The Capertee Valley is recognised internationally as an Important Bird Area (IBA) and one of the 50 top birdwatching locations in the world. A diversity of habitats has resulted in a proliferation of bird species finding refuge here. Surrounded on all sides by spectacular sandstone cliffs, the valley is in a transition zone where the forests of the Blue Mountains give way to the woodlands of the NSW western slopes. Vegetation varies from semi-rainforest to open forest, grassy woodlands and farmland grasslands. Not as heavily cleared as many other rural areas, the valley retains large areas of the critically endangered White Box–Yellow Box–Blakely’s Red Gum Grassy Woodland and Derived Native Grassland. Many woodland bird species, whose populations have fallen alarmingly elsewhere, remain relatively common and easily seen here.
In recent years a prime conservation focus has been extending the habitat of the critically endangered Regent Honeyeater.
Working with landholders and volunteers, the Capertee Valley Regent Honeyeater Recovery Program has planted over 100,000 trees in the valley, on private property. A 2008 survey found 86 species of birds in these planted areas, with six of these being rare and/or endangered. Tree-planting weekends are held each spring and autumn and new volunteer tree-planters are always welcome; no experience necessary.
For more information about volunteer tree-plantings in the Capertee Valley contact Birdlife Australia (Sydney office) on 02 9647 1033.
- Part of the valley’s charm is its comparative isolation. There are no cafés, no petrol stations, and, depending on your service provider and location, there may be no mobile phone coverage.
- All 19 bird-watching sites shown on the map are easily accessible. A small section of the route is unsealed but suitable for 2WD vehicles.
- After rain you may need a 4WD vehicle to visit Site 8.
- If you wish to enter Capertee National Park (Site 14) call NPWS Mudgee office (02 6370 9000) for the padlock access code.
- There are many gravel roads in the Capertee Valley. Beware of livestock and wildlife on the roads.
- Don’t enter private property unless you have the owner’s permission and leave gates as you find them.
- Please do not use bird call broadcasting (playback) as it can be stressful to the birds and disrupt breeding.
- Make sure to pull off the road and park safely before birding.
The Capertee Valley Alliance Inc has developed a map to help you identify key locations and identify the types of birds you are likely to see.
You can view or download it by clicking here .
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