You’ve seen the buildings, the skyscrapers, the scenery and all such things that make you ooh and ahh, but no trip to any part of God’s green earth is fait accompli at this point without seeing a few of the heralded wild animals that call these lands their home.
Sure, they are slowly being snuffed out by development and “progress” and all that seemingly unstoppable, destructive, unsustainable drag but they do still currently exist and there are some top spots to increase your chances spotting these magnificent creatures in the wild (as well as a few fuzzies that reside in sanctuaries)..
As I discover more areas that have an abundance of wildlife, I’ll be adding it to this map.
If it’s kangaroos and wallabies that tickle your fancy, look for the yellow. These cuties, at some point or another, are generally in the vicinity of everywhere that isn’t suburban sprawl. And sometimes they are, but if I were a betting woman, I definitely wouldn’t put my chips down there for spotting a wild one.
Kangaroos and wallabies are everywhere and it’s not hard to see why they are a national icon. They are cute as hell and have that signature bound that makes them so unique and only adds to their adorableness.
Don’t be conned into thinking these guys are aggressive. They are sweet and docile and like many animals have play fights but unlike what you see on the news, they don’t beat the crap out of you like Kangaroo Jack. All those incidents seem to be the red kangaroos that dwell in the desert.
I’m sure if you really pissed off the fellows who reside in the eastern states, you’d have a problem, but for the most part, they’re there minding their own business crunching on grass and surveying to landscape with their cute twitchy ears. Keep your distance like you would any other animals and these loveable creatures are a delight to watch.
While you might get torn to smithereens by Australia’s tree-dwelling zombie nightmares, the Drop Bears, whilst out perusing the bushlands, their much more docile unturned brethren, the koalas, on the other hand, have become a rare breed.
Spotting one in the wild in nigh on impossible. If you don’t want to risk getting savagely torn apart from a dirty grey furball from the sky, many of the zoos and sanctuaries (red) play home to the sweet, placid marsupials.
Creatures Of The Deep
Next up, you’ve got the seasonal whales that flip and flap their way up the east coast in awe-inspiring displays of slaps and splashes. Whether coming to the surface to gulp oxygen or stun seafarers, seeing these majestic creatures of the deep is never anything short of impressive. Head out on the water on a dedicated whale watching cruises for magnificent views of them up close and personal but if you would like to save some money, look for the blue for great places to spot them from shore.
For whale watching tours, click here.
Animals In National Parks
If you’re looking for more of a lucky dip, green will take you out to the untouched expanses like Lamington National Park and Springbrook National Park as that’s your best chance to see wild animals and its always the most rewarding to see animals in their natural environment.
The Green Mountains/ O’Reilly’s section of Lamington National Park has a wild bird feed so the exquisite Crimson Rosella and other beautiful parrots are a likely find as well as various animal shows incase you aren’t able to spot them in the wild yourself. Click here to see their shows.
Heading out at night, the tree-top walk that ascends into the canopy offers an incredible opportunity to spot creatures of the night such as possums as they tiptoe across the branches with absolute stealth.
If you happen to be at the national park next over, there’s a good bet you might spot Pademelons at Springbrook. The smaller members of the kangaroo family usually stay in the dark depth of the rainforest during the day but come dusk, fair chance they are chomping grass at the side of the road just like they bigger cousins (though they are hard to photograph!)
Should you be more inclined to spot those of the lizard family, the bearded water dragon is likely to be the fellow that you see. These beautiful lizards love gardens, especially those with ponds and pools and there are usually a few of them around, though not together. They love laying very still on rocks or paths but if you’re very lucky, you might see one swimming through the water! (Look for them on the map with the red markers)
Birds of a feather
As for the beautiful rainbow lorikeets, you won’t spot them in the trees. You’ll see them fly by with a stunning blur of colour or hear them. They are very, very, very noisy!!! Luckily, they seem to keep most of that noise to sunrise and sunset, but if you’re in an area where they are at, you can’t not hear them. They’re deafening. They are also hard to shoot because they are basically hyperactive squirrels with wings and don’t stay still for long. A great place to hear them… I mean, see them, is Limestone Street in Ipswich. You won’t notice them there during the day, but because of their loud squawking at days end, you can’t miss them.
As for the charming, laughing Kookaburra, these guys are a little harder to pin down. You may stumble upon these beautiful brown and white birds throughout your travels, but I don’t see them that often tied to a place, so with these fellows, it’s more of a random luck of the draw if you do chance upon them
Of the more common species of birds, pelicans are seen most places where there is water, although they never seem to be at the beach like their fellow waterbird pals the silver gulls (seagull).
Magpies, noisy miner birds, crows and masked lapwings are common everywhere you go, but your best bet is always local parks or picnic areas.
Be cautious around the springtime though. Magpies are famous for making people shit themselves when the usually docile bird turns itself into a human-seeking missile to protect its baby.
Noisy miner birds also fly close all times of year but that’s more just how they roll as opposed to wishing to peck your eyeballs out. They’re quite curious and friendly.
Birds of prey on the other hand are generally harder to find. I have often found them flying the skies, but it hasn’t been all that often that I actually see them. I tend to see them stalking the grounds from high up above gliding the air waves over wide open plains, so that is you best best for spotting these beautiful majestic birds.
Happy Animal Seeking
Searching for wild animals is never guaranteed but hopefully with my guide on where to seek out Australia’s beautiful animals, it will help increase your chances of seeing these delightful creatures we share our earth with.
And remember to always be extra careful when driving at sunrise, sunset and at night when the animals are most active, especially the kangaroos, wallabies and rabbits. Sadly, they have yet to learn the ways of the roads.
Do you know of any areas that have a particularly high rate of seeing animals? What’s your favourite animal you’ve seen in the wild?
Other Animals You May Find
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- Wild Animals: Where To Find Guide (Queensland)
- Bunya Mountains National Park: Camping Trip – Day 3
- Bunya Mountains National Park: Camping Trip – Day 2
- Bunya Mountains National Park: Camping Trip
- Wappa Dam and Wappa Falls