Eyes on Nature

Curious wildlife in the urban centre

25 Jul 2022

Kookaburras should obviously not drink coffee, frogs don’t need a parking space and magpies don’t need to understand how CCTV works, but we welcome their presence and curiosity in our urban environment nonetheless! 

Wildlife can be rather inquisitive when it comes to human made environments. The Park offers important habitat for over 250 species of wildlife within the parklands, however, those adventurous species that explore a bit further, discover what we refer to as the Sydney Olympic Park town centre. This area offers food and shelter to people, but some wildlife species are exploring what opportunities may exist for them. 

Did you know that for the past three years the roof of Accor Stadium has served as a nesting site for Peregrine Falcons? This raptor usually nests in cliff faces, yet there is clearly something about the roof of Accor Stadium that is attractive to this species. For sport fans, it may be valued as the best seat in the house to view the latest match, but for the Peregrine Falcon it is an opportunity to nest. 

There are resources for urban tolerant species everywhere: the street trees of Sarah Durack Avenue have been supporting large populations of parrots, particularly Rainbow, Musk and Scaly-breasted Lorikeets. The fig trees of Olympic Boulevard produce fruit that is eaten by Flying-foxes. Masked Lapwings feed on insects in the turf of Cathy Freeman Park, and tiny Jumping Spiders clean up insects trapped on Boomerang Tower.

Although there are opportunities for some species of wildlife in urban areas, there are also many risks that can place an animal in harm’s way, such as collision with windows or cars. If you feel that the wildlife you spot in the urban centre are in harm’s way, it is important to call SOPA Park Rangers on 0408 864 798 as they can assist with relocating wildlife to a safer place.  

To help make urban habitats safer for curious and opportunistic wildlife, do not feed animals, make sure to always place your rubbish in the bin and always keep dogs on a lead. Urban spaces can do a lot more to cater for visiting wildlife, and by following these few simple rules, we can make a start.  


Kookaburra ordering coffee
Perons Tree Frog getting a parking ticket
Magpie inspecting CCTV      

Kookaburra ordering coffee

Peron’s Tree Frog getting a parking ticket Magpie inspecting CCTV

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