Thursday, August 28, 2014

Tamar Island Wetlands, Tasmania

I visited this intriguing place in the chill of a squally late afternoon in April this year. The birding wasn't great that evening but I suspect I just "lucked-out" as it looks like a great spot!

Superb fairy-wren, Tamar Wetlands Reserve
This information brochure describes how the island in the middle of the Tamar River was originally surrounded by marshland. It was used as a base for dredging to make the river more navigable. Eventually the waterway to the west of the island was filled with scuttled ships and barges thereby increasing the flow through the eastern channel. This was to increase boating access to the Port of Launceston.

A impressive history of how "progress" determines the nature of the local landscape!

Now the island and wetlands to the west of the island are a reserve with boardwalks, hides and other facilities including an "interpretative centre".

Great egret arrives, Tamar Wetlands Reserve 

Pacific gull
Chestnut teal - a chilly way to get a feed! 
Masked lapwing looks to be wishing it was a migratory bird!
Black swan
Little black cormorant on the remains of scuttled vessels?
Black-fronted dotterel
Purple swamphen
Introduced Common greenfinch enjoying one of the exotic trees of Tamar Island planted over 100 years ago
Approaching Tamar Island on one of the boardwalks

A pot of gold at Launceston
Looking south through the long lens to Launceston some 10km away and a good sized (150+) flock of white birds never came close enough for identification (first guess would be Australian white ibis)!
The bird hide
Slowly getting used to ebird (but I do miss the simple but versatile Eremaea!)
Google earth view showing the wetlands and main walking trail. The car park is back at the highway. Now I wonder what that green circle can be!?
My iphoto geotags for this walk!
Bird on!


  1. Beautiful place with such lovely birds.

  2. Looks like a great and extensive place to explore Pete.Don't you just love "interpretive boards? Good to see the Greenfinch in Tasmania and I hope it's doing better than here in the UK.

  3. I hope tp see some of them soon. I´m going to Queensland on a birding trip. :)

  4. Looks like a great spot Pete. You've got some great birds there.