I decided that Cairns Esplanade was a good next bet as it was just around the corner. Unfortunately I arrived to find the tide way out and most birds just distant specks! A park at the north end gave me a good opportunity to familiarise myself with some of the common Aussie species - Masked Plover, Straw-necked Stork, Willie Wagtail, the very odd Magpie-lark plus a small flock of Scaly-breasted Munias. Along the esplanade I did manage 6 Great Knot, Striated Heron, Great White Egret, c6 Australian Pelicans, Far-eastern Curlew, c8 Bar-tailed Godwits, Silver Gulls, Australian Gull-billed Terns and a nice view of an Eastern Osprey while landbirds included Rainbow Lorikeet, Australian Figbird, White-breasted Woodswallow and Common Myna.
Not far away is Cairns Botanical Gardens where I parked up and explored the southern section including Freshwater Lake and Saltwater Lake. Here I picked up my first wildfowl with plenty of Pacific Black Ducks and Magpie Geese. Australian Brush-turkey got me going but only because I had no idea how common they are at that stage! Herons were well-represented and included Striated Heron, Little Egret, Straw-necked Ibis and a nice Great Pied Cormorant. Rainbow Bee-eater was duly ticked and alongside a small group were Leaden Flycatcher and Olive-backed Sunbird. Spangled Drongo, Grey Fantail and Welcome Swallow were the best of the rest before I hit the road up to Kuranda.
Pacific Black Duck
After checking in at Kuranda Rainforest Retreat I went for a short walk around the grounds in the last hour of daylight. By far the best bird was a mega Wompoo Fruit Dove flopping about on the fruits of a palm but I also added Pacific Emerald Dove, the soon to be ubiquitous Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Dusky Honeyeater, Lewin's Honeyeater, Graceful Honeyeater and Grey Fantail before hitting the sack.
Wompoo Fruit Dove