While looking for the birds of the Top End with Luke Paterson of NT Bird Specialists you will see the diverse range of environments of the area.
Moving across the area you will experience a variety of different ecosystems, including, coastal, tidal, estuarine, mangrove and riverine areas, wetlands, savannah woodlands, escarpment and monsoon forest environments.
Wetlands are all the low lying areas which fill up with water in the ‘Wet’ season and gradually dry out though the ‘Dry’ season providing great habitats for the concentration of water birds as the ‘Dry’ progresses. During the ‘Wet’ season the birds are able to disperse to areas much further inland.
Monsoon forests occur in small isolated patches supporting the fruit-eating birds and flying foxes which have an important role in the diversity of the area. These are found in coastal areas and around the wetlands and river systems.
The dominant sandstone escarpment areas of Ubirr and Noulangie in Kakadu National Park provide great examples of this habitat and wonderful examples of Aboriginal Art.
The coastal, tidal, estuarine, mangrove and mudflat areas provide habitats for nurseries for fish, including barramundi and the floodplains, billabongs and rivers are home to the visiting migratory shorebirds birds. The Mangroves and nearby areas are home to many special species.
Savannah woodlands consisting of mostly eucalypts and tall grasses support a great variety of plants, animals and birds. Luke loves to find the special species in these areas.
If you choose a hotel on the Esplanade for your Darwin accommodation your visit will begin with magnificent views of the Darwin Harbour with the sea birds circling and calling.
Travelling around the outskirts of Darwin you will have your introduction to the important mangrove areas and their elusive birds and the foreshore where migratory birds rest on their travels north and south. Over the next days you travel to the Mary River and Kakadu areas. The parallel river systems across the Top End provide endless landscapes and diversity of habitat.
The Mary River area provides an abundance of both the riverine environment and the beautiful wetlands areas. In Kakadu National Park the diversity is very obvious with mangrove, wetland, monsoon forest, escarpment and savannah areas.
Across to the Pine Creek area and the habitat is predominately savannah woodland, home to the famous Gouldian finch and the hooded parrot.
Birdwatchers visiting this amazing area will be rewarded with sightings of many beautiful species both common and rare and will take home memories of a magic environment.