Australian Waterbirds or Wetland Areas

Birds found in Australia in or near bodies of water (mostly freshwater and wetlands)

Avocets (Wetland Birds)

  • Red-necked Avocet (Recurvirostra novaehollandiae) – Range: Found throughout Australia, except for the northern parts of the Northern Territory

White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

Bird of Prey Hunting in Water (Freshwater Hunters)

  • Ospreys (P. h. cristatus) – Range: Along the coastline of, and along some large rivers within, Australia
  • White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) – Resident on coasts and major waterways

Bitterns (Wetland Birds / Waders)

  • Australasian Bittern (Botaurus poiciloptilus) aka Brown Bittern – Range: South-western and south-eastern Australia
  • Black Bittern (Ixobrychus flavicollis)

Eastern Curlew

Curlews (Waders)

Dowitcher (Waders)

  • Asiatic Dowitcher (Limnodromus semipalmatus) – Northern Australia

Egrets (Shallow Water / Wetland Habitats)

Eastern Reef Egret
Eastern Great Egret (Ardea modesta)

Striated Heron, Butorides striata, also known as Mangrove Heron or Little Heron

Herons (Waders)

Straw-necked Ibis, Threskiornis spinicolli

Ibises (Waders)

Australian White Ibis, Threskiornis molucca

Jacanas (Waders)

  • Comb-crested Jacanas (Irediparra gallinacea), also known as the Lotusbird or Lilytrotter – Range: Northern and eastern Australia

Knots (Waders)

  • Great Knot (Calidris tenuirostris) – Range: Winter visitor

Banded Lapwing

Lapwings (Waders)

Oystercatchers (Waders)

South Island Oystercatcher, Haematopus finschi
Sooty Oystercatcher (Haematopus fuliginosus)

Pelicans (Found in inland and coastal waters)

Erect-crested Penguins

Penguins (Shore / Sea)

  • Erect-crested Penguins (Eudyptes sclateri)
  • Little Penguin (Eudyptula minor) – Range: Southern Australia.

Plovers (Waders)

  • Caspian Plover (Charadrius asiaticus) – Range: Vagrant
  • Greater Sand Plover (Charadrius leschenaultii) – Range: Winter visitor
  • Grey Plover (Pluvialis squatarola), known as the Black-bellied Plover in North America – Seabirds
Greater Sand Plover

Sanderlings (Waders)

  • Sanderling (Calidris alba, syn. Crocethia alba or Erolia alba) – Range: Winters in Australia

Snipe (Waders)

  • Latham’s Snipe (Gallinago hardwickii) aka Japanese Snipe – Range: Winters in eastern Australia, where it is the commonest Gallinago snipe
  • Pintail Snipe (Gallinago stenura) aka Pin-tailed Snipe – Range: Vagrant to north-western and northern Australia

Yellow-billed Spoonbill (Platalea flavipes)

Spoonbills (Waders)

  • Royal Spoonbill (Platalea regia) also known as the Black-billed Spoonbill – Range: Fresh and saltwater wetlands in Australia
  • Yellow-billed Spoonbill (Platalea flavipes): Common in south-east Australia

Stilts (Waders)

Banded Stilts
Pied Stilt

Red-necked Stint (Calidris ruficollis)

Stints (Waders)

Stone-curlews (Waders)

Beach Stone-curlew, Esacus giganteus also known as Beach Thick-knee

More Birds Found in Australia

Birds of Inland Waters, Marshes and Wetlands: Ducks, Geese, Shelducks, Shovelers, Moorhens, Crakes, Rails, Grebes, Cormorants, Cranes, Darters, Swans and Storks

Sea and Shorebirds: Birds mostly occurring on the shore or out on the ocean (Seabirds) (Albatrosses, Petrels, Fulmars, Frigatebirds, Godwits, Gannets, Gulls, Sandpipers, Shearwaters, Tattlers, Terns)


Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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