PlatypusWatch

Photo credit – Daniel Blanks

The platypus is an amazing semi-aquatic mammal that is endemic to Eastern Australia and Tasmania. It is primarily nocturnal, living in creeks and rivers from cold highlands areas to tropical rainforests. Unfortunately platypus numbers appear to be declining due to habitat disruption, water extraction, pollution of waterways and illegal capture. 

PlatypusWatch needs your help to learn more about where platypus live and why they are disappearing. PlatypusWatch is a community-based program that engages volunteers in surveying platypus, recording platypus sightings and assessing platypus habitats. This information is used monitor platypus populations and identify what is needed to ensure the protection one of Australia’s most unique species.

If you would like to volunteer for PlatypusWatch, please read the information below and email us at platypus@watergum.org

Latest survey results

August/September 2020


Albert River

2 Platypus

Coomera River

14 Platypus

Currumbin Creek

9 Platypus

Mudgeeraba Creek

8 Platypus

Nerang River

23 Platypus


How to get involved

Join our PlatypusWatch surveys

PlatypusWatch conducts surveys twice a year in Aug/Sep (mating season) and Mar/Apr (babies emerging from the burrows). These are the times of year when platypus are most active so we have a better chance of seeing them.

If you want to sign up as a PlatypusWatch survey volunteer, you will need to first complete an induction which will tell you everything you need to know about platypus and about how to conduct a reliable and successful platypus survey. Induction events are held a month prior to the surveys.

Our regular surveys are fun, social and exciting as you’ll never know what you might see as the sun rises over the water! Enjoy a cuppa or some hot soup after a survey and share stories or photos.

For more info please email: platypus@watergum.org

Report a platypus sighting

Have you seen a platypus in the wild? Great, please let us know by filling out this form. All addresses and locations will be kept private. Your sighting reports to help us to monitor platypus populations.

Platypus online learning

The platypus really is a unique and special species. If you want to learn more about platypus and how we survey them, you can take our online platypus course!

This course also serves as an online version of out PlatypusWatch induction. However, we do prefer do meet you in person prior to your attendance at a survey so we would encourage you to come along to an induction event as well.

Report Card for the financial year 2019/2020
Results Maps

PlatypusWatch has been operating for over 10 years on the Gold Coast! Take a look at our historic results. You’ll see that we are getting higher results each year which may looks like platypus numbers are increasing, but that’s actually not the case. Thanks to an increased interest in platypus our program has grown considerably in recent years and we now have over 450 volunteers in our database! For this reason, we have added many new sites to each survey and so collectively, we record more platypus on our surveys and get more reputable results.

Click on the little box and arrow in the top left hand corner to select which survey round results you want to display.

Platypus Videos

Many of our volunteers send us photos and videos of the platypus they they have seen, both on our surveys and chance sightings. We greatly encourage this! A photo or a video means your sighting can be 100% verified. If you have a photo or a video of a platypus, please email it to us at platypus@watergum.org

Feeding – From Shane and Lee at the Coomera survey, Sept 2020

Scratching – From Daniel at the Nerang survey, Sept 2020

Mating display – From Daniel at the Nerang survey, Sept 2020

Feeding – From Karen at the the Nerang survey, Sept 2020

Feeding – From Charis at the Nerang survey, Aug 2019

Feeding – From Elvira at the Nerang survey, Aug 2019

Mating – From Tarah at the Nerang survey, Aug 2019

Mating – From Steve and Matt at the Mudgeeraba survey, Sept 2018

Hanging out – From Sharon at the Currumbin survey, Sept 2017

This program is supported the City of Gold Coast, Logan City Council and Wildlife Preservation Society of Queensland