Curlew

The sound of a curlew crying at night has many meanings according to Aboriginal lore.  Xavier Herbert writes in “Poor Man My Country” that curlew calls the spirits of souls wanting to be born. In the northern areas of Queensland, it is the sound of the dead returning to the …

Emu

Emu has a very big place in the Dreaming and the energies of this land. Originally found everywhere, the settlements of white man have pushed Emu farther out, away from ‘civilisation.’ And the only way you can truly see Emu in the sky is if you too are away from …

Fairy Penguin

All penguins in Australia are only found on the southern shores where temperatures are cooler, and predominantly off the coast of Tasmania. The Little Penguin, otherwise known as a Fairy Penguin, is smaller than the usual penguin being only about thirty-three centimetres long.  They are the only type of penguin …

Finch

There is something very cheerful and exciting about a flock of finches flying across the skies, moving from tree to tree, or foraging in long grass; chattering and making such an abundantly happy sound! These birds are predominant in the northern parts of Australia. The journeys of the Finch brothers …

Galah

If someone is acting the Galah, they are up to some rather silly antics!  Galahs can be seen in large flocks, in trees, feeding on the ground, or caged as a pet.  They are very fond of aerobatic displays, pinks and greys alternatively flashing against the brilliant blue skies.  They …

Hawk

These beautiful proud birds of prey soar the skies, handsome and powerful.  Hawks, especially the whistling kite, are a common sight along the coast of Australia as well as inland.  When they swoop down to their prey, they plummet from the sky, unstoppable and direct to their target. Others will …

Ibis

An Australian symbol, the Australian White Ibis are almost ubiquitous in cityscapes, as well as wetlands. These birds are very similar in appearance to it’s sister species, the Egyptian Sacred Ibis. In Australia there is also the  Straw-necked Ibis and the more rarer Glossy Ibis.The order also includes the Spoonbill, which is …

Jabiru

Australia’s only true stork, this attractive black and white bird stands an impressive 1.5 metres tall.  It’s large, powerful beak has been attributed to a spearing in the Dreaming, which also resulted in the bird staying around water to avoid its protagonist. “Jabiru” is not an Aboriginal word; it comes …

Kookaburra

  Kookaburras are a well-known symbol of Australia, sometimes referred to as a laughing jackass. Territorial birds, they remain in family groups until around four years of age.  The offspring help with the feeding of successive generations before they start their own families.  They also build their nests in not …

Lyrebird

Lyrebird is the mimic of the bush, copying the calls of the other birds and bush sounds.  It is the male who carries the beautiful tail feathers shaped like a lyre.  During mating season, he builds a mound out of forest debris that serves as a platform from which he …