Crimson finch

Looking for wildlife in Darwin, Northern Australia

Crimson finch
Crimson finch

We started our exploration of Northern Territory’s capital at Darwin Botanic gardens. We went to the gardens primarily in hopes of spotting resident Rufous Owls that have been nesting near the Rainforest area for a number of years. Unfortunately, by the time we arrived, the owls haven’t been seen in the gardens for months (through they have since re-appeared).

What we did find however, was a little stream with tall grass growing on its banks. This was a perfect habitat for seed-eating finches. We’ve already seen a number of new species of finches on our trip, but there were still more to discover. This particular spot was great for Crimson and Double-barred finches. The birds were gorging themselves on the grass seeds and washing them down with the water from the stream.

Double-barred finch
Double-barred finch

Apart from the finches, I was happy to see a Blue-winged kookaburra, some Pied imperial pigeons and Figbirds.

Blue-winged kookaburra
Blue-winged kookaburra

On our second day in Darwin we drove out to Lee Point to see sea birds and waders. The full list of species can be found in my earlier post on Lee Point .

After an eventful day at Lee Point we headed for a night drive to Fogg Dam and spotted some interesting critters as usual: a dingo, a Northern Death Adder, a slaty-grey snake, a Northern brush-tail possum, a Barn owl and an unfortunately dead Northern Brown Bandicoot on the road.

Northern Death Adder
Northern Death Adder
Barn owl
Barn owl

The following day we headed to the Territory Park, as it was the only place where we could see Antilopine wallaroo. The park was actually quite nice and the bird show was well worth watching to see a Black-breasted buzzard using a rock to crack an egg and an Osprey diving into a pool for a fish.

Antilopine wallaroo
Antilopine wallaroo
Osprey
Osprey
Jabiru
Jabiru

In the afternoon we took a ferry to Mandorah to see the bats that roost underneath the jetty there. The roost was located directly underneath the wooden boards of the jetty and was quite hard to find,  leave alone photograph.

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Brahmini kite
Brahmini kite
White-bellied sea eagle
White-bellied sea eagle
Ancient ocks at Mandorah beach
Ancient rocks at Mandorah beach

A Brahmini kite and a Sea eagle were very easy to find on the other hand, as they circled above us for good half an hour.

Bats at Mandorah
Bats at Mandorah
Australian pelican
Australian pelican
Royal spoon-bill
Royal spoon-bill
Rajah shell-duck
Rajah shell-duck
Gilbert's dragon
Gilbert’s dragon
Gilbert's dragon
Gilbert’s dragon

Previous stop: Fogg Dam                            Next stop: Old Andado Station

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