Birdlife

Details of some of the commonly found birds at Bunya Mountains National Park

If you wish to identify a bird not listed here, please ask our National Park Rangers or browse The Complete Book of Australian Birds, which can be found at “Poppies on the Hill” coffee shop. There are over 121 species of birds recorded at Bunya Mountains.

Download a printable PDF guide

King Parrots and Crimson Rosellas have little fear of humans and see us as a food source.  They will land on your outstretched arms and head to let you know they are hungry. Wild bird mix is the best food (2nd to their natural diet) although they will pick out the sunflower seeds first.  A diet exclusively of sunflower seeds is not healthy for them.  In the wild they eats fruits & seeds, Only feed these birds on private lands.

King Parrots are red & green.  The males have scarlet heads and underparts (when they mature at about 2.5 years old).  Wings and back are green with a pale green stripe on their wing covers.  Females have green heads and underparts with a light green stripe on wing covers. Their lower belly and breast is scarlet.

Crimson Rosellas are blue & red.  Males and females are similarly coloured.  The only distinguishing difference is that the male is larger, with a larger beak and broader head.   Although these birds are traditionally seed and fruit eaters, they are happy to have a free hand out of wild bird mix from humans.

Bowerbirds The most commonly seen at Bunya Mountains are the Satin Bowerbird, Regent Bowerbird and the Green Catbird.  All build bowers to attract females. Once mating has occurred, the female leaves to raise her young on her own.  Male bowerbirds are very good at mimicking the sounds of other birds.

Satin Bowerbird The male is a deep blue with a white beak; the female and young males green/grey with speckled cream & grey underparts.   Young males have white beaks.  The male decorates his bower with blue objects.  Male bowerbirds are very good at mimicking the sounds of other birds.

Regent Bowerbird Bowers are more simple and hidden amongst ferns or vines.  The male is a brilliant yellow and black.  The female and immature males are dull brown with a black patch on hind-crown.  Underparts are cream except for black patch on throat.

Green Catbird Has a distinctive wailing territorial cry – rather like the sound of a baby crying.  They do not build a bower – rather they are monogamous with the pair living by themselves in the rainforest. They are mostly fruit eaters.  They are bright green with mottled green/grey underparts and bright red eyes.

Australian Magpie Males have a black face and head with hind-neck, black and rump white; females similar but hind-neck is flecked grey.  Young magpies have a distinctive cawing sound as they beg for food from adults during summer.  By autumn they can fend for themselves and are driven off to join floating non-territorial flocks.   Magpies are very bossy birds and will take on birds much larger than themselves and win.  They eat insects as well as fruit and seeds and spend most of the day walking around although they roost in trees at night.

Pied Currawongs are omnivorous scavengers that will hunt for food anywhere. These birds have black bodies with white patches on their underparts and tips of their tail.  They have yellow eyes.

Paradise Rifle Birds & Whip Birds – make distinctive sounds.

Eastern Whipbirds have a very distinctive whip-crack call which both males and females contribute to.  The male makes the distinctive whip crack sound while the female adds to the end of it with two or three loud chirrups.   They spend a great deal of time on the forest floor scratching through the leaf litter and fallen logs for juicy insects and their larvae.

Noisy Pitta spend most of their life on the ground.  They are brightly coloured, rarely seen except for a flash of bright colour darting through the rainforest.   They eat fruit, seeds and will scratch around for  juicy worms, snails and other insects.  Pittas love snails and will strike a snail against a favoured rock or piece of wood until the shell breaks and the juicy soft body can be eaten.  You can often see a pile of broken snail shells lying around this “anvil”.

Paradise Riflebird The male is an iridescent black and green with purple tinges.  The female a grey/red with mottled white/black underparts.  Both have a very distinctive long, curved beak.  The male has an elaborate courtship ritual to attract females.   These birds live in the upper branches of trees feeding on insects and their larvae and fruit.

Supurb FairyWren Out of the breeding season, both male and female are a brown/green colour.  Females have orange brown bills, feet and areas around the eyes.   Males have black bills, dark brown around the eyes and grey feet.  During the breeding season, the mature male has a sky blue crown & throat and ring around his nec.

If you want to observe birds, do so by standing quietly for around ½ hour to give the birds time to get used to your presence.  Best early in the morning.  Behind the National Park office is a great bird-watching place but there are many others.  Sitting quietly by a mountain stream or in the middle of the rainforest is also very rewarding.

Bird summary at Bunya Mountains National Park

Mound Birds
Australian Brush-Turkey

Sitellas
Varied Sitella

Quail
Brown Quail

Shrike-tits
Crested shrike-tit

Water Birds
White-faced heron
White-necked heron
Australian white ibis
Straw-necked ibis

Flycatchers, monarchs, magpie-larks
Black faced monarch
Spectacled monarch
Satin flycatcher
Restless flycatcher
Leaden flycatcher
Magpie-lark

Hawks, Eagles
Pacific baza
Black shouldered kite
Whistling kite
Brown goshawk
Grey goshawk
Collared sparrowhawk
Wedge-tailed eagle

Bee-eaters
Rainbow bee-eater

Kingfishers
Laughing Kookaburra
Forest Kingfisher
Sacred kingfisher

Falcons
Australian hobby
Peregrine falcon
Brown falcon
Nankeen kestrel

Treecreepers
White-throated tree-creeper

Pittas
Noisy Pitta

Button Quails
Black-breasted button-quail

Plovers
Masked lapwing

Pardalotes
Spotted pardalote
Striated pardalote

Pigeons, Doves
White-headed pigeon
Brown cuckoo-dove
Emerald ground-dove
Peaceful dove
Bar-shouldered dove
Wonga pigeon
Wompoo fruit-dove
Superb fruit –dove
Rose-crowned fruit-dove
Topknot pigeon

Fantails
Rufous fantail
Grey fantail
Willie wagtail

Whistlers, shrike-thrushes
Golden whistler
Rufous whistler
Grey shrike-thrush

Cockatoos
Red-tailed black cockatoo
Yellow-tailed black cockatoo
Galah
Sulphur-crested cockatoo
Cockatiel

Drongos
Spangled drongo

Orioles
Olive-backed oriole
Figbird

Parrots
Rainbow lorikeet
Scaly-breasted lorikeet
Australian king parrot
Red-winged parrot
Crimson rosella
Pale-headed rosella

Cuckoo-shrikes, Trillers
Black-faced cuckoo-shrike
Barred cuckoo-shrike
White bellied cuckoo shrike
Ground cuckoo shrike
Cicadabird
Varied triller

Cuckoos
Pallid cuckoo
Brush cuckoo
Fan-tailed cuckoo
Horsefield’s bronze-cuckoo
Shining bronze-cuckoo
Common koel
Channel-billed cuckoo

Coucals
Pheasant coucal

Butcherbirds, Currawongs
Grey butcherbird
Pied butcherbird
Australian magpie
Pied currawong

Quail Thrush
Eastern whipbird
Spotted quail-thrush
Logrunner

Hawk Owls
Powerful owl
Barking owl
Southern boobook

Birds of Paradise
Paradise Riflebird

Barn Owls
Sooty owl

Australian Frogmouths
Tawny frogmouth

Nightjars
White-throated nightjar

Owlet-nightjars
Australian owlet nightjar

Crows
Australian raven
Torresian crow

Mudnesters
White-winged chough
Apostlebird

Swifts
White –throated needletail

Fairy Wrens
Superb fairy-wren
Variegated fairy-wren
Red-backed fairy-wren

Bowerbirds
Green catbird
Regent bowerbird
Satin bowerbird
Spotted bowerbird

Scrubwrens
Yellow throated scrubwrens
White-browed scrubwren
Large-billed scrubwren
Speckled warbler

Old World Larks
Singing bushlark

Old World Pipits
Richard’s pipit

Weebill, gerygones & thornbills
Weebill
Brown gerygone
White-throated gerygone
Brown thornbill
Buff-rumped thornbill
Yellow thornbill
Striated thornbill

Flowerpecker
Mistletoe bird

Finches
Double-barred finch
Plum-headed finch
Red-browed finch

Honeyeaters
Striped honeyeater
Noisy miner
Lewin’s honeyeater
Yellow-faced honeyeater
Eastern Spinebill
Scarlet honeyeater
Brown honeyeater
Brown headed honeyeater
White naped honeyeater
Blue faced honeyeater
Noisy Friarbird
Little friarbird

Swallows, Martins
Welcome swallow
Tree martin

Grass Warblers
Golden-headed cisticola

Thrushes
Bassian thrush
Russet-tailed thrush

Woodswallows
Dusky woodswallow
Little woodswallow

Robins
Jacky winter
Rose robin
Red-capped robin
Eastern yellow robin

White-eyes
Silvereye

Starlings
Common Starling

Sitellas
Varied Sitella

Kingfishers
Laughing Kookaburra
Forest Kingfisher
Sacred kingfisher

Fantails
Rufous fantail
Grey fantail
Willie wagtail

Bee-eaters
Rainbow bee-eater

Whistlers, shrike-thrushes
Golden whistler
Rufous whistler
Grey shrike-thrush

Bee-eaters
Rainbow bee-eater