Bird watching locations and walks in the Tweed Valley, between Byron Bay and the Gold Coast, Northern Rivers, north coast, NSW, Australia
Tweed Bird Observers
TBO's mission: to encourage the appreciation & conservation of birds in the Tweed Valley & surrounding regions
Bird Watching Walks of the Tweed Valley
"Birds of the Tweed Valley" brochure has been produced* by the Tweed Bird Observers who have selected these thirteen sites to provide bird enthusiasts with an opportunity to enjoy this unique area. Please be aware that all walks are undertaken at own risk. You can download the brochure PDF files (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader™) or continue reading down the page for text only extracts.
This web page comprises the text of brochure, "Birds of the Tweed Valley". The walk descriptions include how to get there, brief locality description and a short list of birds that have been previously sighted there.
Visitors to the region and members of other bird groups are welcome to join us at our meetings and outings. Just phone a contact to confirm attendance and details, as meetings and outings can be subject to change because of weather and other cirumstances.
"Birds of the Tweed Valley"
WELCOME to the TWEED VALLEY
The extinct volcano Mt Warning has been eroded to create an unusual geological feature - a caldera. This formation is a roughly circular valley, with the original plug, Mt Warning in the middle and the outer rim formed by the escarpment walls of the McPherson and Border Ranges.
Within Australia, the Tweed Valley has an exceptionally high biodiversity as it supports a high number of plant and animal species. Contributing factors to this are fertile soils, the climate and latitude. This area is able to support temperate and sub-tropical species. Many species here are at the northern or southern extents of their range.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 2k south of Tweed Heads Post Office (P.O.). Turn left from Wharf Street into Florence Street and continue to the riverbank. Looking across the river the site takes in rock walls, sandbars, mangroves, casuarinas and other coastal vegetation. To the keen eye Pacific Golden Plovers and Grey-tailed Tattlers may be seen feeding along the rock walls and a wide range of shore birds may also be seen at low tide
BIRDS SIGHTED: Darter, Australian Pelican, Eastern Reef Egret (grey morph), Osprey, Brahminy Kite, Whistling Kite, Bar-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Eastern Curlew, Grey-tailed Tattler, Red-necked Stint, Beach Stone-curlew, Pied Oystercatcher, Sooty Oystercatcher, Pacific Golden Plover, Masked Lapwing, Crested Tern and Caspian Tern.
MINJUNGBAL ABORIGINAL NATURE RESERVE (Wheelchair accessible) > site
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 3k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Turn left at the lights from Minjungbal Drive into Water Street and continue to the end of the road. The walk commences at a boardwalk that takes you through mangroves and mud flats and provides good bird-watching opportunities for water and bush birds. From the boardwalk follow the bitumen path that is bordered by marsh and sedge lands, paperbarks and swamp oaks. Veering right stroll along the path through sclerophyll bushland and a grove of native ferns to the bora ring, then continue on behind the Minjungbal Aboriginal Museum to your starting point. For the more adventurous birder it is possible to step off the boardwalk and wander through eucalyptus woodland to the river and into mature mangrove habitat. Contact one of our local birdos to guide you.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Great Egret, Striated Heron, Buff-banded Rail, Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Tawny Frogmouth, Superb Fairy-wren, Variegated Fairy-wren, Red-backed Fairy-wren, Large-billed Scrubwren, Mangrove Gerygone, Striped, Lewin's, Brown, White-cheeked and Scarlet Honeyeaters and Golden Whistler.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 5k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Travel along Minjungbal Drive, turn right into Dry Dock Road then follow the river along Philp Parade to the boat ramp - the path starts just off to the left. This walk takes you along the river behind Tweed Broadwater Village to the boardwalk, then onto mangrove and seagrass areas. At low tide a variety of waders may be seen. On leaving the boardwalk turn right to follow the river on a gravel road through wet sclerophyll forest where many species of bush birds are to be found.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Australian Brush-turkey, Royal Spoonbill, Brahminy Kite, Whimbrel, Eastern Curlew, Pied Oystercatcher, Emerald Dove, Eastern Rosella, Collared Kingfisher, Red-backed Fairy-wren, Striped Honeyeater, Little Friarbird, Mangrove Honeyeater, Eastern Spinebill, Scarlet Honeyeater, Eastern Whipbird, Rufous Whistler, Grey Shrike-thrush, Restless Flycatcher, Red-browed Finch.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 6k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Turn right from Minjungbal Drive into Dry Dock Road, then into Fraser Drive turning right at the first roundabout and continue on to Port Drive. A series of ponds is home to a diverse range of bird life, the lily pads providing ideal footing for the Comb-crested Jacana. Casuarinas and melaleucas form part of this diverse habitat so follow the paths through the natural bushland and explore this unique area at your leisure. Much to the delight of our local bird-watchers a pair of Magpie Geese have bred here.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Wandering Whistling-Duck, Chestnut Teal, Black-shouldered Kite, Brahminy Kite, Whistling Kite, Buff-banded Rail, Comb-crested Jacana, Crested Pigeon, Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Pheasant Coucal, Superb and Red-backed Fairy-wren, Striped Honeyeater, Rose Robin, Golden Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Varied Triller.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 6k south of Tweed Heads P.O. From Wharf Street take the Bilambil Heights turnoff under the bridge, travel along Kennedy Drive to Seagulls Club in Gollan Drive. Parking is available at the rear of the club in the far right-hand corner of the parking area. Follow the path behind the fenced-off compound and the walk commences just past Kirkham's Oyster Farm. Home to a superb range of bird life it is not uncommon for 50 - 60 species to be seen on a days outing. Meander along the scenic banks of the Terranora Broadwater passing through sub-tropical rainforest, mangroves and grasslands. Of special interest is a spectacular old Moreton Bay Fig where noisy pittas have been sighted.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Little Black Cormorant, Pied Cormorant, Australian Pelican, Great Egret, Rufous Night Heron, Striated Heron, Wedge-tailed Eagle, White-bellied Sea-Eagle, Pacific Baza, Grey Goshawk, Whimbrel, Pied Oystercatcher, Crested Tern, Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove, Emerald Dove, Pale-headed Rosella, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Tawny Frogmouth, Azure Kingfisher, Sacred Kingfisher, Mangrove Gerygone, Rose Robin, Eastern Yellow Robin, Rufous Whistler, White-eared Monarch, Regent Bowerbird, Double-barred Finch and Golden-headed Cisticola.
ACCESS AND POINTS OF INTEREST: 7k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Travel south to Fraser Drive, turn right into Vintage Lakes Drive and wend your way up to The Grange. This glorious vantage point overlooks the Terranora Broadwater, taking in several large islands, mangroves and sandbars. Migratory waders can be seen on the mud flats, a spotting scope is beneficial. Ospreys nest annually on "Big Island" and to the right a large bat colony is visible. To gain access to the reserve where bush birds are to be found, walk down the track to the right.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Australian Pelican, Great Egret, Striated Heron, Bar-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Eastern Curlew, Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet, Gull-billed Tern, Superb Fairy-wren, Red-backed Fairy-wren, Noisy Friarbird, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, Spangled Drongo and Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 13k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Follow the highway, cross two bridges, take the Chinderah / Fingal Head / Kingscliff exit and turn right at the roundabout into Fingal Road. Left into Main Street, along Prince Street for a short distance then left into Letitia Road. 300m from the start of the gravel road is a small parking spot on the left. This unique area is managed by the Tweed Byron Aboriginal Land Council and is a haven for migratory shore birds, estuarine and bush birds. It is also an important breeding ground for the Little Tern. The peninsula promises to be one of the premier bird-watching venues in the Tweed district due to its diverse habitat and the many different bird species - 165 to date. Walk to the river and turn right, here there are several tracks to follow criss-crossing between the river and the lake and passing through native grasslands, mangroves and sand flats.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Osprey, White-bellied Sea-Eagle, Bar-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Eastern Curlew, Curlew Sandpiper, Red Knot, Grey-tailed Tattler, Pied and Sooty Oystercatchers, Pacific Golden Plover, Red-capped Plover, Caspian Tern, Whiskered Tern, Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Pheasant Coucal, Collared Kingfisher, Sacred Kingfisher, Dollarbird, Mangrove Gerygone, White-throated Gerygone, Red Wattlebird, Golden and Rufous Whistlers, Little Shrike-thrush, Grey Shrike-thrush, Leaden Flycatcher, Restless Flycatcher, White-winged Triller, Varied Triller and Tawny Grassbird.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 14k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Follow the highway, cross two bridges, take the Chinderah / Fingal Head / Kingscliff exit, left at roundabout into Chinderah Bay Drive, turn left into Wommin Bay Road, right into Kingscliff Street, veer right into Pearl Street and continue on through Kingscliff. Turn into the area opposite the Ed Parker Rotary Park (just before the bridge) and follow the gravel road to the end. A small wooden bridge takes you to a track which follows the river, on through dense remnant rainforest, over two small creeks and continues on to terminate at the back of the Kingscliff High School grounds. Return the same way to the banksia woodland, do a left loop through paperbark forest and ephemeral wetland area back to your starting point. An added benefit of this walk is that at low tide you can follow the riverbank upstream to view waders. This area is popular with picnickers and facilities include BBQ, covered picnic tables and toilets.
BIRDS SIGHTED: White-faced Heron, Striated Heron, Royal Spoonbill, Osprey, Brahminy Kite, Whistling Kite, Whimbrel, Eastern Curlew, Pied Oystercatcher, Sooty Oystercatcher, Collared Kingfisher, Sacred Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater, Striped and White-cheeked Honeyeaters, Eastern Whipbird, Spangled Drongo and Varied Triller.
POTTSVILLE ENVIRONMENTAL CENTRE (Wheelchair accessible) > site
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 26k south of Tweed Heads P.O. Take the Tweed Coast Road towards Pottsville, turn right at the bowling club and follow the signs. Set between the two arms of the Cudgera Creek, the 54 hectare park contains fresh and saltwater wetlands, coastal eucalypt forest and remnants of heath and rainforest. When the trees are flowering the area provides excellent bird-watching opportunities. There are easy walking tracks that take you past a large bat colony, koalas have also been seen in the area. Facilities include free electric BBQ, picnic tables and drinking water.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Great Egret, White-faced Heron, Royal Spoonbill, Bar-shouldered Dove, Large-billed Scrubwren, Brown Thornbill, White-cheeked Honeyeater, Scarlet Honeyeater, Eastern Yellow Robin, Eastern Whipbird, Rufous Whistler and Spectacled Monarch.
ACCESS POINTS OF INTEREST: 3k from Murwillumbah P.O. Travel north along the highway to a roundabout, follow the Reserve Creek Road to Quarry Road, turn into Lundberg Drive and the nesting site is on your right. This small marsh area comes to life early in November when the Cattle Egrets, Great Egrets and Pied Cormorants nest.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Pied Cormorant, Great Egret, Cattle Egret, Buff-banded Rail, Masked Lapwing, Superb Fairy-wren, Red-backed Fairy-wren, Noisy Friarbird, Brown Honeyeater, Red-browed Finch, Silvereye.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 12k from Murwillumbah P.O. On the Uki Road follow the signs to Mount Warning. The drive out to Mount Warning provides excellent bird-watching opportunities as you cross over the river and creeks and wind your way through the valley. The Mount Warning National Park is a World Heritage-listed park, at the centre of one of the earth's great ancient volcanos. Although there is a walk to the summit of Mt Warning of approximately 5 hours, the Lyrebird Walk is relatively easy, approximately 20 minutes. The path crosses a little gully and leads up through the rainforest to a lookout. At the time of your visit you may be fortunate enough to hear the call of the elusive Albert's Lyrebird or the Green Catbird. There are picnic facilities available in the car park.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Australian Brush-turkey, White-headed Pigeon, Crested Pigeon, Brown Cuckoo-Dove, Crimson Rosella, Eastern Rosella, Channel-billed Cuckoo, Pheasant Coucal, Tawny Frogmouth, Sacred Kingfisher, White-browed Scrubwren, White-throated Gerygone, Blue-faced Honeyeater, Noisy Miner, Brown Honeyeater, Mistletoebird, Eastern Yellow Robin, Logrunner, Eastern Whipbird, Rufous Whistler, Willy Wagtail, Magpie-lark, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Pied Butcherbird, Australian Magpie, Pied Currawong, Red-browed Finch.
ACCESS & POINTS OF INTEREST: 32k from Murwillumbah P.O. Take the Kyogle Road, right into Tyalgum Road, proceed through Tyalgum following the Byrrill Creek Road south and then into Mebbin Forest Road. There is an enjoyable 45 minute walk down to Byrrill Creek or you may take a drive down Lemon Tree Road and follow a short walking track to the "Giant Ironbark", estimated to be 400 years old. Keep your eyes peeled for Albert's Lyrebird or maybe even a Regent Bowerbird. Please keep in mind this is a National Park so no pets and a vehicle entry fee applies.
BIRDS SIGHTED: White-headed Pigeon, Wompoo Fruit-Dove, Rose-crowned Fruit-Dove, Australian King-Parrot, Crimson Rosella, Tawny Frogmouth, Laughing Kookaburra, Noisy Pitta, Superb and Red-backed Fairy-wrens, White-browed Scrubwren, White-throated Gerygone, Lewin's Honeyeater, Brown Honeyeater, Eastern Yellow Robin, Logrunner, Eastern Whipbird, Golden Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Grey Fantail, Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, Grey Butcherbird, Pied Butcherbird and Green Catbird.
POINTS OF INTEREST: 45k from Murwillumbah P.O. Take the Kyogle road through Uki to the Doon Doon / Crams Farm turnoff. This delightful drive passes through bushland, grazing and tree-lined farming country. There is an undercover picnic area situated on well-maintained grounds close to the water's edge, a great vantage point for viewing. Fresh water and toilet facilities are on site.
BIRDS SIGHTED: Black Swan, Hardhead, Australasian Grebe, Darter, Intermediate Egret, Little Egret, Royal Spoonbill, Black-shouldered Kite, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Purple Swamphen, Eurasian Coot, Comb-crested Jacana, Black-fronted Dotterel, Red-kneed Dotterel, Masked Lapwing, Topknot Pigeon, Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo, Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo, Australian King-Parrot, Laughing Kookaburra, Eastern Whipbird, Cicadabird, Olive-backed Oriole, Grey Butcherbird, Pied Butcherbird, Australian Pipit, Golden-headed Cisticola.