Wildlife of the Daintree Rainforest

The wildlife that inhabits the Daintree Rainforest is part of what makes Cape Tribulation so special.

The Daintree Rainforest is the oldest tropical rainforest in the world and forms part of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. During our Eco Walks we often come across a wide range of wildlife. Our knowledgeable guides are well versed in the fauna and flora of the Daintree Rainforest and share all sorts of facts and anecdotes during the guided walks.

Below is a list of our favourite wildlife of the Daintree Rainforest:

Ulysses Butterfly

The striking blue of the Ulysses butterfly is an iconic symbol of Tropical North Queensland. Seeing a flash of electric blue wings in the rainforest canopy is always an exciting sight for visitors to Cape Tribulation. We are fortunate to often spot Ulysses butterflies on our Beach Horse Riding tour and our Eco Walks.

Southern Cassowary

Image: Tourism Tropical North Queensland

The cassowary is an iconic animal of the Daintree Rainforest. Reminiscent of the Jurassic period, the flightless cassowary is also the heaviest bird in Australia. With a fearsome reputation, cassowaries are content to forage for fruit along the rainforest ground as long as they don’t feel threatened. Interestingly after mating, it is the male cassowary that looks after the eggs and raises the chicks.

Bennett’s Tree Kangaroo

The Bennett’s Tree Kangaroo is so elusive, we struggled to find a photo of one! Image: via Wikimedia

While the name might suggest that the Bennett’s tree kangaroo is land-dwelling, they are actually arboreal! Yes, that’s right they actually live in the trees. The Bennet’s tree kangaroo is the largest tree-dwelling mammal in Australia and is only found in the rainforest north of the Daintree River. These creatures are really elusive and spotting one in the wild often comes down to sheer luck.

Amethystine Python

While many people have a phobia of snakes, they still play an important role in the rainforest ecosystem. The amethystine python, a type of scrub python, is the largest snake in Australia. In fact, the largest recorded amethystine python measured 8.5 metres! It is not uncommon for these snakes to be found stretched out across the road in Cape Tribulation at night, attracted to the heat coming off the bitumen (so make sure to always drive with care at night).


If you want to explore the Daintree Rainforest then why not join one of our Eco Walks? Our guided rainforest Eco Walks are a great way to gain a deeper understanding of the Daintree Rainforest and have a chance to spot some of the unique wildlife mentioned in this post.