Nature’s Gems – Dusky Woodswallow

Recently I travelled out to the Granite Belt near Stanthorpe to visit Girraween National Park.  

At this time of the year, it is a mecca for nature enthusiasts who visit to see the wildflowers in bloom.  

Girraween National Park is also home to many wildlife species.  

Canungra Law

One bird that I regularly encounter there is the Dusky Woodswallow. This bird species is easily recognised by its small size and chocolate brown colouring.   

Another diagnostic feature of the Dusky Woodswallow is the white line on the edge of the wing.  

Usually, I see the birds in pairs or singly sitting out on exposed branches where their presence can sometimes be missed if they do not call.  In flight, these birds can be very active chasing insects to feed on. There are six species of Woodswallow in Australia. The most similar species is the Little Woodswallow. However, the Little Woodswallow differs from the Dusky Woodswallow as it is smaller in size and lack the white line on the side of the wings. 

Dusky Woodswallows will utilise several habitats including timbered watercourses, open woodlands and timbered farmland.  

Their range in Australia extends from Queensland to the southern states of Victoria and into South Australia and Western Australia.  I have also observed the birds in the Tasmania.  

For such a small creature, these birds can move long distances. Dusky Woodswallows are relatively common and in the right habitat, they are usually not hard to find.  

As I have mentioned about other bird species, knowing their call makes finding these birds easier. Having some patience watching these birds is essential as they can be nervous. I find once I see the bird, I stay quiet and move slowly towards them and stop occasionally. Usually, I can get quite close before the birds move on.  

These small birds are always a delight to watch, and I am sure that if you do visit Girraween National Park, at some point this bird will show itself!