Hay Shire is located on the Riverine Plain in south-western New South Wales and includes portions of the floodplains of the Lachlan and Murrumbidgee Rivers. Contrary to popular belief the 'Hay Plain' supports a diverse range of vegetation communities and these communities contain numerous bird species.
Birds of the Saltbush & Cottonbush Shrublands
This community covers large portions of the shire to the north and south of Hay. The following bird species maybe found with the community: Emu, Stubble Quail, Blue-winged Parrot (non-breeding season, ie April-September), Orange Chat, Richard's Pipit, Brown Songlark.
Birds of the River Red Gum Forests & Woodlands
This community is predominately found along the floodplains associated with the Murrumbidgee and Lachlan Rivers. Small remnant patches of River Red Gum are found scattered across the Shire and are usually associated with old drainage lines that contain water intermittently. This community supports a diverse range of birds including: Bush Stone-curlew, Wedge-tailed Eagle, White-bellied Sea-Eagle, Whistling Kite, Yellow Rosella, Brown Treecreeper, Striated and Spotted Pardalotes, White-plumed and Brown-headed Honeyeaters, Varied Sittella, White-winged Triller and Rufous Songlark.
Birds of the Black Box Woodlands
This community is found on the higher portions of the floodplain, along drainage lines and within wetlands on the plain that only fill following above average rainfall. When these systems fill with water then they may also support large numbers of water birds. Bird species found within this community include: Australian Hobby, Brown Falcon, Peaceful Dove, Australian Ringneck, Red-rumped Parrot, Horsfield's Bronze-Cuckoo, Superb, Variegated and White-winged Fairy-wrens, Western Gerygone, Southern Whiteface, Red-capped Robin, and Pied Butcherbird . Waterbirds may include: Pacific Black Duck, Grey Teal, Australasian Shoveler, White-faced Heron and Black-tailed Native-hen.
Birds of the Boree and Cypress Pine Woodlands
Boree woodlands are restricted to remnant stands in the south–eastern portion of the shire while Cypress Pine woodlands are restricted to sandy rises scattered across the plains. Many of the species found in the other woodland communities may also be found in this community. Additional species may include: Nankeen Kestral, Crested Pigeon, Blue Bonnet, Chestnut-rumped and yellow-rumped Thornbills, Yellow-throated Miner, Ground Cuckoo-shrike, Black-faced Woodswallow and Little Raven.
Birds of the Wetlands
A wide range of wetland types are found within the Hay Shire, including Lignum and River Red Gum wetlands of the Lowbidgee and Reed dominated wetlands within the Great Cumbung Swamp on the Lachlan River. These wetlands support some of the largest breeding colonies of waterbirds within New South Wales. Species recorded within wetlands in the Hay Shire include: Freckled Duck, Blue-billed Duck, Pink-eared Duck, Australasian Bittern, Buff-banded Rail, Spotless Crake, Painted Snipe, Black-winged Stilt, Red-necked Avocet Whiskered and Gull-billed Terns and colonies of Great and Intermediate Egrets, Little Pied Cormorants, Nankeen Night Heron, Straw-necked and Glossy Ibis, Yellow-billed and Royal Spoonbills.