The Queensland Twitchathon
The Paradise Parrot Trophy
Morning twitching group, mobile and ready
Morning twitching group, mobile and eager to sight their first birds

Why we need twitchers

Keen and experienced birders are sometimes called ‘twitchers’. A small proportion of twitchers can go to extraordinary lengths to see as many different bird species as possible, and in as many different situations, regions and countries. There are a great many variations on what an individual twitcher wants to see but it usually involves personal pleasure or challenge, and not necessarily, though sometimes, a sense of competition.

Often it can be a sociable "fun thing", such as happens with our Queensland Twitchathons. However, the Queensland Twitchathon is primarily aimed at raising funds (through sponsorships) to be used to fund avian research. In addition, most of our team contestants just love to see birds in their natural habitat AND enjoy each other's company with a common goal.

Twitching has other important side benefits in that keen twitchers usually become experienced bird observers, skilled at identifying many bird species under all sorts of weather conditions. We try and include new birders and young birders so that there is maximum benefit from the Twitchathon. Twitchathon participants are most suitable people to assist with the conduct of bird population surveys. Their reliable observations yield the vital data required to indicate whether bird biodiversity is at risk and whether degradation of bird habitats is putting a given species under threat.

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The Queensland Twitchathon

The 2020 Birds Queensland Twitchathon

Subject to COVID-19 Government restrictions and distancing rules prepare to break out of isolation with some full-on birding and start planning for our 2020 Twitchathon between 25 September and 6 October.

This will be our 31st Twitchathon. (30th year of Twitchathons) With the drought over in some areas and a lack of people disturbing the birds for 3 months, maybe there is a chance to get close or beat the impressive total of 221 in 1991?

This year we would again like to encourage new members and those new to twitchathons to join in. We again encourage "experienced" birders to form teams comprised mainly of new birders or first time Twitchathon participants. What better way for newcomers to boost your birding skills than join an experienced birder for 12 or 24 hours of "competitive birding".

Also this year we will again have a whole lot of new fun sub-categories for things like; least experienced, least/greatest distance travelled, mode of travel etc. so check out the Rules.

So via the email or at one of the meetings, register your interest to either join a team or form a team and participate in this unique part of birding and raise sponsorship for the research and conservation projects supported by Birds Queensland.

Then start planning your route for the Queensland Twitchathon between Friday 25 September and Tuesday 6 October. The categories will be the same as last year and 'twitchers' can participate in the Open twitch, an Eco twitch or a Champagne twitch. With the two weekends (including a long weekend) you could even consider doing two twitches on separate days or in separate categories. Prizes and certificates will be awarded to the winners of each category and certificates for the sub-categories. Information on the three categories and the sub-categories can be found in the Rules and Conditions.

As the purpose of the Queensland Twitchathon is primarily to raise sponsorships for the research and conservation projects supported by Birds Queensland, the organising committee will also award prizes to the individual and to the team who raise the highest amount in sponsorships.

You will need to download the Rules and Conditions, Sponsorship Record Form and the Entry Form.

Modified species lists for the 2020 Twitchathon have been prepared:

Full species lists are also available on the website

Registrations open 1 August and close 23 September 2020.
Note: One member of each team must be a member of Birds Queensland.

For those without internet access or the ability to print documents, please contact the Queensland Twitchathon organising co-ordinator at or call Paul Marty on 0418 899 967. Information can then be emailed or posted.

NOTE: Teams will need to observe the COVID-19 Government restrictions and distancing rules in force at the time. This may involve things such as limiting the number of people in a vehicle not from the same family group. Not sharing food and drink, regular hand washing/sanitising etc.

The 2019 Queensland Twitchathon

For the 2019 Twitchathon, over $3500 in sponsorship was raised for the research projects that Birds Queensland supports each year.

Congratulations to the following winners of the 2019 Queensland Twitchathon:

Category Place Team Name Team Members No of Species Seen
(24 hours)
Paradise Parrot Trophy
Restless Birdcatchers Ofalia Ho
Jesse Rowland
Russell Yong
(12 hours)
Winners Golden Hustlers Rae Clark
Andrea Schafer
Adrian Gallagher
Nicky Stafford
(12 hours)
Winners Le Tour de Bribie Paul Marty
Therese Marty
Chris Marty


Special thanks must go to the individual and to the team who raised the highest amounts in sponsorship:

Highest Individual Fundraiser Winner: Dollarbird Trophy   Adrian Gallagher
Highest Team Fundraiser Golden Hustlers Rae Clark, Andrea Schafer, Adrian Gallagher, Nicky Stafford


This year we also awarded certificates in a number of sub-categories as listed below:

Youngest Team Restless Birdcatchers Ofalia Ho, Jesse Rowland, Russell Yong
Most Mature Team Drought Birds Peter Crow, Jean Crow, David Niland, Marie Niland
Rookie Team – no prior Twitchathons Birding Gone Wrong

Feral Jays
Lenn Isidore, Tomás Poch, Rachel Oh

John Walton, Janette Thurley
Highest Non-coastal Total Feral Jays John Walton, Janette Thurley
Highest Night Bird Species Tally Birding Gone Wrong Lenn Isidore, Tomás Poch, Rachel Oh

The Paradise Parrot Trophy

Since 1991, the winners of The Queensland Twitchathon have been presented with the Paradise Parrot Trophy which has plaques engraved with the names of the winning teams and the team members plus the number of species seen.

As the trophy is not always on display, the attached file will give you details of the winning teams since 1991.

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