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  • Red-capped Plover

    Red-capped Plover.   Photographer: Mark Lethlean

  • Australian Hobby

    Australian Hobby.   Photographer: Harry Charalambous

  • Great Egret, Intermediate Egret, Pied Heron, Royal Spoonbill

    Great Egret, Intermediate Egret, Pied Heron, Royal Spoonbill.   Photographer: Georgina Steytler

  • Buff-banded Rail

    Buff-banded Rail.   Photographer: Mark Lethlean

  • Spotted Whistling-Duck

    Spotted Whistling-Duck.   Photographer: Michael Schmid

This gallery showcases BirdLife Photography’s very best images of each species; we intend it to become the premier go-to resource for Australian bird images.

In 2014 the BirdLife Photography Committee initiated a review of the structure and function of its digital image library, the on-going repository of Australian bird images submitted by BirdLife Photography members to promote a visual appreciation of our unique birdlife and to provide a digital resource for related educational and conservation purposes.  As a consequence of this review, the Committee decided to initiate a restructure of the image library to meet the evolving needs of BirdLife Photography and its parent organisation, BirdLife Australia.  The restructure commenced in January 2015 and is a continuing process.

The first phase expands the structure of the image library with three additional galleries, one of which is the Premier Bird Images Gallery (PBIG).  The PBIG is a collection of the very best images selected from the Main Library (where most of the images submitted by our members are located) and other galleries (eg. Previous Competition galleries); these images are transferred to the PBIG, which will serve as a showcase for our members' best images, and will encourage their use by BirdLife Australia and third party organisations.

The Selection Process

In 2015 there are two Working Groups appraising the existing images in our library, working through the thousands of images in family groups.  Each WG consists of three experienced photographers; several of these photographers have won national and international awards for their photography.  Whilst the judging of images will always have a subjective component, images are judged by reference to standards such as the Photographic Exhibitions Committee of the Professional Photographers of America.  Images are scored out of a total of 15 points and those images with a score of 14 or 15 are identified for transfer to the PBIG.  A score of 15/15 is judged as excelling in all the key criteria that an individual judge ascribes to an image of the highest quality.  A 14/15 image may have one deficiency in a critical element that removes it from the 15/15 category but still scores the image in the second highest tier.

The Committee has decided that an individual photographer may only have a total of 3 images of a species in the PBIG.  Where a photographer has more than 3 images for any one species, images selected for transfer to the PBIG will be referred back to the appropriate WG for final selection.  In special circumstances, the BirdLife Photography Committee may allow more than 3 but no more than 5 images for an individual species from any one photographer.  Where images with a score of 14 or 15 have been excluded on the basis of the species limit, these images will remain in their original gallery and will be identified by a 'High Quality' flag; you can  search for these images by using the Filter facility in our galleries.

In addition to image quality, PBIG images must meet minimum size requirements.  For images submitted prior to the introduction of our New Images gallery (April 2015), this is set to at least 95% of the previous maximum size limits for image submission (1024 pixels wide, 768 pixels high); for newer images, this is 95% of the current maximum size limits (1400 pixels wide, 1050 pixels high).  Images that have been selected by a Working Group, but excluded for size reasons, will also be identified with a ‘High Quality’ flag, so that they can be readily located using the Filter facility.

Images uploaded to the New Images Gallery since it was launched on 2nd April 2015 (either still located in the New Images Gallery or transferred to the Main Library) have not yet been appraised.  An additional PBIG Working Group is required to undertake this task, and a call for experienced photographers will remain open until the positions are filled and the task is completed; if you would like more details, please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Families Assessed

The table below is an update on the progress of the various Working Groups, showing the families that have been accessed to date.  For some of these families no images have been selected for the PBIG, for other families, only some species are represented in the PBIG.  The BLP Committee encourages its members to regularly review this page for updates to this information and to check which species are present in the PBIG (by using the Filter/Sort capability in that gallery), utilise the resources provided by BLP to enhance your photographic skills and apply those skills to capture high quality images worthy of display in the new gallery structure.  Please note that images cannot be submitted directly to the PBIG; images must be submitted to the New Images Gallery and they will be appraised for selection to the PBIG when transferred to the Main Library and the New Images Working Group is established. Images submitted to photo competition galleries will also be assessed by this WG.

This table uses the families listed in the BirdLife Australia Working List V1.2 taxonomy used on this site.

Family Name Scientific Name Assessed
Ostriches Struthionidae Yes
Emus and Cassowaries Casuariidae Yes
Megapodes Megapodiidae Yes
Guineafowl Numididae Yes
New World Quail Odontophoridae Yes
Pheasants and Quail Phasianidae Yes
Magpie Goose Anseranatidae Yes
Ducks, Geese and Swans Anatidae Yes
Tropicbirds Phaethontidae Yes
Grebes Podicepidae Yes
Flamingoes Phoenicopteridae Yes
Pigeons and Doves Columbidae Yes
Frogmouths Podargidae  
Eared Nightjars Eurostopodidae  
Nightjars Caprimulgidae  
Owlet-nightjars Aegothelidae  
Swifts and Swiftlets Apodidae  
Northern Storm-Petrels Hydrobatidae  
Southern Storm-Petrels Oceanitidae  
Albatrosses Diomedeidae  
Petrels and Shearwaters Procellariidae  
Penguins Spheniscidae  
Frigatebirds Fregatidae  
Boobies Gannets Sulidae  
Darter Anhingidae  
Cormorants and Shags Phalacrocoracidae  
Pelican Pelicanidae  
Storks Ciconiidae  
Herons, Egrets and Bitterns Ardeidae  
Ibis and Spoonbills Threskiornithidae  
Eagles, Kites, Goshawks and Osprey Accipitridae  
Falcons Falconidae  
Cranes Gruidae  
Crakes, Rails and Swamphens Rallidae  
Bustards Otididae  
Sheathbills Chionididae  
Stone-curlews Burhinidae  
Oystercatchers Haematopodidae  
Stilts and Avocets Recurvirostridae  
Plovers, Dotterel and Lapwings Charadriidae  
Plains-wanderer Pedionomidae  
Jacanas Jacanidae  
Painted Snipe Rostratulidae  
Snipe, Sandpipers, Godwits, Curlew, Stints and Phalaropes Scolopacidae  
Button-quail Turnicidae  
Pratincoles Glareolidae  
Skuas and Jaegers Stercorariidae  
Gulls, Terns and Noddies Laridae  
Kakas and Keas Nestoridae  
Cockatoos and Corellas Cacatuidae  
Parrots, Lorikeets and Rosellas Psittacidae  
Parrots, Lorikeets and Rosellas Psittacidaeus  
Cuckoos Cuculidae  
Hawk-Owls Strigidae  
Masked Owls Tytonidae  
Kingfishers Alcedinidae  
Tree Kingfishers Halcyonidae  
Bee-eaters Meropidae  
Dollarbird Coraciidae  
Rollers Coraciidae  
Hoopoes Upupidae  
Pittas Pittidae Yes
Lyrebirds Menuridae Yes
Scrub-birds Atrichornithidae Yes
Treecreepers Climacteridae Yes
Bowerbirds and Catbirds Ptilonorhynchidae Yes
Fairy-wrens, Emu-wrens and Grasswrens Maluridae Yes
Bristlebirds Dasyornithidae Yes
Thornbills and Gerygones Acanthizidae Yes
Pardalotes Pardalotidae Yes
Honeyeaters and Chats Meliphagidae Yes
Australian Babblers Pomatostomidae Yes
Logrunners Orthonychidae Yes
Whipbirds and Wedgebills Psophodidae Yes
Sittellas Neosittidae Yes
Cuckoo-shrikes and Trillers Campephagidae Yes
Whistlers, Shrike-thrushes and allies Pachycephalidae Yes
Orioles and Figbirds Oriolidae  
Woodswallows, Currawongs, Butcherbirds and Magpie Artamidae  
Drongos Dicruridae  
Fantails Rhipiduridae  
Shrikes Laniidae  
Crows and Ravens Corvidae  
Monarch and Flycatchers Monarchidae  
Chough and Apostlebird Corcoracidae  
Birds of Paradise Paradisaeidae  
Australian Robins Petroicidae  
Larks Alaudidae  
Cisticolas Cisticolidae  
Reed-Warblers Acrocephalidae  
Grassbirds Megaluridae  
Yes Babblers Timaliidae  
Leaf Warblers Phylloscopidae  
Swallows and Martins Hirundinidae  
Bulbuls Pycnonotidae  
Old world flycatchers Muscicapidae  
Thrushes Turdidae  
Starlings Sturnidae  
Sunbirds and Flowerpeckers Nectariniidae  
Weaver Finches Estrildidae  
Weaver Finches Passeridae  
Pipits and Wagtails Motacillidae  
Old World Finches Fringillidae  
Buntings Emberizidae  

Recent Picks

Purple-crowned Fairy-wren (Image ID 28729)
Purple-crowned Fairy-wren
Bill Harding
Viewed: 10
Australian Owlet-nightjar (Image ID 28740)
Australian Owlet-nightjar
William Betts
Viewed: 13
Great Egret (Image ID 28722)
Great Egret
Doug Castle
Viewed: 29
Sacred Kingfisher (Image ID 28713)
Sacred Kingfisher
Erica Siegel
Viewed: 32
Yellow White-eye (Image ID 28712)
Yellow White-eye
Bill Harding
Viewed: 26
Yellow Chat (Image ID 28705)
Yellow Chat
Wilson Lennard
Viewed: 42
Little Shrike-thrush (Image ID 28699)
Little Shrike-thrush
Ian Wilson
Viewed: 34
Graceful Honeyeater (Image ID 28690)
Graceful Honeyeater
Ian Wilson
Viewed: 42
Tawny Grassbird (Image ID 28688)
Tawny Grassbird
Gary Dunnett
Viewed: 34
Pale-yellow Robin (Image ID 28683)
Pale-yellow Robin
Ian Wilson
Viewed: 49

CONTACT US

The easiest way to contact us is by emailing us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Our People page, in the About Us section, contains email links to each of the committee members.