Wildlife Seen on Your Last Walk?

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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby sthughes » Sun 17 Jan, 2010 10:50 pm

Braked to avoid Echidna, stopped to let very casual Tassie Devil wander off the road. Then once walking performed a remarkably sudden change to reverse when I met a snake head on (looked like a copperhead, but i doubt it, probably a Tiger). It was sunning itself on top of button grass (nearly at waist height and about a foot or two away!) Otherwise the usual wallabies, possums, and lizards by the dozen up Rogoona.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby eggs » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 10:51 am

The "last" walk was the annual treck to Tas over 2 weeks to 3 different areas.
I have already mentioned the Black Swan at Lake Lexie - see Black Swan topic
But there were a couple more unusual sitings -
a lone wombat when descending Mt La Perouse,
a strange growling and bushes crashing just next to us when coming down from Moonlight Flats. Several wild-eyed wallabies appeared and glared intently at us making us think they were either spooked or were sizing us up for a fight. We suspect they may have been making the growling noise and that it was some form of male fighting going on.
we also had a great but short lived siting of a lyre bird from the old tramway track on the way back on the Mystery Cave section.
Last edited by eggs on Mon 18 Jan, 2010 3:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby stu » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 11:00 am

We got 'buzzed' by a lyre bird around that area too eggs, just near the entrance to the cave.
It swooped down just over our heads making a real raquet, so we made a raquet back at it!
As much of a pest as these birds are they are full of character & always make me smile.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby eggs » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 11:28 am

I didn't know they were "pests". My understanding was that they were rare to see in the wild being somewhat secretive.
Ours was just passing by and quickly moved on, but yours may have had a nearby nest I guess?
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby stu » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 2:08 pm

Yep, apparently they are a bit of a pest - very agressive to native birds & they scratch up the forest floor quite dramatically - you see evidence of this quite regularly, particularly when walking the lesser trodden tracks or off track (lots around the Mt Weld approach & in the ascent forest, I think I saw 3 & heard others in that area in 1 day + many, many overturned areas on the forest floor).

Their distribution is now pretty wide-spread across the state, tho I think the Tarkine is still free of them, for the moment.
Initially I think they were only introduced to a couple of areas, Lune River area & Mt Field? (please correct me on any of this info if anyone is more up on this subject).

About 22 of them were introduced in the 1930's through fear of them becomming extinct on the mainland I think.
Their numbers are now estimated at 8000+; I see / hear them quite regularly, especially when walking off track.
The 3 times I have been to Lune River car park I have seen them, I think there is a breeding pair that live there & they are very vocal.

The Kookaburra was also introduced to Tas in about 1906, tho I don't think it is as much of a pest?
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Taurë-rana » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 2:14 pm

I didn't know we had lyrebirds here. I did know about the kookaburras though, I believe they are causing problems to the local reptile populations.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby whynotwalk » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 2:17 pm

Just back from the Central Plateau, where we saw not one but TWO snakes swimming and hunting underwater. The first one was in Silver Lake, and it was clearly on the lookout for trout.

The second was at an un-named lake near Lake Toorah, and it was "hiding" underwater near some large rocks. While we watched it slowly squeezed itself under the mud, then emerge from another spot nearby. You can clearly see the tiger stripes on its flanks. Eventually it came out of the water and slipped into a nice cosy scoparia bush.

I have seen a tiger snake actually swallowing a whole trout. It was at Platypus Bay on Lake St Clair some years ago. I've described that on my blog at http://auntyscuttle.blogspot.com/2007/0 ... -chew.html

My latest postings describe other aspects of this recent walk on the Ada 1:25 000 map sheet.

cheers

Peter

Silver Lake Snake.jpg
Tiger snake on the hunt in Silver Lake
Tiger Snake 2.jpg
Tiger snake underwater - with stripes clearly on show
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby ILUVSWTAS » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 2:32 pm

That snake in the water is just plain wrong!!

Kookaburras are becoming a pest, give them a few years....

And Tr, I dont think Lyrebirds are up North yet, probably why you didnt know we had them here!!
Stu is correct they were introduced at both Lune river and Mt Field, and are spreading FAST!! They dig up the earth with their massive feet and the ground soon dies off.
They were once considered a treat to see Eggs, but these days when walking in the Southwest rarely a trip goes by when one isnt sighted or at least heard!! Last time I was on the southern ranges I saw around a dozen! Even had a few in the trees at cavern camp
Nothing to see here.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby stepbystep » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 3:29 pm

I've seen Lyrebirds at Lune River and Duckhole Lake, but assumed they were native - so there you go, learn something everyday.
BTW 1 devil, 1 wombat and many many birds that I'm not edumacated enuff to describe correctly, around Rhona the other day.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby johnw » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 11:49 pm

1. With the lyrebirds, I think the reason they're so damaging in Tasmania is likley the difference in vegetation to their native habitat. They're forest floor dwellers. Much of that environment in Tassie is sub-alpine rainforest and is more sensitive to damage than similar places on the mainland, having a different understory. The perpetual scratching on the ground is the method of foraging for food. But up here it means they're usually only disturbing leaf litter and the like. It's a shame that they have been introduced there with such consequences. Yet another example of humans interfering with nature to its detriment. Ironically the lyrebird forms the parks service logo in NSW and is a bird sought after by bushwalkers and others, as they're often considered elusive. They do have a lot of character though and occasionally are quite bold. Years ago we actually had one "join" us on a walk. It followed us down a short off track sidetrip to visit the old Gladstone mine adit below the Lindeman Pass in the Blue Mountains, quietly sat on a branch about a metre above us while we ate lunch, then followed us back up to the track. Very unusual behaviour.

2. That said my last wildlife sightings were actually two lyrebirds on Sunday, but on an MTB trail ride rather than a walk. I did a short walk on Saturday and heard a lot of rustling but couldn't see anything. It was very encouraging though on Friday evening while going for a run through (degraded) local bushland just a few minutes from home to disturb two wallabies. That was a pleasant surprise given the adjacent area is quite densely populated and roaming dogs and feral pests are ever present.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Taurë-rana » Mon 18 Jan, 2010 11:58 pm

johnw wrote:It was very encouraging though on Friday evening while going for a run through (degraded) local bushland just a few minutes from home to disturb two wallabies. That was a pleasant surprise given the adjacent area is quite densely populated and roaming dogs and feral pests are ever present.
Different places, different points of view. Wallabies, paddymelons etc are everywhere when I go for a walk in the reserve near my house - if it's near dusk I find it a reassuring sign that no unfriendly people are about. My apple trees, vege garden (when I have one), plum trees etc are all suffering from wallabies and possums. I mowed my back garden a few weeks ago and found a wallaby living in it under a rose bush, and if I go out at night I always disturb the wallabies. This is in town, although on the edge.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Phil » Tue 19 Jan, 2010 7:59 am

While I was running home from work last night I came across a hungry Echidna having his way with some ants. He was on the side of the track (actually on the track) between the suspension bridge at the gorge and duck reach power station in Launceston. I was able to crouch down next to him (literally next to him.....maybe 50cm away) and watch him forage for a few minutes before I went on my way and kept running. It seemed he either he didn't notice I was there or he was too focused on his meal - probably both!
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby stepbystep » Tue 19 Jan, 2010 8:02 am

johnw wrote:Years ago we actually had one "join" us on a walk. It followed us down a short off track sidetrip to visit the old Gladstone mine adit below the Lindeman Pass in the Blue Mountains, quietly sat on a branch about a metre above us while we ate lunch, then followed us back up to the track. Very unusual behaviour.


Cool, I had a Currawong do the same up and then down Mt. Mangana on Bruny - I think he felt ripped off I didn't have lunch(for him) at the top.
The idea of wilderness needs no defense, it only needs defenders ~ Edward Abbey
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Steve » Tue 19 Jan, 2010 9:46 pm

Had a close encounter with a huge tiger snake on top of Mt Pegasus :shock: , and spotted a little one when walking out via the huon track.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby ILUVSWTAS » Wed 20 Jan, 2010 6:03 pm

Yeh we spied 3 or 4 snakes along the Huon track recently!! and one HUGE on one the way out to East Portal
Nothing to see here.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby WarrenH » Thu 21 Jan, 2010 8:33 am

From the Endrick River to Gilbert's Gap and Sassafras Mountain (NSW), just after Christmas, I saw one small Emu, half a dozen Stinkers, several Rednecks, Currawongs, Magies, Chuffs and Willywagtails. I could hear Eastern Whip Birds but I didn't see them.

My second last trip, was to the Boyd Plateau in the SW of the Blue Mountains. I saw several Wedgetail Eagles and I only had a 17-85mm lens. Two shots from the trip.


Image


Image


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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby north-north-west » Thu 21 Jan, 2010 12:31 pm

Heaps, but then I was out off track for almost two weeks in total. Birds large and small, including a couple of supercillious emus; wobblies, 'roos, wombats, echidnas . . . and my tent was pooped on and romped over by a family of gliders during the night I spent at Olsen's.
The 'best' was the very large (and fortunately very well fed and not in the mood for aggro) tiger snake on whose tail I accidentally trod whilst scrub bashing my way along Farm Ridge to Jagungal.

It would be an interesting scientific experiment to determine the average amount of time taken for a person's heartbeat to return to normal after such an incident . . .

Plus, of course, there were the 57,948,639 horseflies who accompanied me on my journeys. Only 36,294,186 survived.
"Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens."
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby tasadam » Thu 21 Jan, 2010 2:44 pm

Kookaburras are pests in Tasmania, as well as the reptiles they also prey on the smaller of Tasmanian birds such as young wrens, Robins and the like.
I've seen Lyre birds near the entrance to Hastings Cave, also along the track from Cockle Creek to South Cape.
Most significant encounter from our last walk was a spotted quoll at Wilson Bight.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby melinda » Thu 21 Jan, 2010 4:07 pm

I think I mentioned 'possums' in another post but I guess this story may be best suited to this thread.
When planning our recent OT trip friends did mention 'possums'.
Now we have possums in NSW, our are refined little critters who only raid tents and flys occasionally.
Where as the possums I met on the OT were experienced campaigners who had obviously perfected their teamwork on innocents from that island to the north of Tassie!
One night I was woken by the scampering of numerous little feet running round and round the tent.
Tried to ignore it, then the action really started. Scratch, scratch,three tears in the tent and a bags of nuts stolen out of the side pockets of one the packs.
When I went out to see what was happening I found three possums having a great old time.
I admit the fault was our own (we left some food in one of the packs instead of in the huts) but....... wow!!!! :shock: :shock: :shock:
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby nothingwmn » Fri 22 Jan, 2010 9:49 am

Here's one... this is not zoomed in at all!
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Beevor » Fri 22 Jan, 2010 10:16 am

On my last walk about 2 weeks ago to Silver and Antimony, we saw 12 snakes; 4 of them Tigers and the rest were whippies. The coolest part was watching a 3ft Tiger sitting next to a scoparia bush, chewing down wayward bees. There was a hive (of sorts) of them in the bush, either that or they were simply all balled-up ready to move on.

Saw a couple more Mountain Katydids too.... and found a pair mating. Rad.

Saw thousands of Jack Jumpers! The descent into Antimony has to have the most Jack Jumper nests I've ever seen. In some parts there was a massive nest every 10 or 15 metres. I'd recommend one of those epi-pen thingos if you're walking in there and you're allergic to them!

Saw some nice Trout too!
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Neil Grose » Fri 22 Jan, 2010 10:43 am

I was fishing the St Pats River in the north east last weekend with a Victorian mate (who is something of a philistine when it comes to enjoying the wilds) when we came across a platypus in full feeding mode.

I've seen them heaps of times on lakes and rivers, but never really seen one feeding so voraciously. It was grubbing things off the gravelly bottom and I swear it even took a few things off the surface.

All my mate was worried about was it putting the fish down :roll: :roll: :roll:

Around the next bend and a pretty damn big tiger snake swam across the river in front of me. It reminded me of the colouration we see at Mt Cameron, plenty of white and not much black.

I guess when you are nut deep in a river, any sort of snake is going to look massive, but I reckon this one was around 4' long. Very impressive creatures indeed.

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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby johnw » Fri 22 Jan, 2010 12:18 pm

scavenger wrote:Plus, of course, there were the 57,948,639 horseflies who accompanied me on my journeys. Only 36,294,186 survived.

Well done! I spent half an hour battling an especially persistent one on Little Twynam a few weeks back, while trying to eat my lunch. And it got a piece of me in the end. Looking the size of that monster, I think it was waiting on clearance for take off and just using me as an amusement to pass the time. I hate those things... :evil:
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby north-north-west » Fri 22 Jan, 2010 12:45 pm

Hate is a mild word for the feelings I harbour for them.
Sometimes I time my breaks by the number I swat. 10 is a short breather, 50 is a longer 'get the heartbeat back to normal after a long climb', and 100 is a decent lunchbreak.
"Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens."
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby juju » Mon 01 Feb, 2010 6:02 pm

I was laid up after a foot injury (had during home maintenance) recently and was treated to a half hour dawn recital by a Lyrebird down in the forest behind our house. I felt quite privileged. I'm sorry to read they are a pest in Tassie.
On a walk in New England we were plagued by bull ants round our dry ridge top camp at night (they weren't there when we set up camp). Someone told me they are nocturnal, coming out at night to forage and only scouts come out during the day or if the nest is disturbed. There was a pile of them hiding under my tent in the morning.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby bushrunner » Sat 20 Mar, 2010 5:32 pm

Thought I might post a couple of images of this little guy I saw on the track beside Lake Salome recently. I was really glad to get such a close look at him, right out in the open.
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby 3rd weekender » Fri 26 Mar, 2010 7:38 am

We were walking between Dundas and Montazuma falls and were suprised by the lack of wild life on the tracks there,however i was in a ladies garden in a coastal town this week and a walaby just hopped through the garden
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Erica » Fri 26 Mar, 2010 9:25 am

saw some whip snakes mating beside the track to Hartnett Falls on the OLT a few years ago, that was pretty cool to see. Didn't get a photo but the American lady I was got a heap of video footage. Although, not quite sure what you'd do with video footage of mating snakes...
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby Taurë-rana » Sun 28 Mar, 2010 8:48 pm

3rd weekender wrote:We were walking between Dundas and Montazuma falls and were suprised by the lack of wild life on the tracks there,however i was in a ladies garden in a coastal town this week and a walaby just hopped through the garden


I have wallabies visit my garden every night, and actually found one living out there when I mowed the lawn a couple of months ago (the lawn had got a bit long). I have to fence my veges, and my apple trees are trimmed at wallaby height (and by the possums :evil:).
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Re: Wildlife seen on your last walk?

Postby north-north-west » Mon 29 Mar, 2010 7:41 pm

The wombats were having a party outside my tent Saturday night. Probably a bunch of drunken juvenile delinquents from the way they were staggering around bumping into things (specifically my tent, trekking pole and cookset . . . )
"Mit der Dummheit kämpfen Götter selbst vergebens."
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