SOUTH Australia is set for a rush of bird watchers due to a campaign promoting it as an international birdwatching destination.
The SA Tourism Commission has joined Tourism Tasmania to run a campaign until July promoting "unique" birdwatching experiences in a bid to attract international tourists who would usually visit the eastern states.
There are more than 800,000 registered birdwatchers in the UK and tour guides say the hobby is growing in Canada, the US, Germany, Belgium and Sweden.
SATC general manager Rik Morris said a $6100 trip by a staffer to promote SA at the London Wild Bird Watch Consumer Show led to six foreign journalists visiting SA to see the state's birdwatching hotspots, including Cleland Wildlife Park and Warrawong Sanctuary.
Peter Waanders, of Southern Birding Services, said the Adelaide Hills, Flinders Ranges, Riverland and the coast north of Adelaide were top spots for native birds.
Scottish tourist and grandmother of five, Pat Beattie, 64, spent yesterday touring Mt Lofty and parts of the River Murray.
Opposition tourism spokesman David Ridgway questioned the benefit of pursuing birdwatchers when the commission had dropped the ball on on the operation of the visitor information centre.
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