Australia has many iconic and amazing animals high on any visitor's wish lists during a visit to this great southern land.
In Victoria some mammals have become extinct or very rare since European settlement and many others are nocturnal and difficult to observe in the wild. However given some time and effort many interesting animals can be observed.
Below is a list of some of the animals inhabiting Victorian areas visited by Firetail Birdwatching Tours with an indication of how likely an observation may be.
Short-beaked Echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), one of the two monotremes (egg-laying mammals). Mostly nocturnal but also regularly active in daytime especially in winter. Widespread throughout Victoria and fairly regularly encountered.
Platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus), the other monotreme, the aquatic Platypus may be seen at dawn or dusk in certain lakes and rivers. On occasion there may be an opportunity to search for this species during a bird tour.
Yellow-footed Antechinus (Antechinus flavipes), mostly found in woodlands of central and southern Victoria, sometimes active in daytime, quite common but only occasionally seen.
Agile, Dusky and Swamp Antechinus. These three species occur in wetter habitats of southern and eastern Victoria
Brush-tailed Phascogale (Phascogale tapoatafa) A rarely seen inhabitant of dry woodlands. Also known as the Tuan.
Fat-tailed Dunnart (Sminthopsis crassicaudata) nocturnal inhabitant of open habitats in western Victoria. Regularly seen when spotlighting on native grasslands of the northern plains.
Southern Brown Bandicoot (Isoodon obesulus) occasionally seen whilst spotlighting in southern Victoria, particularly in the Little Desert, the Otways and East Gippsland.
Long-nosed Bandicoot (Perameles nasuta) most likely to be observed in East Gippsland where it is a local inhabitant of wet sclerophyll forest
Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) Fairly common in the Otway ranges where sightings can be guaranteed. Also occur widely across southern Victoria with observations in the You Yangs, Strathbogie ranges and the Yarra valley near Melbourne, as well as further east in Gippsland, eg Raymond island.
Common Wombat (Vambatus ursinus) Quite common in wetter grassy areas of eastern Victoria. Nocturnal and regularly seen whilst spotlighting in the mountain and coastal areas east of Melbourne.
Mountain Brushtail Possum or Bobuck (Trichosurus caninus) Occasionally seen in the wetter mountain forests in the eastern half of the state.
Common Brushtail Possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) Widespread and common throughout much of Victoria from urban areas to the inland river systems. Commonly seen wherever large trees are present. Nocturnal.
Yellow-bellied Glider (Petaurus australis) A nocturnal inhabitant of tall wet eucalypt forests in the east of Victoria and the Otway ranges. Often heard in these areas, sometimes seen.
Feathertail Glider (Acrobates pygmaeus) Fairly widespread in Victoria but difficult to observe in the wild. The world’s smallest gliding mammal
Leadbeaters Possum (Gymnobeledeus leadbeateri) An endangered possum from the wet sclerophyll forests north-east of Melbourne.
Greater Glider (Petauroides volans) A nocturnal inhabitant of tall wet eucalypt forests in eastern Victoria. Reliably seen at certain locations to the east of Melbourne.
Sugar Glider (Petaurus breviceps) A nocturnal inhabitant through much of central and southern Victoria. Quite frequently heard, occasionally seen.
Squirrel Glider (Petaurus norfolcensis) Has declined in Victoria and difficult to observe, inhabiting the drier woodlands on the north side of the Great Dividing range.
Long-nosed Potoroo (Potorous tridactylis) Most likely to be seen in the coastal heathy woodlands of East Gippsland. A rare and localised nocturnal fungi eating marsupial.
Common Ringtail Possum (Pseudocheirus peregrinus) A quite common nocturnal inhabitant in southern and eastern Victoria, including in urban areas. Regularly encountered whilst spotlighting in southern Vic.
Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus) Australia’s largest marsupial, occurring regularly in the open plains of Wyperfeld NP, Murray-Sunset NP, and Hattah NP in far north-west Victoria as well as the riverine plains in NSW. Fairly frequently encountered.
Eastern Grey Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) The commonest species of Kangaroo in Victoria, and competes with the Red as Australia’s largest marsupial. Found widely except in the driest parts of the north-west. Crepuscular and nocturnal, but also regularly seen in daytime. Most common in areas with bushland, open areas and available water. Regularly seen. Can occur in large mobs.
Black/Swamp Wallaby (Wallabia bicolor) Quite common and widespread throughout southern and central Victoria. Occurs mostly alone. Occasionally tame. Regularly seen, either at night, or disturbed in daytime.
Western Grey Kangaroo (Macropus fuliginosus) The common Kangaroo in the drier parts of north-western Victoria. The most regularly seen Kangaroo in the mallee district.
Red-necked Wallaby (Macropus Rufogriseus) Occurs most frequently in the Grampians NP, the Otways and East Gippsland. Crepuscular and nocturnal, normally shy, but occasionally in campgrounds.
A number of Bat species occur including the Grey-headed Flying-Fox (Pteropus poliocephalus) The commonest large “flying-fox” of Victoria. Colonies near Melbourne and in Gippsland. Flies across Melbourne at night to feed on fruit and nectar.
Rakali/Water Rat (Hydromys chrysogaster) An inhabitant of permanent waterways inland and on the coast. Previously hunted, fairly common, occasionally seen.
Mitchell’s Hopping Mouse (Notomys mitchellii) present in the dry north-western mallee country where its tracks in the sand are seen much more often that the animal itself.
Bush Rat (Rattus fuscipes) The most common native rat in Victoria found in southern Victoria mostly in dense wet vegetation.
Australian Fur Seal (Arctocephalus pusillus doriferus) Colonies occur on offshore islands, may be seen from land in open ocean.
Common Bottlenose Dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) May occasionally be seen in offshore waters and Port Phillip Bay.
A variety of introduced animals are also regularly seen in Victoria including European Rabbit, European Hare, Red Fox, House Cat, Goat, Sambar Deer, Fallow Deer
Many species occur in Victoria, the following is a list of some that are more frequently encountered or rarer species found at birding sites regularly visited
Snake-necked Turtle (Chelodina longicollis)
Tesselated Gecko (Diplodactylus tesellatus)
Gibber Gecko (Lucasium byrnie)
Marbled Gecko (Christinus marmoratus)
Olive Delma (Legless Lizard) (Delma inornata)
Eastern Hooded Scalyfoot (Pygopus schraderi)
Eastern Striped Skink (Ctenotus robustus)
Short-clawed Ctenotus (Ctenotus brachyonyx)
Eastern Spotted Ctenotus (Ctenotus orientalis)
Cunningham's Skink (Egernia cunninghami)
Tree Skink (Egernia striolata)
Garden Skink (Lampropholis delicata)
Grass Skink (Lampropholis guichanoti)
Shingleback/Stumpy-tail (Tiliqua rugose)
Eastern Blue-Tongue (Tiliqua scincoides)
Western Blue-tongue (Tiliqua occipitalis)
Southern Blue-tongue (Tiliqua nigrolutea)
Jacky Lizard (Amphibolurus muricatus)
Common Nobbi Dragon (Diporiphora nobbi)
Painted Dragon (Ctenophorus pictus)
Mallee Military Dragon (Ctenophorus fordi)
Water Dragon (Intellagama lesuerii)
Eastern Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbata)
Central Bearded Dragon (Pogona vitticeps)
Gould's Goanna (Varanus gouldii)
Lace Monitor (Varanus varius)
Carpet Python (Morelia spilota)
Lowlands Copperhead (Austrelaps superbus)
Tiger Snake (Notechis scutatus)
Red-bellied Black Snake (Pseudechis porphyriachus)
Eastern Brown Snake (Pseudonaja textilis)
Curl Snake (Suta Suta)