Sunday, May 28, 2006

A night out of town

Sorry folks this one is in captivity

Last night we camped at a place called Tumbling Waters. It was just one night but a welcome relief from the drudgery of urban living. It was great to get out of town and stay in such a friendly environment. We hadn't had the tent out for several months and were really happy to be using it again. The landscape out there is beautiful, there are lots of Pandanus and Grevillias and no Gamba grass as far as I could see. There are termite mounds scattered throughout the area and a wide variety of flora supporting the bird populations. We saw a family of Grey Crowned Babblers and some Varied Lorikeets, which always brings a smile to my face. There were a couple of male Raja Shell ducks fighting over a female in the middle of the crocodile enclosure! Wow those guys are determined! As far as I could tell the crocs were too well fed to pay them any mind.

They have a crocodile enclosue where several large freshwater crocs are on display. This may be the only way many people will ever see freshwater crocs if Cane Toads have the impact many people believe they will. I have seen freshies in the wild but imagine they will be harder to find now that Cane Toads have invaded a lot of the great freshwater habitat in the Topend! While canoeing in Katherine Gorge my friend Martin and I happened to see a young croc stalking frogs on the shore at night; there were Cane toads all over the same spot and I doubt the crocodile would have known the difference!

We hope to go back to Tumbling Waters with friends this dry season as it is such an easy place to stay. Next time I will ride my bike and meet the others there. It's about 70km from home so I expect it will take me about 4 hours but how would I know?! I haven't ridden any further than 10km on any one day in the past year or so! Sounds like a suitable challenge!

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