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Cape York Specialties - Wet Season

Tour Overview:

To the north of Cairns lies the jagged, tooth-shaped and very remote Cape York Peninsula, which almost links to New Guinea, and holds many similar species. Cape York is larger than the Australian state of Victoria, the American state of Utah, and the United Kingdom, all with a population of just 15,000 people split between two small towns; so....bloody remote. The Peninsula north of Cairns is dominated by open Eucalypt Savanna, Tetradonta (woodland) Savanna, and Tropical Rainforest, while there are areas of Tussock Grassland, pockets of Monsoon Vine Forest, Mangroves and even Heathland. The savannas are studded with large termite mounds, and in a very restricted part of the “cape” around Musgrave, these mounds become vital nesting sites for the highly endangered Golden-shouldered Parrot. The savannas also hold targets like Black-backed Butcherbird, Star Finch and the rarer 'chocolate' subspecies of Brown Treecreeper. The heathlands and monsoon forests have targets like the White-streaked Honeyeater and highly range-restricted Green-backed Honeyeater. Further north lies the largest tracts of Lowland Rainforest on the continent, around Lockhart River in the Iron Range. This area has a distinctly New Guinean feel to it, with primary rainforest species occurring that are found nowhere else in Australia, like Eclectus Parrot, Palm Cockatoo, Yellow-billed Kingfisher, Papuan Pitta, Trumpet Manucode, and Magnificent Riflebird headlining. There is a mouth-watering list of other specialties in this area including Spotted Whistling-Duck, Chestnut-breasted Cuckoo, Red-cheeked Parrot, Black-eared Catbird, Fawn-breasted Bowerbird, Green-backed, Tawny-breasted and White-streaked Honeyeaters, Tropical Scrubwren, Black-winged and Frill-necked monarchs, White-faced Robin, Yellow-legged Flycatcher, and the skulking Northern Scrub-Robin. Anyone looking for a dose of New Guinea or a very high Australian list just has to come here, because none of the species listed above are found elsewhere in the country. However, the supporting cast are not to be scoffed at either, with Noisy Pitta, Buff-breasted Paradise-Kingfisher, Wompoo, Superb and Rose-crowned fruit-doves, Rufous Owl, Marbled and Papuan frogmouths, White-throated and Large-tailed nightjars, Lovely Fairywren, Yellow-breasted Boatbill, White-eared Monarch and White-browed Robin all possible on this spectacular tour.