Bruny Island Birdlife - Tasmanian Native-hen


Bruny Island is home to abundant birdlife, including all 12 species endemic to Tasmania. Some are critically endangered, such as the Forty-spotted Pardalote, the Swift Parrot, and the Tasmanian Wedge-tailed Eagle. All 12 endemic species are protected under Tasmania's Nature Conservation Act 2002.

Bruny Island is a popular place for bird watching, and has been named in the top 10 bird watching sites in Australia by Australian Birdlife magazine.

Watch out for the next Bruny Island Bird Festival, (date TBA).

Photos from award winning photographer Rod Hartvigsen of Murranji Photography


Tasmanian Native-hen

The Tasmanian Native-hen (Tribonyx mortierii) is a flightless bird endemic to Tasmania. It can grow up to 50cm tall.


The Tasmanian Native-hen lives in open areas near water such as grasslands and marshes.


The Tasmanian Native-hen feeds on seeds, grasses, leaves and occasionally insects. Although it cannot fly, it is a capable swimmer and a fast runner, able to reach speeds near 50km/h. The bird is territorial and fights can occur in defence of territory.


The Tasmanian Native-hen is not endangered. However, being a flightless bird with nests on the ground, they are vulnerable to predators such as feral cats and foxes. The hen is a protected species under Tasmanian law.