Kuranda Birdworld

Kuranda is a village in the rainforest on the tableland above Cairns. Now a major tourist mecca, it was once a sleepy hippie town where the aroma of marijuana drifted along the beautiful treed streets. It was our first visit to Kuranda, and I was specifically interested in the birds and butterflies, rather than the tourist attractions and shopping. Tonight I will share some of the birds, and maybe tomorrow some of the butterflies.

We drove up from Cairns rather early in the day, arriving well before the first trainload on the Kuranda Scenic Railway, or the spectacular Skyway. We were the first people to enter birdworld, so the big parrots were curious and eager to greet us. This is a Scarlet Macaw from Central and South America.

The dominant bird in the aviary is Eric, the Blue and Gold Macaw. As Eric moved towards a feeding station the other birds moved away …. then we saw why! Eric caught the tail feathers of an Eclectus parrot and hung on, only letting go when a human reached out to help release the captive.

Later Eric was fascinated by my zoom lens, reaching under the rail on which I was stabilising myself, to have a close look and possibly a nibble. Stuart has that photo, which I will share one day. Here is Eric striding along the rail to get close to me!

The aviary is quite well landscaped, with flowing water and a fountain, thick planting, and a few separate areas, one for the Cassowaries.

Mandarin ducks blended in with other water birds, such as Black Swans, egrets, herons and so on.

Doves and pigeons cooed in the trees or the undergrowth … here is an Emerald Dove, and below it a Torres Strait Pigeon.


I like this view of the pigeon revealing its beautifully barred tail feathers.

This is a male Eclectus parrot … we did not see the female … perhaps she was sitting on eggs? There were many more birds, but our favourites were sitting high up in the canopy, grooming themselves and each other. It was almost impossible to get them in the camera's viewfinder, which is why I was squatting under the rail where Eric came to see what I was up to! These are three Glossy Black Cockatoos, the same ones we have at home, but perhaps not as shy.

and here is a close of those glorious tail feathers ….

Wishing you peace and joy, it seems to radiate from these lovely birds! Butterflies tomorrow, so do drop by … only a few days until we are home again and I will be able to came and visit all your blogs to catch up on what I have missed.


19 thoughts on “Kuranda Birdworld

    • It was super Gilly, those big macaws are such characters, watching and listening to every word you say, so intelligent …. and the beautiful black cockatoos so absorped in their grooming, heavenly πŸ™‚

    • I was just thinking how I would like to goback there today … but we are off to the airport now … on our way home after a short stop in Brisbane πŸ™‚

    • hope you enjoyed meeting the macaws? it was magic, especially as it was just us and them, and then one other couple arrived …. we were lucky to be early πŸ™‚

  1. Very nice – Eric could probably open up your camera like a tin of sardines if he wanted to, so keeping a reasonable distance is a good idea. But then some of your native Cockatoo’s could do the same πŸ˜‰ Macaw’s are very intelligent so investigating what a human has around their neck would be exciting for Eric.

    The pecking order amongst birds can be quite amusing to watch though it usually only happens within the individual species – clearly in the captive environment the species have to interact more than they would in the wild. With winter coming soon I shall be watching to see the Blackbirds and Robins in the back garden – guaranteed to be some disputes about territory going on πŸ™‚

    • you made me laugh Martin … but then I remembered the display of hopelessly deformed jewellery at the entry desk … the macaws love to grab women’s glittery adorments and reshape them! I was not wearing any, so the camera was IT for Eric πŸ™‚

  2. Kuranda is such a great place, Christine. We went up on the train and loved the Skyway. Fortunately it wasn’t too busy when we were there, but that was ten years ago, and maybe things have changed since then. Your bird pics are gorgeous.

  3. Superb photos!!!! πŸ™‚

    I used to, before i retired from my regular job, breed blue and gold (and other) macaws. I still have a female scarlet macaw as a pet. She is very affectionate to me and is very intelligent! Macaws are said to have a much larger cerebrum than other birds.

  4. How lovely to see and enjoy the birds in this environment, without feeling guilty that they are captive. I love birds, and they love the G.O. and human nature being what it is we like to get up close with wild things – Kuranda Birdworld seems to navigate that πŸ™‚ How wonderful that you were there early in the day to make the best of it.

  5. The big birds are fascinating to me. They are too big and messy for my house, but I do love them. The photographs are so good here. I love the emerald dove! What a wonderful place to visit, Christine! I would spend hours there if I lived nearby.

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