The Laughing Kookaburra The Laughing Kookaburra
(click images to see larger ones)

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Australian Native Birds
Larger Birds
& Birds of Prey
Emus and kookaburras,
eagles and owls ...
On this webpage emus strut, kookaburras laugh and eagles soar.

25-30cm (10-12 inches) is the arbitrary minimum size of Larger Birds. This is measured from bill tip to tail tip.

As a guide, magpies and seagulls are around 40cm - while wrens and robins are around 15cm.

The second part of the webpage are the birds of prey which besides eagles and falcons, also includes owls.

There are over 40 members of the birds of prey group.

Larger Birds
Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike
Brown Cuckoo-Dove (female)
Common Bronzewing
Crested Pigeon
Eastern Koel (female)
Eastern Koel (male)
Eastern Whipbird

Laughing Kookaburra
Peaceful Dove
Pheasant Coucal
Satin Bowerbird
Spangled Drongo
Wonga Pigeon
Birds of Prey
Barn Owl
Brown Falcon
Nankeen Kestrel
Pacific Baza
Powerful Owl
Tawny Frogmouth
Wedge-tailed Eagle
White-bellied Sea-Eagle
Larger Birds

Common Bronzewing Common Bronzewing
(Albany, WA)
The aptly named Common Bronzewing can be found throughout Australia. The female has a grey forehead compared to the male's cream forehead.
Satin Bowerbird Satin Bowerbird
(Blackheath, NSW)
The male Satin Bowerbird doesn't gain his shiny bluish black feathers until he is 7 years old.
Here's another image.
Photos by John French
Satin Bowerbird Satin Bowerbird
(Leura, NSW)
The Satin Bowerbird has the most vivid violet-blue eyes. The bowerbird nest is not the bower, but a "real" nest in a tree.
In their early years males can be distinguished from the ladies by their white beak - as shown in this image.
Peaceful Dove Peaceful Dove
(Cape Leveque, WA)
The Peaceful Dove is found in the eastern states and the north of WA and the NT. The light blue circle around its eyes easily distinguish it. It is a ground forager.
Crested Pigeon Crested Pigeon
Dolans Bay, NSW
Found in most parts of Australia, its wings make a distinctive woop, woop, woop sound when taking off.
Photo by Martin Kandilas
Wonga Pigeon Wonga Pigeon
Mt. Wilson, NSW
Found in forests along the coast and ranges from Queensland to Victoria. Often on the ground and in pairs.
Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike
(Broome, WA)
The Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike is found throughout Australia. This fellow has just caught a grass-hopper.
This image, taken in Lane Cove NP, shows the marvellous back pattern.
Spangled Drongo Spangled Drongo
(Buderim, Qld)
I was delighted to read in Wikipedia that "the spangled drongo is the only drongo to be found in Australia". Its flared tail identifies it. Here's another image.
Here's an image of an immature bird - see its dark eyes.
Photos by Peter Bettess and Alan Lymbery
Laughing Kookaburra Laughing Kookaburra
(Cheltenham, NSW)
That most Australian of birds - the Kookaburra.
Its laugh always makes me smile.
Endemic to Australia, and "introduced" to Tasmania and WA.
See our Laughing Kookaburra profile.
Emu Emu
(Mungo NP, NSW)
The largest Australian bird, found throughout Australia except for Tasmania.
Here's an image, taken in Coffin Bay SA, showing three juveniles with their mum.
Eastern Whipbird Eastern Whipbird
(Brunswick Heads, NSW)
Found in wet forested areas and coastal scrubs from Cairns to Melbourne, its distinctive whip cracking call identifies it - although it is more often heard than seen.
Photo by Alan Lymbery
Pheasant Coucal Pheasant Coucal
(Wooli, NSW)
This very large cuckoo can be found from Sydney around the "top-end" and down to Exmouth in WA.
It's the only Australian cuckoo that builds a nest.
Here's another image.
Photo by Alan Lymbery
Eastern Koel (female) Eastern Koel (female)
(Hazelbrook, NSW)
Eastern Koels are migratory cuckoos and arrive in the Blue Mountains in spring, and then provide a very early morning wake-up call until they head back to New Guinea/Indonesia in early Autumn.
Photo by Niel Carey
Eastern Koel (male) Eastern Koel (male)
(Hazelbrook, NSW)
The hooked beak and red eyes help identify it. Eastern Koels choose the nests of Magpie-larks, Australasian Figbirds and larger honeyeaters.
Here's another image and another.
Photo by Niel Carey
Brown Cuckoo-Dove (female) Brown Cuckoo-Dove (female)
(Blackheath, NSW)
Also known as the Brown, Pheasant or Large-tailed Pigeon, they are found in Eastern Australian rainforests. The female of the species has a brighter chestnut crown.
Photo by John French
Birds of Prey

Powerful Owl Powerful Owl
(Lane Cove NP, NSW)
The largest owl in Australia, and apparently the only owl that has the standard "hoot hoot" call.
To hear its call, and learn much more, visit the excellent Owl Pages website.
It is a threatened species.
Pacific Baza Pacific Baza
(Berrilee, NSW)
Bearing the distinctive hooked beak of a bird of prey, the Pacific Baza was formerly called "Crested Hawk".
It can be identified by the crest on its head - and of course its yellow eyes, grey head and shoulders, and striped body.
Photo by Jeremy Laws
Nankeen Kestrel Nankeen Kestrel
(Wallaroo, SA)
With the tell-tale dark tear of the falcon, the female Nankeen Kestrel has a brown crown, while the male's is grey.
Here's an image of the male.
Photos by Jimmy Hislop
White-bellied Sea-Eagle White-bellied Sea-Eagle
(Jervis Bay, NSW)
Easily identified and magnificent.
Found all around Australia, except for the arid regions.
Photo by Mary
Tawny Frogmouth Tawny Frogmouth
(Cheltenham, NSW)
The Tawny Frogmouth is endemic to Australia, and is found throughout this sunburnt land.
Here's an image taken by John French in Blackheath, NSW.
See our Tawny Frogmouth profile.
Barn Owl Barn Owl
(Brisbane, Qld)
The Barn Owl is found throughout Australia and indeed on every continent in the world except Antarctica.
Here's another image.
Photos by Alan Lymbery
Brown Falcon Brown Falcon
(Murray River, NSW)
Found throughout Australia, the two dark stripes on its face helps identify it.
Photo by Katie Cordes
Wedge-tailed Eagle Wedge-tailed Eagle
(Nullarbor, SA)
Found throughout Australia, it is our largest bird of prey.
The female of the species is larger than the male.
Photo by Alan Lymbery


ACT - Australian Capital Territory
NP - National Park
NSW - New South Wales
NT - Northern Territory
Qld - Queensland
SA - South Australia
Vic. - Victoria
WA - Western Australia

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