Breakfast with the Gouldians
After an early rise and a 30km drive through the river, billabong, floodplain, woodland and hills habitats of the Top End, we arrive at the Gouldian site to watch the procession of birds coming in for their morning drink. The dynamics of predators and prey mean that the birds are wary as they come in large numbers to water, which makes for fascinating watching as the natural dynamics of our wildlife are played out in front of you. The Double-barred, Masked and Long-tail finches start the parade, shortly to be followed by the Gouldians. Multiple honeyeater species including the Rufous-throated and Banded Honeyeaters, Friarbirds, Trillers,and Peaceful, Diamond and Bar-shouldered Doves all arrive in large numbers. Cockatoos aand Parrots also pass through.
Click here to see a sample video of the Gouldians at the site.
You get to sit and enjoy the sounds of the morning as many hundreds of birds at a time move to the water. At the site it is common to see flocks of over 100 Gouldians at once and in 2018 an incredibly rare yellow-faced Gouldian Finch was among the visiting flock.
Other finch species visit the site and Double-bar Finches, Long-tail Finches and Masked Finches are present in large numbers. Click to see an example. A number of honeyeater species and many other bird species frequent the site. It is a wonderful experience to just sit and watch as the natural cycles of a Top End day play out in front of you.
There are also a range of other animals that use the water point, and as the Dry Season progresses more and more wildlife depend on the site for water. Agile Wallabies and Antilopine Wallaroos are regular visitors. Even the very shy Dingo can be seen at the site.