Aernout Nieuwkerk (BIRDMAN!)

Completed: 24 October 2019

Photo of Aernout  Nieuwkerk (BIRDMAN!)
Aernout Nieuwkerk
  • Start date: 9 September 2019
  • Age When Completed: 51
  • Direction Walked: North to South

General Comments

Beautiful track with fantastic flora and fauna! Really enjoyed it!

Food/Supplies Comments

I didn’t send any food packages and resupplied entirely in shops along the trail. They had everything I needed. Per the advice from northbound hikers I didn’t rely on the small shops in Donnelly River and Peaceful Bay but carried extra supplies from Balingup and Walpole instead.

Favourite Section

I really loved the entire trail but the granite hills in the Darling Range and the beach walks and dunes in the south stand out. I Also loved the forests that have a great variety of birds, especially in the north.  So not really one favourite section smile


* The abundant birdlife all day.
* Being woken up by Laughing Kookaburras.
* The orchids and tons of other wildflowers.
* The SMELLS of the trees and flowers.
* Flushing emus and kangaroos on the trail.
* Getting chased by a Gould’s goanna (yes, really!)
* The ornate crevice lizards running in all directions when walking on granite in the Darlington Range.
* Seeing several tiger snakes every day in the south and not getting bitten.
* The sound of owls on many nights.
* Finally reaching the sea and the stunning beaches
* Lonely beachwalks where the only footsteps you see are your own.

...and much more!

Personal Reactions

On this visit I had first hiked the Larapinta Trail (very different) and then continued with the Bibbulmun. This was my first visit to Australia so almost all of the flora and fauna was new to me! This made the trail even more interesting and enjoyable.


Birds that I have seen along the trail (117 species):

Emu, Black Swan, Australian Shelduck, Maned Duck, Australasian Shoveler, Pacific Black Duck, Grey Teal, Chestnut Teal,  Hardhead, Blue-billed Duck, Musk Duck, Shining Bronze Cuckoo, Fan-tailed Cuckoo, Common Bronzewing, Brush Bronzewing,  Australasian Swamphen,  Coot, Australasian Grebe, Pied Oystercatcher, Sooty Oystercatcher, Red-capped Plover, Greater Sand Plover, Hooded Dotterel, Black-fronted Dotterel, Bar-tailed Godwit, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Red-necked Stint, Sanderling, Silver Gull, Pacific Gull, Caspian Tern, Greater Crested Tern, Fairy Tern, Little Pied Cormorant, Little Black Cormorant, Australian Pied Cormorant, Great Cormorant, Australasian Darter, Australian White Ibis, Straw-necked Ibis, Yellow-billed Spoonbill, Nankeen Night Heron, Cattle Egret, White-necked Heron, Great White Egret, White-faced Heron, Pacific Reef Heron, Australian Pelican, Eastern Osprey, Square-tailed Kite, Little Eagle, Wedge-tailed Eagle, Brown Goshawk, Collared Sparrowhawk, Swamp Harrier, Whistling Kite, White-bellied Sea Eagle, Laughing Kookaburra, Sacred Kingfisher, Nankeen Kestrel, Brown Falcon, Red-tailed Black Cockatoo, Baudin’s Black Cockatoo,  Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo , Galah, Red-capped Parrot , Western Rosella , Australian Ringneck, Elegant Parrot, Rock Parrot, Purple-crowned Lorikeet, Rainbow Lorikeet, Rufous Treecreeper, Red-winged Fairywren , Splendid Fairywren, Southern Emu-wren, Tawny-crowned Honeyeater, Western Spinebill , Brown Honeyeater, New Holland Honeyeater, Gilbert’s Honeyeater, Western Wattlebird , Red Wattlebird, Singing Honeyeater, Yellow-plumed Honeyeater, Spotted Pardalote, Striated Pardalote, Weebill, White-browed Scrubwren, Western Gerygone, Inland Thornbill, Western Thornbill , Yellow-rumped Thornbill, White-browed Babbler, Dusky Woodswallow, Australian Magpie, Grey Butcherbird, Grey Currawong, Black-faced Cuckooshrike, White-winged Triller, Varied Sittella, Australian Golden Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Grey Shrikethrush, Willie Wagtail, Grey Fantail, Magpie-lark, Australian Raven, White-breasted Robin , Western Yellow Robin, Jacky Winter, Scarlet Robin, Welcome Swallow, Tree Martin, Silvereye, Red-eared Firetail , Australian Pipit.

Heard but not seen: Southern Boobook, Barking Owl and Owlet Nightjar (?)

Furthermore: Kangaroos, wallabies, wild boar, tiger snakes, bobtails, ornate crevice lizards and other skinks, Gould’s goanna, quenda, seals, tadpoles, motorbike frog and others…

Your Best Equipment

My old Osprey Aether 70 backpack (great to carry weight), NeoAir Xlite mattress (super comfortable), my Cumulus Panyam 600 sleepingbag that kept me toasty warm every night and my good old Tarptent Double Rainbow tent where I spent all my nights.

Your Worst Equipment

None , the whole system is well tuned

Advice for Others

Shelters are not far apart, so no need to rush. Take your time to enjoy all the fantastic flora and fauna!