Migration and Unusual Sightings

- Record your Observations

Many birds migrate through King Island throughout the year, some travelling thousands of miles from their northern hemisphere breeding grounds to spend summer on King Island while others only cross Bass Strait to breed in Tasmania and winter on the mainland.  


A number of the Bass Strait migrants stop and breed on King Island while others just pass through.  We know this happens but we don't know how long they stay or how important it is to their successful migration.  In particular we know very little about the migration of the small bush birds.

Migrating land birds to look out for:

  • Grey Fantail

  • Silvereye

  • Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike

  • Flame Robin

  • Cuckoos - Fantailed and Pallid

  • Bronze-Cuckoos - Horsefields and Shinning

  • Satin Flycatcher

  • Dusky Woodswallow

  • Swift Parrot

  • Orange Bellied Parrot

  • Blue-winged Parrot 

  • Crescent Honeyeater (these are also residents but numbers may increase during spring and autumn)


Unusual Birds

King Island often has visits from birds that are out of their usual range or not commonly seen.  These include bush birds such as Scarlet Honeyeater, Purple-crowned Lorikeet and Rufous Fantail. But they also include sea birds such as Rockhopper and Crested Penguins.  Tracking the arrival and occurrence of these birds may be useful in the future to track the impacts of the changing climate.  

If possible, get a photo of any unusual birds you see.  It helps with identification and to register their presence.

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