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Birding and Wildlife of the Great Ocean Road, the Grampians and Little Desert

8 Days Fully Accommodated - Tour GORGD1

Tour Cost: $2,450 per person (add $280 single supplement)

Number of Passengers: 6-10
Includes: all meals, accommodation and half day boat trip to Lady Julia Island and three quarter day 4WD desert trip

This wonderful tour takes you to some of Victoria’s most spectacular and diverse scenic attractions.

On leaving Melbourne we make our way to Geelong, Victoria’s second largest city. From here we travel the Great Ocean Road, stopping at world renowned coastal scenic wonders such as Cape Patton, The Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge and London Bridge.

With an annual rainfall of around 2000mm the Otway Ranges is an area we visit to see cool temperate rainforest of Myrtle Beech, Blackwood and Soft Treeferns. Lorne, Apollo Bay, Port Campbell, Warrnambool and Port Fairy are some of the seaside towns we travel through.

While we are in this area we visit Tower Hill National Park, Victoria’s first National Park established in 1892.  This extinct volcano is only one of two in the world to have a lake with an island in the middle.  It is an oasis for wildlife.

From Tower Hill we make our way inland driving through rich dairying and sheep country. This area west of Melbourne is renowned for the many hundreds of extinct volcanoes, said to be the third largest volcanic plain in the world. Then on to Hamilton, southwestern gateway to the Grampians named by Major Sir Thomas Livingston Mitchell in 1836 after the Grampians Range in his homeland Scotland.

Laid down between 400 and 500 million years ago, the Grampians originally a seabed, consist of up thrust sandstone brought about by movement of lava under the earth’s surface. Upheavals and movement of the earth’s surface have formed the steep cliffs on one side and the gentle slopes on the other that we see today. With over 900 native plant species (20+ are endemic) there is always something in flower. The area is rich in fauna, with over 210 species of birds, 11 amphibians, 28 different reptiles, 6 freshwater fish and 35 mammal species. Making this area well worth a visit as lots of different wildlife can be observed within the many different habitats that occur close to Halls Gap, the main village of the Grampians.

The last place we will visit is the Little Desert, not a rolling sand dune desert but a harsh sandy soil environment rich with a diversity of native plants that thrive here.  There is a large list of fauna and flora, with spectacular floral displays in spring and summer.  Most notable amongst the bird species being the Malleefowl or Lowan that builds an incredibly large mound of vegetation in which it lays it’s eggs for incubation.

Potential Bird Species

Black Kite      Black Falcon Peregrine Falcon
Grey Goshawk Square Tailed Kite    Rose Robin
Freckled Duck Chestnut Breasted Shelduck Blue-billed Duck
Australian Shoveler Pink-eared Duck      Southern Emu-wren
Little Lorikeet            Gang Gang  Rainbow Bee-eater
Red-capped Robin Hooded Robin Speckled Warbler
Painted Button-quail Brown Quail Spotted-quail Thrush
Australian Crake      Buff-banded Rail Red-kneed Dotterel           
Peaceful Dove Brush Bronzewing Forest Raven
Painted Honeyeater            Blue-faced Honeyeater Black Honeyeater
Zebra Finch Diamond Firetail Southern Whiteface
Spotted Nightjar Owlet Nightjar           
Masked Owl Powerful Owl             

Potential Other Wildlife

Echidna Koala  Eastern Grey Kangaroo
Western Grey Kangaroo Red Necked Wallaby Black Wallaby
Sugar Glider Common Brush Tailed Possum Common Ring Tailed Possum
Australian Fur Seal Bottle Nosed Dolphin          Southern Right Whale        
Red Deer (introduced)       Common Ring Tailed Possum Lace Monitor Lizard
Common Bearded  Dragon Central Bearded Dragon Shingle Back Lizard
Little Whip Snake Cunningham’s Skink Eastern Snake Neck Turtle

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