South-Western Australia's endemics tour 19 - 27 October 2023

Red-tailed Black Cockatoo - Keith Kennedy - Inala Nature Tours
Red-tailed Black Cockatoo - Keith Kennedy - Inala Nature Tours
Tour date: 
Thursday, 19 October 2023 to Friday, 27 October 2023
9 days
AU$5,300 per person sharing, based on a min of 6 participants. Single supplement: AU$745
A tour showcases some of the key birding areas of South-Western Australia, with a chance of seeing the South Western endemics and near-endemics. We will cover a diverse range of habitats and soak up the wonderful inland and coastal South Australia, full of fabulous birds, mammals, flora and of course outstanding landscape.

Western Australia is Australia’s largest state, covering almost 1 million square miles and comprising the western third of the continent (which is an area larger than Western Europe). More than 500 bird species have been recorded here, including 18 endemics and many other sub-species, near endemics, migratory and other highly sought-after species.

This tour concentrates on the south-western ‘corner’ of the state where most of the endemics can be located. The south-west of Western Australia is also one of the world's biodiversity ‘hotspots’, with some of the richest and most unique plant and animal life on earth. There are about 13,000 species of plants in Western Australia, many of which are yet to be formally named. Although primarily a birding tour, this trip will also provide opportunities to see some unique mammals and flora.

Start Location: 
Perth WA
Finish location: 
Perth WA

Inala’s South-western Australian Endemics Tour

Perth-Cheynes Beach-Dryandra  19 - 27 October 2023

Western Australia is Australia’s largest state, covering almost 1 million square miles and comprising the western third of the continent (which is an area larger than Western Europe). More than 500 bird species have been recorded here, including 18 endemics and many other sub-species, near endemics, migratory and other highly sought-after species. This tour concentrates on the south-western ‘corner’ of the state where most of the endemics can be located. The south-west of Western Australia is also one of the world's biodiversity ‘hotspots’, with some of the richest and most unique plant and animal life on earth. There are about 13,000 species of plants in Western Australia, many of which are yet to be formally named. Although primarily a birding tour, this trip will also provide opportunities to see some unique mammals and flora.

This itinerary has been designed to adjoin our Tasmanian Endemics Tours Sat 28 Oct to Mon 6 Nov 2023


Day 1. Thu 19 Oct 2023. Arrive Perth
Day 2. Fri 20 Oct 2023. Perth to Cheynes Beach
Day 3. Sat 21 Oct 2023. Cheynes Beach - Waychinicup Inlet
Day 4. Sun 22 Oct 2023. Cheynes Beach - Stirling Range - Albany
Day 5. Mon 23 Oct 2023. Cheynes Beach to Jerramungup
Day 6. Tue 24 Oct 2023. Jerramungup to Stirling Range National Park
Day 7. Wed 25 Oct 2023. Dryandra State Forest and nocturnal wildlife.
Day 8. Thu 26 Oct 2023. Narrogin to Darling Range and Perth
Day 9. Fri 27 Oct 2023. Depart Perth.


B- breakfast, L- lunch, D-dinner

Day 1. Arrive in Perth. 
Today has been set aside as an arrival day so you are free to arrive at any time that suits your travel plans. You are to make your own way to the hotel in the city and we will meet at the hotel at 7.00pm for a brief orientation and welcome dinner. Please note that no activities have been planned for today but if you plan to arrive early and would like advice on options for the day please do contact our office.
Accommodation: Perth (en suite rooms).Meals included: D

Day 2. Perth to Cheynes Beach.
This morning after an early breakfast we travel to the southern coastline of Western Australia. Today is a long travel day but we will stop en route to bird. We will visit the Darling Range in search of the first of the endemics with Western Wattlebird and Gilbert's Honeyeater. We continue to Williams and a stop at the Beaufort River to look for Pink-eared Duck, Elegant Parrot, Brown-headed Honeyeater, Rufous Songlark, White-winged Triller and a chance of Painted Buttonquail and Black-tailed Native-hen. We continue to Kojonup and then to Rocky Gully where we will look for Western Corella and Baudin's Black Cockatoo. We will travel to Mt Barker and then stop at Porongurup for more chances of Baudin's Black Cockatoo and Scarlet Robin. We hope to arrive at Cheynes Beach in time for a first look for Noisy Scrubbird.
Accommodation: Cheynes Beach (en suite rooms).Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 3. Cheynes Beach - Waychinicup Inlet.
This morning we will take a pre-breakfast walk to look for Noisy Scrub-bird and Western Bristlebird. After breakfast, we will spend the morning looking for Western Whipbird (nigrogularis), White-breasted Robin, Red-winged Fairy-wren, Splendid Fairy-wren, Western Wattlebird, Western Spinebill, Red-eared Firetail, Southern Emu-wren, Brush Bronzewing, Brown Quail, Sooty Oystercatcher and Pacific Gull. Lunch at Cheynes Beach. After lunch, we will look for Rock Parrot along the beach and then visit the very scenic Waychinicup Inlet for more chances of Red-winged Fairy-wren, Red-eared Firetail, Southern Emu-wren, Gilbert's Honeyeater, Carnaby's Black Cockatoo, Baudin's Black Cockatoo, Swamp Harrier, White-bellied Sea-Eagle. There are also good chances during the day for Southern Brown Bandicoot and several reptiles and with luck Quokka and Bush Rat. After dinner, we will take a spotlighting trip in search of Spotted Nightjar and Tawny Frogmouth with chances of a few mammals, frogs or reptiles.
Accommodation: Cheynes Beach (en suite rooms).  Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 4. Cheynes Beach - Stirling Range - Albany. 
We will spend the early morning at Cheynes Beach if needed, and then travel to the Stirling Range where we will spend the morning looking for Emu, Hooded Plover, Carnaby's Black Cockatoo, Elegant Parrot, Regent Parrot, Purple-crowned Lorikeet, Western Yellow Robin, Scarlet Robin, Restless Flycatcher and chances of Crested Shrike-tit, Australian Owlet-nightjar, Little Eagle, Rufous Songlark, Southern Emu-wren, Western (Rufous) Fieldwren and Square-tailed Kite. This is also a great place to view wildflowers. After lunch, we will go to Albany for more chances of Red-winged Fairy-wren, White-breasted Robin, Western Rosella, Red-eared Firetail and chances of Buff-banded Rail, Fairy Tern, some shorebirds and if time permits some seabirds. If needed, we have the option of visiting Two People's Bay which is a good backup site for Western Bristlebird and Western Whipbird (nigrogularis). Return to Cheynes Beach with another chance to spotlight for nocturnal birds and mammals after dinner.
Accommodation: Cheyne Beach (en suite rooms). Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 5. Cheynes Beach to Jerramungup. 
We have a final chance to search for Noisy Scrub-bird before travelling to Jerramungup and then east towards the Fitzgerald River NP to look for Western (Mallee) Whipbird (oberon), Shy Heathwren and Western (Rufous) Fieldwren. This is another excellent area for wildflowers. We will also look for Black-fronted Dotterel and Chestnut Teal. After lunch at Jerramungup we will visit the mallee to the south west where we will visit a Malleefowl mound (may not be active) and look for Purple-gaped Honeyeater, Tawny-crowned Honeyeater, Southern Scrub-robin, White-browed Babbler, Spotted (Yellow-rumped) Pardalote, Blue-breasted Fairy-wren with chances for Banded Lapwing, Crested Bellbird and Square-tailed Kite plus more chances for Shy Heathwren, Western (Mallee) Whipbird (oberon) and Painted Button-quail. There is also a high chance of seeing Western Brush Wallaby. We will stay in this area until late afternoon to search for Malleefowl along the roadside, before travelling back to Jerramungup for dinner.
Accommodation: Jerramungup (en suite rooms). Please note that only classic old-style basic (but clean) accommodation is available here, but this is the only chance for Malleefowl, so please bear with us! Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 6. Jerramungup to Narrogin. 
After an early breakfast, we may revisit parts of the Stirling Range before continuing to Gnowangerup, Katanning and Wagin. We will visit several of the lakes near Wagin where the main targets are Banded Stilt, Red-necked Avocet, Black-fronted Dotterel, Red-kneed Dotterel, Pallid Cuckoo, Horsfield's Bronze-Cuckoo, Chestnut-rumped Thornbill, Mistletoebird, Red-capped Robin, Mulga Parrot and Hooded Plover. We will arrive in Narrogin in the late afternoon, hopefully with enough time to visit Fox's Lair near our accommodation.
Accommodation: Narrogin (en suite rooms).Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 7. Dryandra State Forest. Narrogin. 
We depart after an early breakfast for Dryandra State Forest. We probably will not return until about 22:30. The key targets today include Bush Stone-curlew, Painted Button-quail, Carnaby's Black Cockatoo, Elegant Parrot, Rufous Treecreeper, Blue-breasted Fairy-wren, Western Thornbill, Yellow-plumed Honeyeater, Brown-headed Honeyeater, Gilbert's Honeyeater, White-eared Honeyeater, White-browed Babbler, Varied Sittella, Jacky Winter, Scarlet Robin, Red-capped Robin, Hooded Robin, Western Yellow Robin, and Crested Shrike-tit. We will also search for Numbat throughout the day, with the best chance in the late afternoon. After an early dinner, we will take a walk in an extensive fenced enclosure within Dryandra State Forest where the Department of Parks & Wildlife’s amazing efforts at breeding a variety threatened species has been very successful. We may encounter Bilby, Boodie (Burrowing Bettong), Mala (Rufous Hare-wallaby), Marl (Western-barred Bandicoot) and Mernine (Banded Hare-wallaby). This hare-wallaby is the sole surviving species of sthenurine kangaroos in a safe fox-free environment.
Accommodation: Narrogin (en suite rooms). Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 8. Narrogin to Perth. 
We depart early this morning after breakfast. Activities for today depends on what we haven't seen. We have further options for Regent Parrot, Hooded Robin, Crested Shrike-tit, Red-eared Firetail, Baudin's Black Cockatoo, White-fronted Chat, Rufous Songlark, Brown Songlark, Gilbert's Honeyeater, Western Wattlebird and Fairy Tern. This afternoon will be spent around the Perth wetlands including Herdsman Lake for waterbirds such as Blue-billed Duck, Musk Duck, Pink-eared Duck, Australasian Shoveler, Freckled Duck, Great Crested Grebe, Hoary-headed Grebe, Nankeen Night-Heron, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Buff-banded Rail, Australian Crake, Spotless Crake, Swamp Harrier and Australian Hobby. We then travel to our accommodation in Perth at about 18:00.
Accommodation: Perth (en suite rooms). Meals included: B, L, D.

Day 9. Depart Perth. 
This morning we will depart Perth airport where the tour will end. Participants continuing onto the Inala Tasmanian tour will fly Perth to Hobart today to join the rest of the group.
Accommodation: none Meals included: B.


Group size: minimum 6 and maximum 8 participants to one guide or 9 to 12 pax with 2 guides.
Tour Price: AU$5,300 per person twin share.
Single supplement: Single supplement AU$745.

These prices are based on the current rate of GST and may need to be adjusted if there are significant changes.

Price includes: Accommodation as per the itinerary, specialist guide and transport, meals, entrance fees and activities as mentioned in the itinerary.

Price does not include: International and domestic airfares, alcoholic beverages, snacks, internet, laundry or other items of a personal nature.

Please note: Meals and drinks: Breakfast generally consists of a continental style breakfast with cereal, fruit and yoghurt and tea/coffee.  Full cooked breakfast is not generally offered at most locations.  Lunch will generally consist of a packed lunch style meal eaten in the field, with sandwich/filled roll, fruit, and a drink.  Dinner usually consists of several options for main with the choice of either an appetiser or dessert. Drinks (soft and alcoholic) are generally not included but at lunches and breakfasts juice may be made available.

The itinerary: Whilst we aim to follow the itinerary as planned, please note that the itinerary provided should only be used as a guideline.  Depending on individual trip circumstances, weather, and local information, the exact itinerary may not be strictly adhered to.  The guides reserve the right to make changes to the itinerary as they see fit.

Click here for a separate online doc that answers many of the frequently asked questions about Small Group Tours

Naturalist Journeys/Inala Nature Tours
South West Endemics Tour - Trip Report - 5th to 11th October 2019


Trip Report compiled by Tour Leader: Frank O’Connor

Tour Summary:

The South West corner of Western Australia is an ecological hotspot with a high diversity of endemic plant, mammal and bird species. This tour concentrated on the endemic bird species, but it didn't ignore the flora and other wildlife that we saw. We commenced in Perth. We spent a little time in the Darling Range, and then drove to Frankland before heading to Cheyne Beach on the south coast east of Albany. We birded the coastal heathland of Cheyne Beach, Waychinicup Inlet and Betty's Beach. We spent a day in the mallee heath and wandoo woodland of the Stirling Range NP, the karri forest of the Porongurup NP and a few areas around Albany. We then travelled to Jerramungup and spent a day in the mallee heath and mallee near the Fitzgerald River NP and Corackerup NR. We spent a day travelling from Jerramungup to Narrogin visiting the salt lakes near Wagin and Foxes Lair NR in Narrogin. We spent a day in Dryandra SF birding the wandoo woodland and kwongan heath, before visiting the Barna Mia enclosure in the evening. On the final day we visited some more wandoo woodland on Wearne Road near North Bannister, and then some wetlands in Perth.

The highlights were all the south west endemics and nearly near endemics possible on this itinerary including Noisy Scrubbird, Western Bristlebird,Western Fieldwren and Black-throated Whipbird; fantastic views of a MALLEEFOWL!; six species of Australasian robins; four species of Australasian Wrens; Shy Heathwren; all south west cockatoos and parrots; all south west honeyeaters; all south west waterfowl including Freckled Duck; Tawny Frogmouth; and unusually a Black-eared Cuckoo. We also saw Short-beaked Echidna, Southern Right Whales, Quokka, King's Skink and Gould's Monitor. Disappointingly Crested Shriketit and Painted Buttonquail eluded us.

 Saturday October 5th. Perth to Cheyne Beach.

We started with an early departure from Perth in reasonable weather, especially considering the storms on the previous day. The first day was a long drive, but there was time for some birding. Our first stop was in the Darling Range to see Western Wattlebird, the first of the south west endemics. We also saw New Holland Honeyeater, Common Bronzewing and Tree Martin. A rest stop found a Gilbert’s Honeyeater and more Western Wattlebirds. Heading south along Albany Highway we found a flock of Baudin’s Black Cockatoos plus some White-faced Herons. A few people were fortunate to see Regent Parrot. We refuelled at Williams, and continued to Kojonup for lunch. We then went to Frankland where we disappointed with only a fly by Western Corella, so we then went on to where we found a flock of about 50. We refuelled in Mt Barker where we had fly by Purple-crowned Lorikeets and then did some shopping before we headed to Cheyne Beach. There was a Southern Right Whale in the bay. The first people to look down the ‘Noisy Scrubbird’ track were fortunate to see one sprint across the road, and the group were very fortunate to see a Quokka. We then checked in and saw Splendid Fairywren and Spotted Scrubwren on the lawn by the cabins. As we went to dinner we found a Southern Brown Bandicoot (Quenda).

Sunday October 6th. Cheyne Beach and Betty’s Beach.

The morning was very frustrating but we did see White-cheeked Honeyeater, Western Spinebill and Tawny-crowned Honeyeater. A Red-capped Parrot flew past showing the yellow rump. We could hear distant Noisy Scrubbirds. We heard a few Black-throated (Western) Whipbirds but could not get close to them. No calls from Western Bristlebirds or Southern Emu-wrens. Brown Quails called frequently in the heath. We had fair views of a Swamp Harrier and good views of an Eastern Osprey. As we returned to our cabins for breakfast some of us saw Red-eared Firetail. White-breasted Robin showed well. After breakfast we spent a short unsuccessfully looking for Noisy Scrub-bird and then we went to the point where we had scope views of a distant Sooty Oystercatcher. A sub adult Pacific Gull flew past.

We then visited the Offal Pit! A Western Bristlebird called but didn’t show but we did have good views of a female Western Whistler and a group of at least four Red-winged Fairywrens. We had distant views of a Brown Falcon and a Peregrine Falcon flew overhead. We returned to the caravan park for lunch. We heard Shining Bronze Cuckoo and Fan-tailed Cuckoo but only a few people saw them. Grey Fantail showed very well. Some people saw two White-bellied Sea Eagles.

After lunch we went to Betty’s Beach and were very successful in having excellent views of a pair of Southern Emu-wrens and a Western Bristlebird. We also saw some distant Australasian Gannets, and poor views of a Little Eagle. We returned to Cheyne Beach and saw three Southern Right Whales in the bay, and two King’s Skinks on the rocks. We staked out the ‘scrubbird’ track again and were successful. We then went to look for Spotted Nightjar as it began to get dark. We had fair views of a Wedge-tailed Eagle. The nightjar called distantly but never came close.

 Monday October 7th - Stirling Range, Porongurup NP, Albany.

We left Cheyne Beach at 7am. We stopped on South Coast Highway for several White-necked Herons.

We refuelled at Bakers Junction, and then headed north to the Stirling Range where we went along the north side of the park. We saw two Emus but they were shy and quickly ran away. At the Camel Lake NR we saw three Hooded Plovers. We also saw a Wedge-tailed Eagle and a Whistling Kite.
We continued to where we had great success with Striated Pardalote, Western Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Grey Shrikethrush, Red-capped Parrot, Western Yellow Robin, Little Eagle, Yellow-plumed Honeyeater and Gilbert’s Honeyeater (feeding young). Many Carnaby’s Black Cockatoos were heard but only one or two were very poorly seen. Frank heard a distant Regent Parrot and Cat saw a White-winged Triller. We went over the road to try for Crested Shrike-tit. No success but we saw Dusky Woodswallow and Sacred Kingfisher, plus an Elegant Parrot flew over. We had lunch at the Stirling Range Retreat where we saw Purple-crowned Lorikeet, Restless Flycatcher (on a nest), Yellow-plumed Honeyeater, Grey Shrikethrush and a pair of Little Eagles. After lunch and ice creams we went south to the Porongurup NP.

We walked the Bolganup Trail, but it was quiet but we did see Inland Thornbill. Under the gazebo at the picnic area we saw three male Red-winged Fairywrens, a Rufous Treecreeper, a White-breasted Robin and a Spotted Scrubwren. We went to Albany to refuel and shop for groceries, and then took the scenic route back down to the harbour, where we saw Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Great Egret, Australian Pied Oystercatcher, Australian Pelican, Little Pied Cormorant and Little Black Cormorant. After dinner at Cheyne Beach we walked along the top of the caravan park. We failed to find any Honey Possums but we did hear two Australian Boobooks but they were hidden in the top of the trees. A couple of people saw a Southern Brown Bandicoot.

Tuesday October 8th - Jerramungup & Mallee.

After we had breakfast and packed the bus, a Shining Bronze Cuckoo was calling and the Noisy Scrubbird could clearly be heard from the cabins. We had a last try for Brown Quail and better views of Red-eared Firetail but no success. We then headed for Jerramungup. We refuelled and then headed west towards the Fitzgerald River NP. Fair views of several Horsfield’s Bronze Cuckoos. The heath had many honeyeaters, most of them were Tawny-crowned Honeyeater. A Brown Falcon was seen carrying a smallish reptile. We had great views of a Western Fieldwren and the yellow-rumped form of Spotted Pardalote. Shy Heathwren was not at its usual hangouts, but we found a pair not far from the road and had reasonable views. We then returned to Jerramungup stopping at the a bridge on the way. Chestnut Teals showed fairly well, but no Black-fronted Dotterels. Up the hill we saw Elegant Parrot, Black-faced Woodswallow and surprisingly a Black-eared Cuckoo.

The main lunch table site was occupied so we went to the park which proved a bonus as we had lunch near some flowering eucalypts where we saw Yellow-throated Miner, Purple-crowned Lorikeet and several Brown-headed Honeyeaters. We checked into the hotel, pre-ordered dinner and then went to the mallee near the Corackerup NR. We saw a Shingleback on the road.

We visited the old Malleefowl mound that David Attenborough was filmed on in the Life of Birds. We heard Purple-gaped Honeyeaters, but they didn’t show. We were early so we walked a little further along the track. Amazingly there was a MALLEEFOWL walking along the side of the track. An amazing bonus. We also saw a Southern Scrub Robin. We then tried a couple of sites for Black-throated (Western) Whipbird but failed. We then stopped for a Short-beaked Echidna and a whipbird called. It took a little while, but we all saw the Black-throated Whipbird, and then a Purple-gaped Honeyeater perched in the open on a dead tree. We then headed out slowly but saw nothing much of interest and then headed for Jerramungup. A day with some outstanding highlights.

Wednesday October 9th - Jerramungup to Narrogin.

We headed west to Ongerup where we stopped in town and saw Regent Parrots (including two entering a nest hole) and Elegant Parrots.

The next stop was Katanning where we shopped, and then we continued north where we had a short walk in some woodland. A few saw Western Rosella and we all saw Weebill. We then went to Wagin for lunch near the Giant Ram. After lunch we went to a salt lake.  The water level was still high and so the only shorebird was Pied Stilt. There were large numbers of Grey Teal, Australian Shelduck Black Swan and Eurasian Coot plus distant views of Australasian Shoveler and a Hoary-headed Grebe. We then went to a lake where we saw Mistletoebird and Rufous Whistler.

The final stop near Wagin was the water treatment plant where we saw Black-fronted Dotterel, Pink-eared Duck and Hardhead. We then went to our accommodation in Narrogin, checked in, did some shopping and then we went to the nearby Foxes Lair NR. We saw Red-capped Parrot, Gilbert’s Honeyeater and Scarlet Robin, plus we heard Western Gerygone and saw many platelets made by Painted Buttonquail.

Thursday October 10th - Dryandra State Forest and nocturnal wildlife.
We departed after an early breakfast to spend the day in  Dryandra State Forest seeing Laughing Dove, Common Bronzewing, Crested Pigeon and Ringneck Parrot along the roadside on the way there.  Throughout the day we moved through lots of separate locations within Dryandra  to hunt out the key target birds that live within the dry forest habitats.

Over the day some of the highlight birds we saw included Brown Goshawk, Collared Sparrowhawk, Purple-crowned Lorikeet, Sacred Kingfisher, Rainbow Bee-eater, Rufous Treecreeper, Blue-breasted Fairy-wren, Weebill, Western Gerygone, Western Thornbill, White-eared Honeyeater, Singing Honeyeater, White-browed Babbler, Western Whistler, Jacky Winter, Restless Flycatcher and a beautiful Red-capped Robin.

We had a fantastic long view of a Gould’s Monitor on the road in front of us and during pre-meal preparation, some guests took a short walk back down the road to see the Kangaroos who were lounging around and also got an excellent sighting of an Short-beaked Echidna feeding in the field.

After dinner in the field, we took a walk in an extensive fenced enclosure within Dryandra State Forest where the Department of Parks & Wildlife’s amazing efforts at breeding a variety threatened species has been very successful. We saw Bilby, Boodie (Burrowing Bettong), Mala (Rufous Hare-wallaby), Marl (Western-barred Bandicoot) and Mernine (Banded Hare-wallaby). This hare-wallaby is the sole surviving species of sthenurine kangaroos in a safe fox-free environment.
Another short nocturnal drive to look for Southern Boobook gave us a very brief sighting before we returned to Narrogin motel.

Friday 11th Oct - Narrogin to Perth

We departed early this morning after breakfast. On our way back to Perth we made some stops aalong the way.  A major highlight was an excellent sighting of Red-tailed Black Cockatoo sitting beautifully for us at the top of a tree.  We also had perfect views of a Rufous Songlark who was singing their heart out and some more wonderful Rainbow Bee-eaters hunting nearby as we walked through the forest dotted with many incredible flowering plants.

We had lunch at Bibra Lake where we were visited by several beautiful Great Crested Grebes and a very friendly Willy Wagtail. The final stop was a visit to Herdsman Lake. This lake always has an excellent range of waterbirds and we saw Buff-banded Rail, Freckled Duck, Pink-eared Duck, Australasian Shoveler, Blue-billed Duck, Nankeen Night Heron, Australasian Grebe and Great Crested Grebe. We also saw several adorable  Tawny Frogmouth hiding well amongst the foliage.   We also saw Swamp Harrier, Little Grassbird, Australian Reed Warbler and Black-faced Cuckooshrike.
Our last night was a return to Sullivans Hotel in Perth with a final great meal together.

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