Rainbow Bee-eater by David Ong

To many people, birding may seem an unfathomable pastime.

Birding may conjure up images of someone feeding magpies or looking through binoculars at birds in an urban park. Such images of a bird observer may not be accurate.

Perhaps there are as many reasons why people are interested in birding as there are birders.

Some birders wish to see bird species they have not observed before, even if this means travelling to various parts of the country at short notice or trudging through swamps.

Some birders enjoy roughing it, camping in a tent in the remote outback, so that they can see the birds of that region.

Others travel about birding from early morn to dusk but, at night, prefer the comforts of a motel.

Some birders go on a small fishing boat into rough seas to observe seabirds ('a pelagic') whilst others rarely travel far from home.

Some attend birding outings and camps largely for social reasons; some prefer to bird alone.

Apart from conducting surveys, birders are often involved in habitat restoration or protection work.

This sometimes puts birders offside with those who wish to damage bird habitats, e.g. some housing estate developers and some mining companies.

If action is not taken to protect the habitats of birds, bird watching will be more difficult and less enjoyable. That is why more and more stress is being placed on 'conservation' and 'education'. The merger of Bird Observation & Conservation Australia and Birds Australia (to form BirdLife Australia) may further the cause of bird conservation, education and observation.

Birding helps one to better appreciate the natural environment and the inter-relationship between plants and animals.

Birds are flagships, indicators of the environmental health of any area. Diminishing numbers of wild birds indicates that the environment is not in a healthy state (e.g. due to the clearing of bushland or interfering with tidal flats). A high diversity of bird species ~ and good numbers of each species ~ indicates good environmental conditions. Bird numbers rise and fall according to how good weather and climatic conditions have been.

Horsfields Bronze
Horsfield's Bronze Cuckoo (Murray Chambers)

Becoming a BirdLife Australia member enables you to receive a quarterly magazine, email updates and information about BirdLife outings, camps and meetings in various parts of Australia.

By joining BirdLife Australia, you are assisting in the conservation of Australia's birds and bushland.

Convener: Ben Goonan
Deputy Convener: Marian Hill
Secretary: Keith Stockwell
Assistant Secretary: Peter Elliott
Facebook Moderator: Peter Elliott
Treasurer: Simon Starr
Conservation Officer: Simon Starr
Committee member: Ken Dredge
Committee member: Maureen Dredge
Fuel-reduction Burns lobbyists: Pam and John Land




BS Kite
Black-shouldered Kite (photo: Murray Chambers)

BirdLife Echuca District aims to serve BirdLife members who live in north-central Victoria and southern New South Wales.

Our district covers Edward River Shire (Deniliquin-Conargo), Murray River Shire (Moama-Mathoura-Wakool-Barham), Campaspe Shire (Echuca-Rochester-Lockington), Gannawarra Shire (Kerang area), Loddon Shire, City of Greater Bendigo and surrounding areas.


Coming outings and events



Departure time and place



Saturday 8th April 2017

Visit to Crusoe Reservoir KANGAROO FLAT

8.20 for 8.30, Rotary Park, Calder Highway KANGAROO FLAT

Maureen and Ken Dredge

613 M1 (Edition 7)

Saturday 6th May WALPEUP area 3pm outside Walpeup Caravan Park, Mallee Highway WALPEUP Simon Starr Map 540 D2
(Edition 7)
Sunday 7th May 2017 Pine Plains (northern section of Wyperfeld National Park) 8.20 for 8.30 in Casuarina Camp Ground (near Pine Plains Lodge), Meridian Track. Keith Stockwell or Simon Starr 11 A9
(Edition 7)
Monday 8th April Hattah-Kulkyne National Park 8.20 for 8.30 outside the Hattah Store, Calder Highway HATTAH Allan Taylor 613 M1
(Edition 7)
Tuesday 9th May Murray Sunset National Park 8am outside Walpeup Caravan Park. Visit (via Meridian Road) Wymlet Tank and Honeymoon Tank Track. Organiser: Simon Starr

Map 11 B4

(Edition 7)

Saturday 3rd June Kamarooka Forest 8.50 for 9am on corner of Elmore-Raywood Road (C337) and Bendigo-Tennyson Road (C338) KAMAROOKA Jeamnette and Greg License Map 44 H1
Sunday 9th July BOORT 8.50 for 9am in car park outside Boort Caravan Park (opposiute BP service station) BOORT Malcolm Cousland Map 593 O 10

In addition to the above outings, we also conduct bird surveys and advise members of other birding events in our district. More information about forthcoming camps, outings and events is contained in our latest Plains-wanderer newsletter. Alternatively, click on the Coming Events button above.

Gunbower Camp
In late March, more than 40 BirdLife members attended a camp at "TreeTops" begtween Cohuna and Barham on Gunbower Island. 149 bird species were observed during the week-long camp.

Traditional May Outings
For several years, BirdLife Echuca District has organised three consecutive day outings, commencing on the first Sunday of May. Last year we also offered a late afternoon outing on the Saturday prior. The same will be the case again in 2017. The area to be visited is the Victoria Mallee. Participants are asked to arrange their own accommodation, e.g. Casuarina Camp Ground in Wyperfeld National Park (pre-booking with Parks Victoria may be necessary), Pine Plains Lodge or Hilltop Motel OUYEN. BirdLife Echuca District will not handle money or arrange accommodation, i.e. this is not a "campout". See the latest Plains-wanderer newsletter for more details (click on the Latest Newsletter button above to download a pdf copy).

Downloadable birding site guides
The branch has a number of birding site guides that can be downloaded from this site. These gjuides may assist birders who wish to visit our district. There is separate A4 brochure on each of the following areas: Barmah Forest, Mathoura-Gulpa Island, Terrick Terrick National Park, Echuca Moama, Perricoota Road, Kanyapella-Wyuna, Kamarooka, Gunbower Island, Deniliquin, Bendigo, Cohuna, Kerang and Boort.

In addition, printed brochures on the birds of our district may be collected free-of-charge from Echuca Moama Visitor Information Centre or Mathoura RTC or Torrumbarry Weir Kiosk or from Gannawarra Shire offices. We have a plentiful supply of brochures should other outlets wish to distribute same.

Members are invited to join our Facebook page and/or our district email sightings tree. Contact our Secretary for more information.

Make the most of your membership
District members who wish to be advised of forthcoming events by email should supply an email address to head office (or to our branch secretary). Occasional email updates are sent, often at the beginning of a month. We also email members a copy of our quarterly newsletter, Plains-wanderer. Head office has advised us that they will no longer mail our newsletter to district members.

This page was last updated on 6th April 2017.