Birding In The Areas From Mareeba To Mt Carbine and around Kingfisher Park Birdwatchers Lodge
Distances are from Kingfisher Park Birdwatchers Lodge
The descriptions will give you an idea of what type of species you might expect to see at the locations and any special requirement to visit. More information will be available upon your arrival.
Mt. Lewis – 12.5 km
The Mt. Lewis Road is 1.5km from the Lodge and winds its way up to 950m where the best birding location is on the mountain. The road is only sealed for 1 km before changing to gravel for the remaining 10 km, this section can become impassable after heavy rain, especially due to fallen trees, so you need to check the road conditions before you attempt to traverse it. The road has been well graded over the last few years so a 2WD vehicle will generally be fine to take up the mountain. This is the place to look for the Blue-faced Parrot-Finch between November and April, also other upland rainforest species such as Chowchilla. Golden and Tooth-billed Bowerbird, Atherton Scrubwren and Mountain Thornbill. The main birdwatching area of Mt. Lewis forms part of the Australian Wildlife Conservancy's property Brooklyn Wildlife Sanctuary.
Abattoir Swamp – 6.1 km
Here a bird hide is accessed by a newly refurbished boardwalk, but unfortunately the open water has been overrun by Olive Hymenachne grass. However the woodland area around the car park is often productive (look for Northern Fantail here) and when the paperbark trees are flowering large numbers of lorikeets and honeyeaters are attracted to the area. Can be good for Spotless and White-browed Crake.
Maryfarms – 30.4 km
This is a reliable site for Australian Bustard viewed from the East or West Mary Roads.
Mt.Carbine – 38.9 km
The Mt. Carbine dam is closed due to mining activity in the area and no longer has access. Birding in the area can be done in the surrounding woodland, especially along the road to the cemetery, which is on the left north of the township. It is signposted.
Luster & Station Creeks – 21.4 km & 25.3 km
Both these creeks are on the Australian Wildlife Conservancy's property Brooklyn Wildlife Sanctuary. Good woodland habitat.
Mount Molloy – 11.3 km
Famous for it's number of Great Bowerbirds and bowers also Red-winged Parrot, Pale-headed Rosella and Squatter Pigeon.
Lake Mitchell – 25.2 km
Drive out onto the causeway, at the southern end of the lake, through a gate. Waterbirds are usually in abundance but are subjected to varying conditions, which sometimes dry the lake back to a fraction of its potential size or cause it to flood when generally waterbirds are at their lowest numbers.
Big Mitchell Creek - 27.9 km
White-browed Robin can usually be found here as well as other dry country species.
Mareeba Wetlands – 49.9 km
Extensive wetland and woodland habitat. A fee applies if you want to walk the extensive woodlands, check the Mareeba Wetlands web site for daily opening hours and times of the year when they are open.
Mowbray National Park
Small walking track through rainforest, which can turn up some of the more difficult rainforest species, including fruit-doves and the occassional Southern Cassowary.
An alternative road from Julatten to Mount Molloy passes through Wetherby Station which is open woodland cattle country with a good variety of bushbirds. The road passes a small wetland near the homestead and usually this has many waterbirds. This road can be impassable after rains.
Approximate Driving Times to Mossman Gorge, Daintree Village, Cape Tribulation, Port Douglas, Atherton and Cairns.
Mossman Gorge is about 35 mins
Can get crowded but the walk from the car park through the rainforest is worthwhile for a good selection of rainforest birds. Best early morning-late afternoon
Daintree Village is 55 mins
Many of the specialised birding Daintree River cruise boats start here.
Cape Tribulation - 1hr 30 mins
An interesting lowland rainforest area with several walks through the rainforest and a possibility of Southern Cassowary.
Port Douglas - 35 mins
Reef trips depart from here.
Atherton - 1 hour
Central to the many different habitats on the Atherton Tableland.
Cairns 1hr 30 mins
The time is about the same whether you go via Mareeba on the inland route or along the coast.
For more information on the local area and birdwatching sites Jo Wieneke's book "Where to Watch Birds in North-east Queensland" is recommended. Lloyd Nielsen's "Birding Australia" book covers Australia, including North-east Queensland and is a complete directory of Australian birding that is constantly updated. Both books are available in our shop at the Lodge or direct from Lloyd at Birding Australia.
Information brochures to local birding sites are available for download at the BirdLife Northern Queensland web site. Click on Brochures in the top navigation bar