Birdwatching – Wheatbelt Birds
The Wheatbelt Way is home to an amazing array of Western Australian Birds. The regions diverse vegetation is home to a rich abundance of bird species.
Australia has an incredible diversity of bird species, with 898 recorded, including vagrants or accidental visitors and introduced species. Of this total, Western Australia has 550 species, 17 of which are found only in Western Australia. The Avon River Basin which the Wheatbelt Way is a part of, has a remarkable 224 recorded species – over 25 percent of the national total.
In 2018, Wheatbelt NRM has produced a 228 page book covering extensive information and photographs of Wheatbelt birds. This a great resource to assist you in identifying Wheatbelt Birds and can be accessed online free of charge here. There are plenty of places for the avid Birdwatcher to visit and observe our unique and wonderful bird life.
Col and Jan Heap are volunteers with Birdlife WA and have spent many visits out to places in the Wheatbelt Way to observe and record the bird life present. Collecting data about what birds are present and numbers of birds is important. Extensive land clearing of vegetation for agriculture, continued disturbance and the introduction feral pests such as the fox and cat have a direct impact on birds in the Wheatbelt Way. Weeds, climate change and inappropriate fire regimes threaten their habitat and food supplies. Fragmented nature of remnant native vegetation in the region compounds these threats as it compromises remaining populations leaving them vulnerable to disease and predation due to the lack of suitable habitat. It is important to observe and record changes taking place in bird populations to ensure species are not declining further. Below are the Checklists and Sighting Summary’s of what birds Col and Jan have observed at sites in or near the Wheatbelt Way over their time coming out and completing Bird Surveys.