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Southern Tablelands Birdwatching # 1

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A full guided day tour that visits a variety of different habitats in the Highlands above Cairns.  The actual itinerary will vary depending on weather, time of year, bird movements and the special requests of clients. This tour concentrates on the mid altitude southern Tablelands sites.

Tour Details

A full guided day tour that visits a variety of different habitats in the Highlands above Cairns.  The actual itinerary will vary depending on weather, time of year, bird movements and the special requests of clients. This tour concentrates on the mid altitude southern Tablelands sites.

Cost

AU$310.00 per person (minimum 2 people)

Pick up time

As arranged at time of booking

Drop off time

As arranged at time of booking

Price Includes

  • Tour Guide
  • Entrance Fees
  • Lunch
  • Hotel Pickup & drop off
  • Transport in comfortable 4WD air-conditioned vehicle

Price Excludes

  • Drinks and snacks

Complementaries

  • Complimentary Water
What to Expect

A day spent birding the mid level sites of the Southern Tablelands with an experienced bird guide. Depending on client “wish list” there are a number of sites that can be visited. A tour for someone just out for a good days birding will be different than one for someone with a hit list. To do full justice to the area at least 2 days need to be set aside. 

We suggest you bring with you:

  • comfortable covered walking shoes - while there are no major hikes during this tour there will be some walking on potentially rough paths
  • Lightweight long-sleeved shirt and long trousers- some rainforest plants can be rather scratchy
  • Lightweight raingear
  • Jumper or sweatshirt for higher altitudes particularly in winter
  • Hat
  • Sunblock
  • Insect repellent
  • Camera and binoculars
Sample Itinerary

Pick up from accommodation & Cassowary House

After being picked up from your accommodation you will make your way up the Range. Your first stop is likely to be Cassowary House in the hope of coinciding with a Cassowary which visit the property most days. Victoria’s Riflebird, Spotted Catbird, Black Butcherbird, Emerald Ground Dove and a variety of honeyeaters including the locally endemic Macleay’s are amongst the birds that come to feed near the house in the morning. A walk along the driveway and Black Mountain Road can yield 4 species of monarch, 3 species of fruit dove, boatbills, Gerygones, perhaps Chowchilla and if you are lucky Red-necked Crake and much more.

Mareeba, dry country & Atherton

From Cassowary House you will head to the dry country around Mareeba where the impressive Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, Kookaburras, Pheasant Coucals, Red-winged Parrots, Pale-headed Rosellas, Weebills, Squatter Pigeon and Tawny Frogmouth are all possibilities along with Red backed Fairywrens, babblers and a variety of finches. As you head towards Atherton if it is winter, stately Cranes can often be seen in the cut cane fields beside the road. During the summer the cane grows tall and most of the Sarus cranes fly to the Gulf of Carpentaria to breed.

Beyond Atherton

Beyond Atherton you may visit Hasties Swamp – a very busy wetland area where thousands of Plumed and Wandering Whistling Ducks as well as vast flocks of Magpie Geese can be seen. Pink-billed Duck, Black Swan, Hardhead, Green and Cotton Pigmy Geese and Freckled Duck are some of the other species that can be seen. Both Yellow-billed and Royal Spoonbill have been recorded plus a variety of egrets, crakes and rails. Raptors are common overhead including Wedge-tailed Eagle, Australian Kestrel, Brown Falcon, Brahminy Kite.

Other midlevel sites

Other midlevel Tablelands sites can include;
• The spectacular Curtain Fig which is great for monarchs, Bowers Shrike-Thrush, Chowchilla, Lewin’s Honeyeater, Large-billed Scrubwren, Lesser Sooty Owl and more
• Lake Barrine for Tooth-billed Catbird, Australasian Grebe, Yellow-breasted Boatbill, Victoria’s Riflebird and more.
• The Cathedral Fig which has birds similar to those mentioned above.

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