Guide to Common Birds of Tasmania
Tasmania is one of Australia’s top birdwatching destinations. Nowhere else in the country can you spot as many endemic species is such a small area. Tasmania is home to twelve endemic bird species, most of which can be seen throughout the entire state.
We’ve created a helpful Tasmanian birdwatching identification guide with quality photos that’s perfect for beginner birdwatchers trying to identify Tasmania’s birds. While there may be more than 380 bird species that have been spotted in Tasmania and its many offshore islands, we will focus on some of the most common birds seen in Tasmania.
Best Birdwatching Spots in Tasmania
The best part of birdwatching in Tasmania is that you can spot a large number of birds almost anywhere in the state. Some species are migratory and can only be spotted during certian months of the year while others are year-round breeding residents.
Tasmania is home to cool temperate forests, wet and dry sclerophyll forests, button grass moorlands, wetlands, and coastal heathlands. Each habitat will offer the chance to see its own unique species.
Birdwatching in Tasmanian National Parks is a great way to tick a number of species off your list. Some notable parks where you can commonly spot large numbers of birds include Narawntapu National Park in the north, Freycinet National Park in the East, and Tasman National Park in the South. Tasmania’s National Parks have even launched a handy birds of Tasmania app that covers roughly 50 of the most common birds found in Tasmania. The app provides information on Tasmanian bird calls, photo identification, and what habitats you are likely to see each species in.
Some of the other top birding locations in Tasmania for twitchers include the Tamar Island Wetlands in Launceston, Don Reserve in Devonport, Leven River in Ulverstone, Royal Tasmanian Botanic Gardens in Hobart, and Orielton Lagoon near Hobart which is recognised as a Ramsar Wetland. If you are wondering where to watch penguins in Tasmania, check out the penguin viewing platform at Lillico beach where you can spot penguins from September to May during their breeding season.
Online Photo Guide to the Birds of Tasmania
Sea & Beaches
Forests & Grasslands
Wetlands, Lakes, & Rivers
Gardens & Urban Areas
Endemic Birds of Tasmania
The following is a list of the 12 endemic bird species in Tasmania:
- Tasmanian Native Hen
- Green rosella
- Dusky robin
- Tasmanian thornbill
- Tasmanian Scrubwren
- Yellow wattlebird
- Yellow-throated honeyeater
- Black-headed honeyeater
- Strong-billed honeyeater
- Black currawong
- Forty spotted pardalote
Eleven of these endemic species can be readily seen in and around Hobart, Tasmania’s largest city. Only the forty-spotted pardalote has a severely restricted range. A good spot to start searching for endemic bird species in Hobart is in Kunanyi/Mount Wellington Park.
Inala Private Conservation Reserve on Bruny Island is probably the best location in Tasmania to see the rare and endemic forty-spotted pardalote. They also have a wonderful bird hide which allows visitors to photograph several different raptors of Tasmania quite easily. Head to Melaleuca in Southwest National Park if you want to see the critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrot.
In addition to the twelve endemic species of birds found in Tasmania, the state also offers up some unique bird subspecies. These include a subspecies of wedge-tailed eagle (Aquila audax fleayi), the Tasmanian masked owl, and the white morph of the grey goshawk. You could also potentially spot various penguin species that visit the island from much further south if you’re lucky. There have been increased sightings of king penguins in Tasmania that last few years.
We highly recommend Dave Watts’s Field Guide to Tasmanian Birds if you are looking for a more comprehensive birds of Tasmania book that will cover most of the birds that can be spotted in the state.