Daintree, Northern Tablelands and Mt: Lewis
Birding north of the Daintree River is mainly confined to the lowlands.
Lowland rainforest, melaleuca swamp, riparian/riverine forest, grass/pastureland, mangroves, estuarine and the inter-tidal zone. The riparian and mangrove forests along the Daintree River are best accessed by boat and provide an opportunity for some excellent birding.
Species often encountered include not only the Great-billed Heron, Striated Heron, Black Bittern (in season), Papuan Frogmouth, Little, Azure, Forest and Sacred Kingfishers, Shining Flycatcher, Mangrove Robin, Large-billed Gerygone, Yellow-bellied (Olive-backed) Sunbird, White-breasted Sea-eagle, Osprey, Brahminy Kite and Pacific Baza.
The lowland rainforests of the region are habitat for Buff-breasted Paradise-kingfisher,Yellow Oriole, Double-eyed Fig-parrot, Black Butcherbird and Suberb. Furthermore, Rose-crowned and Wompoo Fruit-doves , White-eared Monarch, Lovely Fairy-wren and in season Metallic Starling, Channel-billed Cuckoo, Koel and Pied Imperial Pigeons and many other species. Red-necked Crake, Bushen and Noisy Pitta are also present at certain times of the year, but are more often heard than seen….!
The melaleuca swamps and lagoons often attract Magpie Geese, Royal Spoonbills, egrets, ibis, herons as well as the Black-necked Stork. There is also a resident population of the handsome Radjah Shelduck.
In the past, large areas of rainforest were cleared in the Daintree for cattle grazing. This lush grassland now provides habitat for many species. Species include Tawny Grassbird, Golden-headed Cisticola, Australian Pipit, the occassional Brown Songlark, Rainbow Bee-eater, White-breasted Wood-swallow, Fairy and Tree Martins and large flocks of Cattle Egrets.