An unforgettable, 4-day small group bird tour discovering the shorebird capital of Australia
Broome’s Roebuck Bay is acknowledged as being the shorebird capital of Australia. The Broome region is home to more than 325 species of birds, over one third of Australia’s total species. This includes 55 species of shorebirds, which is nearly a quarter of the world’s total. From September to April the vast, nutrient-rich tidal mudflats are visited by half a million wader birds that have flown an 11,000 kilometre journey non-stop from Siberia, North Asia and the Arctic Circle.
Join our expert guides as they introduce you to the diversity of bird life and local wildlife in and around the internationally recognized Roebuck Bay and Eco Beach. Discover amazing stories of the lives of these birds and witness some of the great sights in nature. Explore diverse and rich mangrove ecosystems, watch thousands of roosting shorebirds on red sandy beaches and enjoy the setting of Western Australian sun over vast empty plains. You will also discover the conservation importance of the region and the extensive research that is being conducted on local shorebirds.
Our guides are experienced birdwatchers with an intimate knowledge of the region regions birds. Whether you’re new to birdwatching or targeting something specific, this small group experience is tailored to suit your needs.
- Expert naturalist guides with over 20 years’ experience
- Intimate encounters with a variety of bird species
- Expert guided bird tours in the shorebird capital of Australia
- Spectacular coastal scenery
- Stay overnight at the Bird Observatory and the eco-friendly Eco Beach Resort
- Small group, personalised experience of up to 8 people
- This eco tour supports local shorebird conservation and research efforts
Duration: 4 days, 3 nights
Departs: Broome, 2018
Price: From $1,780 per person
Day 1 Broome – Roebuck Bay – Bush and Plains Bird Tour
Hotel pick up and travel to the internationally renowned Broome Bird Observatory. Ideally situated on the shores of Roebuck Bay, Broome Bird Observatory has unequalled access to the hundreds of thousands of migratory shorebirds which visit the region. We settle into our accommodation for the next few days, before a light lunch and an overview of the conservation importance of Roebuck Bay. In the afternoon we join our local expert guides for a bush and plains tour. The natural grasslands of Roebuck Plains Station are home to a wide variety bird life including pipits, bushlarks, cisticolas, bustard and quail, Oriental Plover, Yellow Wagtails and sometimes Oriental Pratincole. Freshwater lakes and claypans are homes to dozens of species of ducks and shorebirds, including Brolgas, Black-necked Storks and large numbers of Little Curlew.You’ll experience the magic of Roebuck Plains at sunset as we seek out local bird and wildlife species including raptors, Brolgas, and the Northern Nail-tail Wallaby. Return to our accommodation base for a group dinner. (LD) Overnight: Broome Bird Observatory
Day 2 Mangrove and Shorebird Tour
Breakfast before our expert guided bird tour. We begin at the end of Crab Creek Road, where the pindan meets the plain and the extensive mangrove system of the eastern shores of Roebuck Bay begins. The mangroves around Broome are havens for a variety of species including Broad-billed Flycatchers, White-breasted Whistlers, Red-headed Honeyeaters, Mangrove Golden Whistlers and many, many more.
This tour includes a walk of about one kilometre, each way, walking on sand along the beach and a small section of mud to reach a more extensive area of mangroves along Little Crab Creek. You will spend time deep among the mangroves, searching for several special birds typically restricted to this habitat, including Mangrove Grey Fantail, Dusky Gerygone, and Broad-billed Flycatcher. After emerging on the far side of the mangroves, good views can be had of the abundant bird life feeding out on the Roebuck Bay mudflats, and a variety of other fascinating creatures are likely to be encountered.
Afterwards we leave the mangroves visiting roost sites along the northern shores of the bay during the high tide period. At this time, the shorebirds are forced from their feeding areas by the rising tide and come to rest at specific locations along the shoreline. This gives us an unique opportunity to view a wide variety of shorebird species at relatively close range which helps to discern the sometimes subtle features that distinguish the different species.
Your guide will describe key identification criteria, as well as discuss the ecology and conservation importance of Roebuck Bay and the incredible life cycle of the migratory shorebirds that utilise the bay. You will also hear about the extensive research that is conducted on the shorebirds of the bay.
In the afternoon you have the option to relax back at our accommodation base, or take an afternoon self-guided bird walk. Sunset drinks and group dinner. Note: The times of tours are subject to tide times and may vary slightly. (BLD) Overnight: Broome Bird Observatory
Day 3 Broome Bird Observatory – Eco Beach
Breakfast and we say goodbye to Roebuck Bay for our journey to Eco Beach. Set amongst the pristine and untouched Kimberley coast, Eco Beach provides a spectacular coastal backdrop and beautifully appointed eco-friendly accommodation. Enjoy some time to relax, or take a swim in the infinity pool overlooking the ocean before an afternoon walk to the local bird hide. Return for sunset drinks, dinner and an opportunity to walk along the beach at night on high tide in search of nesting flatback turtles. Our expert guides will talk about turtle nesting behaviours and the turtle research we have been undertaking for ten years. (BLD) Overnight: Eco Beach Resort
Day 4 Eco Beach – Broome
Sunrise beach walk in search of shorebirds and raptors. The early morning is the best time for bird activity and a wonderful time of the day to witness the sunrise colours. A late leisurely breakfast back at our accommodation, before our return journey to Broome. Our approximate arrival time back to Broome is 12pm. (B)
About our naturalist guides
Steve Winderlich and Anne O’Dea have over 20 years’ experience in natural and cultural resource management. They are passionate about marine and terrestrial protected areas and wildlife. Their experience includes running research and monitoring programs, bird tours, volunteer engagement, education, interpretation and training. Steve and Anne have interesting stories to share having spent time working in National Parks including Fraser Island, the jointly managed Kakadu National Park and more recently Papua New Guinea. Ann also featured in the ABC Television Series – Kakadu.
B- Self serve continental breakfast
Meals are a group activity with everyone assisting with the catering. Meals are simple and wholesome, using fresh local produce. If you have special dietary requirements please let us know in advance and we are happy to assist. BYO alcohol is allowed in your accommodation, otherwise you can purchase supplies from the resort bar at your own expense. Additional meals and snacks may be purchased at your own expense from the resort restaurant (please note that during this time of the year the restaurant hours can be limited during the week).
Easy to moderate. This tour involves some short walks of up to 2 – 3 kilometres in warm climatic conditions and sometimes on soft sand.
- Group of up to 8 people
- Minimum age for participation is 8 years.
- Participants under 16 are to be accompanied by an adult.
- Departures subject to 4 people travelling .
The Bird Observatory exists to facilitate research focused on Roebuck Bay and migratory waders in the East-Asian Australasian Flyway. Their principle aim is to support the conservation of the migratory shorebirds which visit Roebuck Bay. This eco tour supports the ongoing important work of the Bird Observatory through use of their accommodation and local specialist guides.
Location and Transportation
This eco-tour is located at Roebuck Bay and Eco Beach on Western Australia’s Kimberley Coast.
You will be transported from Broome in an air conditioned vehicle with forward facing seats.
2 nights’ accommodation at the Bird Observatory in basic but comfortable air conditioned single, twin or double rooms. Guest amenities with toilet and shower facilities are shared and a short walk from your rooms. Linen is provided, please bring a bath towel.
1 night at the beautifully appointed and eco-friendly 4 star Eco Beach Resort. Choose from single, twin or double accommodation in a beautifully appointed air conditioned garden view villa with private bathroom facilities. All linen provided. Optional upgrade package includes an upgrade to an ocean view villa at Eco Beach resort. Perched on the escarpment these villas provide views of the ocean.
All prices are for 4 days 3 nights, per person.
Basic Package – Eco Tent @ Eco Beach Resort
Twin or Double Room: $1,680
Single Room: $1,780
Child 8 – 12 years: $1,620
– Basic package includes non-air-conditioned Eco Tent accommodation at Eco Beach Resort
Twin or Double Room: $1,780
Single Room: $1,880
Child 8 – 12 years: $1,720
– Comfort package includes Garden View Eco Villa for or night at Eco Beach
Twin or Double Room: $1,880
Single Room: $2,080
Child 8 – 12 years: $1,820
– Upgrade package includes Ocean View Villa for our night at Eco Beach
3 nights’ accommodation • transfers from Broome • experienced naturalist guides for the duration of the tour • specialist guided bird tours at the Bird Observatory • all meals
Departs Broome: 11.30 am
3 – 6 December 2017 Bookings closed
Email us to register for 2018 dates
Pick up locations and approximate times:
– 11.30am Mercure Broome
– 11.40am Mangrove Hotel
– 11.50am Oaks Cable Beach Sanctuary
– 12 noon Cable Beach Club Resort and Spa
Returns: Day 4 at approximately 12pm – Broome accommodation or airport
Pre and Post Tour Accommodation
Do you need pre or post accommodation in Broome? We can assist you with accommodation bookings in Broome and Eco Beach. Email us your dates, preferred price range and if would like to stay in Broome or Cable Beach.