BirdLife Northern Queensland encompasses western and Far North Queensland, the Gulf of Carpentaria, Cape York and Torres Strait. Our activities include monitoring Key Biodiversity Areas, education and recreational birdwatching.
We cater for all levels of expertise, from beginner to professional, and emphasise fun as well as important conservation outcomes. Our region encompasses some of the best birdwatching locations in Australia, offering a stunning variety of species to be seen. The birds of the region include rainforest specialists, such as the Southern Cassowary and Golden Bowerbird, dry area specialists, including the elusive various grasswrens, finches, migratory birds from New Guinea and beyond, shorebirds and dry tropical savannah specialists. Some other endemic birds in the region are the Atherton Scrubwren, Fernwren, Palm Cockatoo, Golden-shouldered Parrot, Yellow Honeyeater and the stunning Buff-breasted Paradise-Kingfisher. In all, our region boasts 630 species.
BirdLife Northern Queensland regularly holds meetings with guest speakers for its members, and we also conduct occasional workshops. We also hold occasional camping trips to outstanding birding destinations over long weekends.
We are involved in a number of grasswren monitoring projects. In 2011, surveys were conducted by members under contract to the Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) to assess the population of Carpentarian Grasswrens in Boodjamulla (Lawn Hill) National Park. More work is planned (depending on funding).
With over 20 years of successful Crane Counts throughout North Queensland, the BirdLife Northern Queensland annual Crane Count now concentrates on Sarus Cranes and Brolgas in the Atherton Tablelands Key Biodiversity Area. Enthusiastic volunteers count Sarus Cranes as they fly into their night roosts on the Atherton Tableland.
In the 1980s, John Winter organised counters from Magnetic Island north to Port Douglas to count (or estimate the number of) Torresian Imperial Pigeons in their areas. There are many Torresian Imperial Pigeons nesting on the Barnard Islands (between Mission Beach and Mourilyan), about which very little is known.
We monitor the persistence of bowers throughout the Wet Tropics. It is assumed that as global warming becomes an issue for these birds, the bowers at lowest altitudes will be the first to disappear.