Birds & birding in the Blue Mountains & Capertee Valley, Australia



Welcome to bmbirding.com.au, the website dedicated to birds and birding in and around the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney – a beautiful, surprising and diverse region which includes the sensational Capertee Valley. Further down this page you'll find a map and general description of the area.

I reckon I'm truly lucky to earn my living doing what I love. Working as a guide means that I get to introduce others to the incredible native birdlife and wildlife in my favourite places and play a part in providing people with some of their best memories! I get to meet people from all walks of life and from all continents who are bound by a common interest: wild birds, the challenge of finding them and the thrill of watching them. Every day is different, every day brings its own surprises and highlights. I've been guiding birders as my main occupation since 2001 and part-time for many years before that. The business part of this site will be the section giving details of my services as a birding guide. Please email me if you'd like to find out more.

Some sections of this site are still under construction, but the Quick Links menu above will help you explore what's already here. Eventually I hope the site keeps growing to be a comprehensive resource for both visitors and locals, with useful information on the area's birdlife, the lives, habits and habitats of the birds, the things you need to know to find them, and some things you can do to help protect them.

- Carol, July 2007


Update Dec 2012: Now on Twitter @carolprobets



Blue Mountains Bird Observers

CLICK HERE to go to the Blue Mountains Bird Observers website and access the club's walks programme, how to join and contact information.
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I acknowledge the traditional owners of this area:
the Darug, Gundungurra, Wiradjuri and Darkinyung people.

The Blue Mountains region

Location map
The Greater Blue Mountains and surrounding area (map by CP). Click on the map to see a larger version in a new window.
Situated on the doorstep of Australia's largest and busiest city (that's Sydney), the Blue Mountains is a spectacularly beautiful area where it's easy to escape the crowds into an awe-inspiring world where civilization seems a million miles away. These are not mountains in the traditional sense so much as a giant plateau dissected by deep canyons and gorges. It's an area of breathtaking views and hidden natural wonders. The City of Blue Mountains — the built environment that forms the cultural heart of the area — is essentially a string of interesting townships sandwiched between vast tracts of native bush. This "city" is located within a chain of National Parks extending for 240 kilometres from north to south and forming the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area encompassing 1.03 million hectares. These National Parks include the Blue Mountains, Wollemi, Gardens of Stone and Kanangra-Boyd.

This website is concerned with the "greater Blue Mountains" in a more general sense — a term which, for our purposes, refers to a broad area stretching from the Nepean River (which basically forms a convenient boundary between western Sydney and the lower Blue Mountains) on the eastern side, to around Lithgow in the west; south to Kanangra Walls, and north to take in the sensational Capertee Valley. Much of this area is rugged wilderness but it extends to agricultural land on its western flanks and in some of the valleys (the Capertee, Wolgan, Hartley, Kanimbla and Megalong Valleys). At its highest point the plateau rises to around 1300 metres above sea level — not particularly high by world mountain standards but high enough for the climate to be significantly cooler than Sydney, the air fresher, and for a wide variety of habitats relating to various altitudes, aspects and soil types.



The charming Rockwarbler (Origma solitaria) is limited entirely to the Sydney region and can be found at many of the lookouts and rocky areas in the Blue Mountains. Photo Nevil Lazarus.
Such a variety of habitats of course translates to a diversity of birdlife, with the main Blue Mountains plateau characterised by mostly forest and heathland species (with colourful parrots, the legendary Superb Lyrebird, and the locally endemic Rockwarbler all being relatively easy to find) while the Capertee Valley is where you'll see birds more typical of drier inland areas, including a high number of rare and threatened species. Within an easy drive at the foot of the mountains lies the Hawkesbury River valley (Richmond and Windsor area), well-known for its wetlands and rich floodplain making it a great place to see a variety of waterbirds as well as grassland species and raptors.

The Greater Blue Mountains was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2000 in recognition of its natural values, particularly its exceptional diversity of eucalypts and eucalypt-dominated ecosystems — with 91 species of Eucalyptus, it contains 13 percent of the global total. For more information on the area's World Heritage values click here.

This fascinating region has been my stamping ground for the past 25 years, as a birder, bushwalker, member of the community, professional guide and someone who just loves getting out and exploring and learning about the natural world. Those of us who live here are truly privileged!

- Carol, 26th April 2006




The rugged landscape around Mount Banks offers scenic birding with the Grose Valley as a backdrop. Wedge-tailed Eagles, White-eared and Tawny-crowned Honeyeaters and Beautiful Firetails can all be found at this site. Photo CP.

Photo credits, top of page composite: Gang-gang Cockatoo N.Lazarus; Mount Wilson forest C.Probets; Carol in Capertee Valley CP collection; Regent Honeyeater N.Lazarus; Jamison Valley dawn C.Probets.

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Website written and designed by Carol Probets.
This page last updated 1st December 2012.
© 2012 C. Probets, www.bmbirding.com.au