The Northern Territory is home to the highest number of waterbirds in Australia as well as some of the most beautiful and rare bird species.
The aptly-named Bird Billabong is located in the Mary River National Park between the Mount Bundey Hills and the Mary River channel, and is teeming with many of them.
Take the pleasant 2 kilometre stroll to the billabong through scenic surrounds. Stand on the viewing platform at the waters edge, taking in panoramic views over the billabong - a permanent fresh water swamp surrounded by paperbark forests. The full loop walk of the billabong is an easy 4.5km, which should take around 2 hours.
Bring your binoculars and camera - there's so much to see - Magpie geese, ducks, Jabiru, herons, ibis and other waterbirds are known to frequent the landlocked billabong. Many species such as Radjah Shelduck breed in the billabong as waters recede on the wetlands. The billabong changes vastly across seasons, from fully flooded (February/March) to parched dry (usually by October).
The Mary River is one of eight rivers in the Top End that have large floodplains in their catchments. The Arnhem Highway crosses five of these eight rivers as you travel between Darwin and Jabiru.