About Australian Birds

- an Australia My Land Project

Shore Birds Found In Australia

Shore Feeders and Nesters

Shore birds, 'waders' or 'coastal water birds' are found on beaches, mudflats and wetland lagoons. Many are migratory and visit Australia during the cold Northern Hemisphere winter.

Their main food source is at the edge of the ocean and may include insects, worms, small crabs, crustaceans and molluscs; some even feed on small fish and others on lizards and seeds.

Their means of 'catching' or finding their food is varied with some benefitted by long beaks that reach into burrows in the tidal sand and others depending on their speed to catch prey on the surface or in shallow water.

Most Shore birds nest on the ground rather than in nests high above the ground; the Migratory birds nest in the Northern Hemisphere in burrows and shallow depressions. Other characteristics are their long legs in relation to their body size and they do not webbing on their feet and thus they do not swim.

CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGE

Herons, Egrets and Bitterns

White Faced HeronWHITE FACED HERON

Photo Gerry Pearce

Curlews, Godwits and allies

Pied oystercatcherPIED OYSTERCATCHER

Photo Lyle Stacpoole

 

Sandpipers and allies

Wood SandpiperWOOD SANDPIPER

Photo Kollie Smith

Plovers and Dotterels

Hooded PloverHOODED PLOVER

Resident

 

List of Shore Birds of Australia

SEE DATA ABBREVIATIONS LEGEND

Herons

SEE HERONS, EGRETS AND BITTERNS PHOTOS AND DATA

• Black-crowned Night Heron

• Great-billed Heron

• Nankeen Night Heron

• Pied Heron

• Striated Heron

• White-Faced Heron

• White-necked Heron

Egrets

• Cattle Egret

• Eastern Reef Egret

• Eastern Great Egret

• Great Egret

• Intermediate Egret

• Little Egret

Curlews

SEE CURLEWS AND ALLIES PHOTOS AND DATA

• Beach stone-curlew [Resident]

• Bush Stone-curlew [Resident]

• Eastern Curlew [Migratory:]

• Little Curlew [Migratory:]

Godwits

• Bar-tailed Godwit [Migratory: Northern Siberia and Alaska]

• Black-tailed Godwit [Migratory: Mongolia and Eastern Siberia Siberia]

• Hudsonian Godwit [Vagrant Migratory: North America to South America]

Oystercatchers

• Sooty Oystercatcher [Resident]

• Pied Oystercatcher [Resident]

Whimbrel

• Eurasian Whimbrel [Migratory: Subarctic Asia and Europe]

Plover and Dotterels

SEE PLOVERS AND DOTTERELS PHOTOS AND DATA

• Caspian Plover [Vagrant]

• Double-banded Plover [Migratory:]

• Greater [or Large] Sand Plover [Migratory:]

• Grey Plover [Migratory:]

• Hooded Plover [Resident]

• Lesser [or Mongolian] Sand Plover [Migratory:]

• Little Ringed Plover [Vagrant]

• Oriental Plover [Migratory:]

• Pacific Golden Plover [Migratory:]

• Red-capped Plover [Resident]

• Black-fronted Dotterel [Resident]

• Inland Dotterel [Resident]

• Red-kneed Dotterel [Resident]

• Ruddy Turnstone [Sea-Dotterel - M/Q]

Sandpiper

SEE SANDPIPERS AND SIMILAR SHORE BIRDS PHOTOS AND DATA

• Baird's Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Broad-billed Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• Buff-breasted Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Common Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• Curlew Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• Marsh Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• Pectoral Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• Sanderling [Migratory:]

• Sharp-tailed Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• Terek Sandpiper [Migratory:]

• White-rumped Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Wood Sandpiper [Migratory:]

Snipes

• Australian Painted-snipe [Resident]

• Latham's Snipe [Migratory:]

• Pin-tailed Snipe [Migratory:]

• Swinhoe's Snipe [Migratory:]

Stints

• Banded Stilt [Resident]

• Black-winged Stilt [Resident]

• Long-toed Stint [Migratory:]

• Red-necked Stint [Migratory:]

Spoonbills

• Royal Spoonbill

• Yellow-billed Spoonbill

Others

• Black-faced Sheathbill

• South Island Pied Oystercatcher [Vagrant]

• American Golden Plover [Vagrant]

• Ringed Plover [Vagrant]

• Kentish Plover [Vagrant]

• Grey-headed Lapwing [Vagrant]

• Pheasant-tailed Jacana [Vagrant]

• Eurasian Curlew [Vagrant]

• Upland Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Green Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Spotted Redshank [Vagrant]

• Nordmann's Greenshank [Vagrant]

• Lesser Yellowlegs [Vagrant]

• Short-billed Dowitcher [Vagrant]

• Little Stint [Vagrant]

• White-rumped Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Dunlin [Vagrant]

• Stilt Sandpiper [Vagrant]

• Wilson's Phalarope [Vagrant]

• Grey Phalarope [Vagrant]

 

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Data Abbreviations Legend

Origin

E - Endemic

R - Resident

M - Migratory

V - Vagrant

Size; in length

L:230-400mm

Location     - SEE BIRD MAP

A - All Australia

CY - Cape York

QT - Queensland Wet Tropics

CC - Central Channel Country

EA - Eastern Australia

SE - South Eastern Australia

T - Tasmania

CD - Central/Southern Deserts

SW - South of Western Australia

NW - North West Australia