Christmas Island, Australia - 25 June to 28 June 2019

Published by Sandra Harding (sandraharding234 AT

Participants: Sandra Harding, Ron Dowling


For us in Brisbane it was an opportunity to see the unique birds of Christmas Island and combine the trip with revisiting special birds in southwest Western Australia and going to the Birdlife Conference in Darwin including birding there. The flights from Perth being in the order of $2000 we used this reason to have an overall trip of two weeks. We had three days on Christmas Island staying at the VQ3 Lodge at Flying Fish cove costing a total $495 for a twin room. We hired a Toyota RAV4 from Yoon Kok car hire for $55/day.

Our bird species list was 23 and I got 6 new birds. The weather was warm but not humid and we had time to do snorkelling on the corals near Flying Fish Cove. At Margaret’s Knoll we had close views of Abbott’s Booby and could look down on the Golden Bosunbirds. We sought out the Christmas Island Hawk-Owl on our first night and was successful. This was on the road near the quarry and one bird came into the edge of the road in response to the tape so we had a good view. We had a juvenile Christmas Island Goshawk sitting on a power pole near the airport and had time to see it in the telescope. We only saw two Java Sparrows and this was in in a chicken run at Rocky Point on our last day. The White-breasted waterhen was only found in the scrubby vegetation opposite the graveyard.

Our evening meals were at the Golden Bosun Tavern across the road from our hotel which was great for seeing the sunsets over the ocean. We really enjoyed seeing the red and robber crabs and did the walk in the Dales Ramsar wetlands seeing blue and purple crabs there.

Species Lists

Red Junglefowl, Gallus gallus
Red-tailed Tropicbird, Phaethon rubricauda
White-tailed Tropicbird, Phaethon lepturus
Great Egret, Ardea alba
Pacific Reef Heron, Egretta sacra
Christmas Frigatebird, Fregata andrewsi
Great Frigatebird, Fregata minor
Lesser Frigatebird, Fregata ariel
Abbott's Booby, Papasula abbotti
Red-footed Booby, Sula sula
Brown Booby, Sula leucogaster
Variable Goshawk, Accipiter hiogaster
White-breasted Waterhen, Amaurornis phoenicurus
Brown Noddy, Anous stolidus
Pacific Emerald Dove, Chalcophaps longirostris
Christmas Imperial Pigeon, Ducula whartoni
Christmas Boobook, Ninox natalis
Christmas Island Swiftlet, Collocalia natalis
Nankeen Kestrel, Falco cenchroides
Christmas White-eye, Zosterops natalis
Island Thrush, Turdus poliocephalus
Eurasian Tree Sparrow, Passer montanus
Java Sparrow, Lonchura oryzivora