LUKE PATERSON Wednesday 20 May 10am BST

Birding in the Northern Territory, Australia

Luke has a celebrated reputation as one of Australia’s leading specialist bird guides and is the owner/operator of the multi-award winning outfit NT Bird Specialists: Birding & Photographic Safaris. After fledging a Diploma in Natural Resource Management, Luke flew the coop to Western Australia, as a Warden at the Broome Bird Observatory in the magnificent Roebuck Bay, a major feeding and resting ground for migratory shorebirds on the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. Luke rapidly developed his sharp shorebird identification skills and began bird guiding between mudflat sampling, banding and bushbird surveys.

Luke’s birding HQ is now the tropical urban birder’s paradise of Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory in Australia and currently one of the safest birding destinations in the world. Darwin is reached by Singapore in 4 hours and is the jumping off point for birding northern Australia. Luke passionately shares 20 years of local knowledge and birding expertise to find guests unique and endemic target species in Australia’s remote outback Northern Territory (Kakadu, Katherine, Alice Springs), outback Queensland, Western Australia (Kimberley Region) and internationally in Sri Lanka.

Luke has spent countless hours exploring and sharing the bush with others has only made his passion for birds and wildlife grow stronger. His dedication, excellence in customer satisfaction and service has been widely recognised, receiving 3 state tourism awards, multiple local tourism awards and 2 national Australian Tourism Award finalists, setting the standard for sustainable birding and photography tours in northern Australia.

Luke’s knowledge of these natural and cultural environments is immense and he provides so much more than ‘just a birding tour’. Having successfully led so many people, Luke is highly adaptable with exceptional delivery to suit everyone’s needs; whether it be world birders or beginners; photographers on target species mission; ecotourism development services; ecological surveys, birding events or film crew ground-handling and fixing.

No matter the task, Luke is commended for his professionalism, reliability and great company in the field and admired for his incredible birding skills with acute hearing and sight, earning him a reputation for having ‘hawk-eyes’. Luke first met David Lindo in 2016 when guiding his film crew to showcase the urban birding opportunities of Darwin and Australia’s ‘Top End’ (see links below).

At the heart of it all, Luke is a top-notch birder with a keen interest in photography. He loves a challenge and will not give up looking for birds easily, including for his favourite birds including Gouldian Finch, Red Goshawk and White-throated Grasswren, some of the rarest and remote species in Australia.

In this In Conservation With… Luke will be sharing incredible insights to birding Australia’s Northern Territory and Kimberley regions and showcasing the unique birding and landscape highlights in his images taken whilst on tour and backyard birding highlights that kicked off 2020.