• Monitor-Birds
    Monitor birds and habitat

About the National Shorebird Monitoring Project

National Shorebird Monitoring happens twice a year (once in summer and once in winter).

The BirdLife Australia National Shorebird Monitoring project provides a better understanding of our national shorebird population by surveying key sites around Australia.

The project is a collaborative effort, made possible by our volunteers, along with associated groups like the Australasian Wader Studies Group (AWSG), which helped the project take flight way back in 2007.

Through this project, BirdLife Australia has been able to identify short- and long-term trends in threatened shorebird populations and worked closely with partners and volunteers across the country to create management plans to reverse the worrying declines observed.

As a National Shorebird Monitoring Volunteer, you will:

  • Observe, identify and count shorebirds
  • Complete field surveys
  • Observe the behaviours of local shorebirds
  • Contribute to management plans to protect shorebird populations and their habitats
  • Take part in shorebird identification workshops
  • Work alongside BirdLife Australia and other volunteers to protect the waders which visit our shores every year

Shorebird Monitoring Volunteer Requirements

Our National Shorebird Monitoring project wouldn’t exist without our thousands of volunteers! Anyone can be a volunteer – whether you’re retired, are a school leaver or just have a little spare time on your hands.

Our only requirement is that you have experience identifying and observing birds and that you have a valid form of transport.

To take part in the Monitoring project, you can either:

  • Go to your local shorebird area independently and count on your own.
  • Join in a large, coordinated count with other volunteers. In this instance, people travel in shared vehicles from an arranged meet-up point.

All sightings are entered into Birdata, Australia’s largest and longest running database for birds.

Who is the volunteer opportunity suited to?

Anyone with a shared love and respect for shorebirds should volunteer for the National Shorebird Monitoring project. This includes:

  • Bird enthusiasts
  • Experienced birdwatchers
  • People who live near a shorebird area
  • Citizen scientists and conservationists

Where can I take part in shorebird monitoring?

There are 520 monitoring sites across Australia. To find your local site, contact us with your location and we will connect you with your nearest shorebird area.


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Volunteer with BirdLife Australia

Our volunteers come from all backgrounds, ages and experiences – and they all help make a real difference for Australia’s most threatened birds.

Register as a Beach-nesting Birds volunteer