When it comes to wildlife tours, Australia really is the best place to be, with over 378 types of mammals, 828 types of bird, 4,000 types of fish, 300 types of lizards, 140 types of snake and many more calling the land their home. A lot of animals found in Australia are unique to its land, in fact it’s more than 80 per cent, making most encounters once-in-a-lifetime. So, before you travel down under, it’s a good idea to be clued up on which animals to see in Australia. To help you spot some native creatures such as kangaroos, koalas, echidnas, dingoes, platypuses, wallabies and wombats, we’ve compiled a list of Australian animals you’ll want to look out for on your guided tour of Australia.
- Emus – Standing at almost 2 metres tall, the flightless emu is a hard one to miss. If you want to catch them in the wild, they’re most commonly found on the savannah woodland, sclerophyll forests and large areas of grassland.
- Lyrebird – With its beautiful feathered tail, the lyrebird often resides in forests and open woodlands. In Mt Warning National Park and Gondwana Rainforest, you may come across the Albert’s lyrebird, but if not, you should find the more common Superb lyrebird in: Sydney’s Royal National Park and the Illawarra region; the Dandenong Ranges and National Parks surrounding Melbourne; Victoria’s Tower Hill and in many other National Parks along the east coast.
- Penguins – If you want to see one of Australia’s little penguins then the Philip Island in Victoria and Kangaroo Island in South Australia is where these lovely little birds dwell.
- Kookaburras – You may have heard about the bird with the almost human-like laughter. Well that’s the kookaburras. They’re often found in the countryside and city suburbs, and can be heard at dusk and dawn when they make their call.
- Snakes – Australian wildlife is truly incredible but it’s important to stay cautious. For example, Australia is home to 21 out of the world’s top 25 most venomous snakes.
- Lizards – You will come across different species of lizard all over Australia including the captivating frilled lizard and bearded dragons. But if you want to see something particularly cool then the Thorny Devils are usually lurking around Western Australia’s desert land in Shark Bay, Carnarvon and Exmouth.
- Crocodiles – They may be slightly intimidating, but crocodiles are glorious creatures to observe, you just need to keep your distance. If you want to see crocodiles in their own territory then Kakadu and Kimberly National Parks are superb places to visit.
- Fish – Out of all animals found in Australia fish are probably the most varied, with Australia’s marine environment supporting about 4,000 of the world’s 22,000 types of fish.
- Whale – From May to November you should be able to find majestic humpback and orca whales along the east and west coastlines.
- Fur Seal – The adorable Australian fur seals are now protected species, and although you can visit Australian zoos to see these endearing animals, it’s much more authentic experience to see them in their natural habitat. One of the greatest places to observe these animals is on the coast of Kangaroo Island.
- Platypus – When it comes to animals native to Australia, you’ll struggle to find anything as unique as the platypus. Endemic to Eastern Australia, you may have to work harder to find these shy creatures, as they can be difficult to spot.
- Echidna – These spiny anteaters are another one of Australia’s native animals. Looking like a cross between a hedgehog and a porcupine, these prickly animals should be found on Kangaroo Island.
- Kangaroos and Wallabies – When you think about animals in Australia, a Kangaroo is possibly the first that springs to mind. There are 55 different species of kangaroos and wallabies, all native to the land. You’ll likely come across these creatures in the wild in most rural areas and even more so in the outback where you will see them hopping across the road like any old pedestrian.
- Koalas – These sweet, adorable animals are one of Australia’s most beloved. Although they can be found in zoos, it’s much more exciting to witness them in the wild in places like Yanchep National Park and Victoria’s Phillip Island.
- Dingo – The dingo is one of Australia’s largest carnivorous mammals. Although it may be mistaken for a wild dog, it has been verified as its own species. If you want to spot one of these wild animals then you probably won’t have to go far as they’re found all over Australia (excluding Tasmania.)
- Numbats – When observing the wildlife of Australia you never need to travel far. However, if you have your sights set on numbats, then you’ll need to make sure you venture into western Australia.
- Tasmanian Devil – Out of all the wild animals in Australia the Tasmanian devil is an exciting one to spot. If you want to see these creatures in the wild then you need to be in Tasmania, as this is the only place they reside.
Image courtesy of Tourism Australia