Birdsville on the edge of the desert
Birdsville is a small remote township on the northern side of the Queensland and South Australian border.
It sits on the eastern edge of the Simpson Desert and the local countryside is extremely arid.
The township grew out of a small store set up to provision the local cattle pastoralists and pretty much continues to exist with that exact same purpose today.
As with many Australian towns, Birdsville began as a provisioning store at a crossing on the Diamantina River in the 1870s and had the name originally of Diamantina Crossing.
The Diamantina is one of the main rivers of Central Queensland and rises in the Sword Range, south-east of Mount Isa and travels some 900 kilometers before becoming the Warburton River and eventually reaching Lake Eyre in South Australia.
The township sits on the northern end of the famous Birdsville Track. The track is some 517 kilometers in length and runs between Birdsville and the South Australian township of Marree.
Along the way the track passes through the Strzelecki Desert, Sturt Stony Desert and Tirari Desert.
The track was established in the 1860s as a stock route to the railhead at Marree.