galahs whom you will find in noisy flocks, playing and generally having the time of their lives.

Carnaby’s black cockatoo

Where to go birdwatching in the South-West

Rotary Park, Margaret River

A scenic shaded forest with the river flowing through attracts plenty of wildlife. Look out for Splendid and Red-winged Fairy-wren, White-breasted Robin, as well as Western Rosella and the Red-capped Parrot. Tread carefully and scan the ground and shrub undergrowth for birds minding their own business. Most of these species can be found at beautiful Boranup Forest, too.

Ludlow Tuart Forest

This majestic forest near Busselton is the perfect spot to snoop on birds. Take a walk to see Collared Sparrowhawk, Spotted Pardalote and Whistling Kite. And don’t just look into the sky – make sure you peek into tree trunks, on lower branches, and the forest floor. This is an easy location to visit as it is right off Bussell Highway.

Did you know? Birdwatching is called ‘birding’ and birdwatchers are ‘birders’.

Photo by Peter Taylor, Birding South West

Augusta and Hamelin Bay

These southern areas are home to a large variety of birds, including water- and sand-loving varieties. Good spots include the Hardy Inlet and Blackwood River in Augusta and the lake near the caravan park in Hamelin Bay. You might be able to catch a glimpse of Eastern Reef Egrets, Caspian Terns and Hooded Plovers. At the beach, birds may be found on the sand, but look onto open water and banks, exposed rocks and dunes. Also scan any beach seaweed lying around.

Cape Naturaliste

Cape Naturaliste near Yallingup and Dunsborough is home to Southern Emu-wren, Red-eared Firetail and Splendid Fairy-wrens. Walk around the lighthouse and the Cape Naturaliste track car park to increase your birding chances. Many varieties of Petrels can be seen out on the rocks.

Cape Leeuwin

Further south, near Augusta, is Cape Leeuwin. You’re very likely to see lots of resident Rock Parrots – particularly around the lighthouse, the waterwheel and the café. This is also a great place to spend some time locating seabirds such as Black-browed Albatross, Shy Albatross and Yellow-nosed Albatross.

General birdwatching tips

BirdLife Australia has some great tips for birdwatching.

  • Talk in your normal voice. Don’t shout or This may seem counterintuitive but quiet noises may disturb them and some species use similar sounds to alarm others.
  • Plan your outing for early morning because birds are more active then.
  • Avoid very hot days. However, if this is your only option go early in the day or late in the afternoon.
  • Avoid windy days.
  • Don’t wear bright or rustling clothing.
  • Make your way around in small groups rather than large ones.

To get fully immersed in the birding experience, you might like to join a birdwatching tour. There are several operators in the region who offer half- and full-day tours. Try Birding South West and Triptide for more information.

Get in touch with our friendly bookings team on (08) 9750 5444 or bookings@privateproperties.com.au to find out what homes will make your birding adventure an amazing one. Browse our list of beautiful properties for your next escape in the region.

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