Birdwatching in Sydney Park
Sydney Park is a true urban oasis for both people and birds. Formerly a brickmaking site and then landfill, the City of Sydney transformed mountains of garbage into wetlands for birds.
Located in Alexandria, Sydney Park provides 40 hectares in a part of the city that would otherwise largely be a concrete jungle. The park itself alternates between rolling hills and open fields with the wetlands that criss-cross the park, creeks feeding into each other. We had driven by the park countless times before we stepped foot inside (mostly on the way to IKEA). The parks iconic brick chimneys can be seen from far away and are unmistakable.
Now, before we get too far, we want to say that we recommend this park as a great bird watching option for people who live in Sydney or visitors to Sydney that have already checked a few other spots off their list like the Centennial Park or Sydney Olympic Park.
With that said, however, Sydney Park provides an amazing opportunity to see a variety of wetlands birds including ducks, cormorants, rails and much more. There is an incredible amount of wildlife that lives within the wetlands including frogs and turtles. In a surprising twist, we even saw several Monarch Butterflies when we visited!
The layout of the park makes it easy to find the wetlands. Look for painted white circles with frog pads on them throughout the paths. These will lead you to the wetlands. Once you’re there, the rest becomes obvious. The wetlands are formed by reusing and diverting rainwater. Most of the sections in the park are open, but there is a gated path through the wetlands that dogs are not allowed into which provides an opportunity to see some birds close-up. We were delighted when the Buff-banded Rail darted out in this section. Of course once realizing we were there, it darted right back in, but still a thrill nonetheless.
We recommend 1-2 hours for birdwatching at Sydney Park. And if it’s your local, go back. Get an idea of what birds are really common and which ones you think are just visiting. Like all things in life, the secrets of the wetlands will reveal themselves to you over time.
As always, we recommend a nearby place to grab a pint where you can sit down and talk about the birds you saw. Grifter’s Brewery is a five minute uber drive from the park. Located in Marrickville, this local brewery will delight you with their quirky flavours such as watermelon and cucumber. That sounds gross, but we process you’ll love it.
Without further adieu, our list of birds for Sydney Park:
Australian Black Swan
Pacific Black Duck
Little Black Cormorant
Let us know what you see there!