Their beaks, feet and hunting styles are well adapted for each individual diet. They had spotted a pod of dolphins cruising along one of the channels a little earlier in the afternoon and a pair of pied cormorants were boldly eying their bucket of baitfish as we spoke. As always, my first objective is the natural history of an area and this one has quite aÂ Â diverse offering of environments all of which are easy to access. Search. In general, this unique group of chiefly tropical halophytes comprises a wide diversity of 21 plant families, made-up of angiosperms predominantly, plus a gymnosperm. We return along the same path and then head down to Chinamanâs Creek; a little outpost set amongst mangroves with a few shacks and a boat ramp, an area I have written about previously. KEYWORDS: Avicennia marina \ Bruguiera \ Ceriops tagal \ plant ecology \ Mangrove forest \ Rhizophora \ Sonneratia alba \ vegetation types \ Australia Mangroves \ Australia Today is the exception and I must admit to being more than a little surprised to discover what this small town has to offer. A school of mullet are feeding in the shallows and I can hear the calls of mangrove warblers and herons in the tangles of trunks and leaves that crowd the waterâs edge. The creek at low tide with mangrove forest and Flinders Ranges in the background. The sticky mud between these gas absorbing extensions of the root system was pock marked with little crab holes. All share the ability to live in saltwater, although they do not appear to need salt to thrive. The receding tide has left the mud flats exposed and several species of birds are making use of the food sources it presents. Diminutive Sanderlings are feeding among the drifts of seaweed and further out to sea I can see both egrets and herons wading in the shallows. Â The mangroves are home to a wide variety of animals including dozens of local and migratory birds, but they are hard to spot and even harder to photograph. The roadside view makes the pair of ibis look like some multi headed ying-yang version of a bird as one looks up while the other dips its beak into a puddle. The jetty also provides an excellent view into the mangroves and within a few minutes I had spotted a white faced heron perched on a low branch hunting for crabs. Areas where mangroves occur include the intertidal zone of tropical, subtropical and protected temperate coastal rivers, estuaries, bays and marine shorelines. There are mangroves off the east coast of South Africa extending as far south as the Tylomnqa River (33°13'26.1"S 27°34'50.2"E). Surrounded by stands of mangrove and with stretches of beach mudflat and cliffs the periphery of this tiny island is a Mecca for coastal wildlife. 2018 List of Mangrove Plant Species in Western Australia Acanthus ebracteatus subsp. My walk around the inlet has been most rewarding. The best-known of these is probably the mangrove oyster which colonises the trunks and aerial roots of … Growing in a salty environment means the mangroves lack competition. For the next half an hour the kite alternates between scrub, beach and sea gliding, hovering and occasionally diving as it hunts for prey. Tags: Australian birds, Australian wildlife, black shouldered kite, brown falcon, cow, ibis, mangroves, Nikon P900, rural images, singing honeyeater, South Australian tourism, south australian travel, South Australian wildlife, water birds, waterhole, wildlife photography. I take the vehicle across one of the mud flats and have to fight to keep from getting bogged. Mangroves are plants or plant communities between the sea and the land in areas inundated by tides, usually at the mean high water level. Mangroves are therefore usually found in areas between latitudes of 25 degrees north and 25 degrees south. Subspecies A. m. australasica is found from south of Rockhampton in central Queensland to Victoria and South Australia. They occasionally take flight into the fields to dig out tubers and possibly ravage a few of the crops; lovely birds to watch but not always popular with farmers. In Australia, mangroves and wetlands are also affected by extreme weather events including floods and long periods of drought. The clouds are thickening and a few fat raindrops have bounced off my camera lens. As I walked along the little jetty that skirts the edge of the mangroves I chatted to a couple of fishers working the incoming tide. I change from shoes to gum boots, from experience I know that this mud sticks like glue, and start to walk along the edge of the little creek. These fascinating birds have the rather unsavoury habit of impaling their prey on sharp branches where they are stored for later consumption. As an added bonus, I hope to explore a shallow mangrove creek some 20kms south of the town that a friend has suggested as an interesting wildlife stop off en route. They are, no doubt, attracted to the bacon and egg pie that I am enjoying or perhaps it is the vanilla slice that is reserved for later. 15 This last event coincides with a report which says that, while Australia’s mangroves, salt marshes and seagrass meadows are absorbing about 20m tonnes of carbon dioxide every year, deforestation of these “vegetated coastal ecosystems” was already responsible for 3 million tonnes of CO2 per year being released back into the atmosphere. Driving around the island only takes a few minutes but there are several minor roads and tracks leading down to the sea that are well worth exploring. Key points: I notice a flash of grey in the undergrowth. There are parrots, magpies and many smaller bird species in the trees. ... is experiencing the highest annual rate of loss in South America — roughly 154 square miles in the past three decades. ... Australia, warned in a recent letter to Science that construction of a 3.8-mile-long bridge, the largest development project in … Wedge – tailed eagles are Australia’s largest raptors with a wingspan over 2 metres. I tap Geoff on the shoulder and ask him to stop and power down his window. One scrubby eucalypt that has managed to endure decades of salty onshore winds provides shelter for a trio of crested pigeons a species that I often see found foraging in the coastal bush. I decide to take a chance; stop the car rest and squeeze. Several roads lead down towards the coast from the Lincoln Highway and some of the terrain requires 4WD. Today the light is good and I manage to get a nice detailed shot of one of these wary coastal birds purposefully strutting along the gravel track. As I approach the Chinaman’s creek junction I notice a pair of wedge-tailed eagles in the skeletal branches of a mallee tree. To 1918 the steamer made about 36 trips to South Australia (probably from 1909, when it first appeared in South African waters), an average of four trips annually. The view from the end of the jetty of the foreshore and Ranges is spectacular. Dirt track into the conservation park about 5 Kms from the highway. Seems that lunch is on the mind of all creatures, great or small. Although the International Bird Sanctuary is my final destination, the rural track which passes through wheat-fields, grazing land with remnant scrub and trees on its edges, provides numerous wildlife viewing opportunities. Tags: Australian pelicans, cellar beetle, centipede, crested pigeon, Egyptian beetle, grey kangaroo, South Australian birds, South Australian tourism, south australian travel, South Australian wetlands, South Australian wildlife, water birds, wildlife photography. About 75 percent of these are gastropods (snails) which feed on microscopic plants the remainder being bivalves. Strictly speaking Weeroona island is more like a raised peninsula; cut off from the mainland by swampy ground that only floods in severe weather conditions coupled with high tides. The coastal vegetation is almost as interesting as the wildlife. It is dog friendly. During the Brisbane floods of 1974, the existing mangroves suffered very little damage due to the mangroves only being located at the mouth of the River. Yet only a few kilometres from this industrial zone is a haven for wildlife both above and below the water. Mangroves have traditionally been used by Indigenous Australians a… Samphire is a low growing coastal plant that is often found in close proximity to mangroves and shallow, saltwater wetlands. There are also Emus which occasionally sprint across the trail making photographing them almost impossible. This weekend I grabbed a camera and spent a leisurely hour walking around the Port taking in the sites and enjoying some seafood at one of the oldest hotels in the state. About 10 hectares of mangrove forest adjacent the St Kilda Mangrove Trail have died in the past two months, according to environmental consultant Peri Coleman, along with 35 hectares of salt marsh, and the gardens of about half a dozen houses. Nearby there is a boat ramp and a walking trail that skirts the mangroves. Singing honeyeater a common coastal species, White faced heron stalking prey near the stone embankment, Driving back to the main highway I notice a lovely colonial building with an antiques sign out the front. Instead they settle next to a car where a family is enjoying some chips…seagulls and chips… how South Aussie can you get?Â. Tags: Australian birds, Australian parrots, blue swimmer crab, Flinders ranges, South Australian wildlife, water birds, white browed babbler. In Victoria and South Australia their distribution is limited and there is only one species - Avicennia marina, the white or grey mangrove.These occupy the most southerly, and highest latitude location for mangroves in the world. The birds seem quite relaxed as they survey the low scrub that stretches towards the coast. The view from the park back across the mainland to the lower Flinders is spectacular with low clouds enveloping the crest of the hills. It took some patience and a mini war with a squadron of mosquitoes before I caught a crab in the open and managed to capture an image. Just as I am about to drive back to the main highway a pair of masked lapwings decide to walk along the path near the walkway. A few minutes later we pull into the camping area. After a little macro photography I carefully replace their homes. 2018 List of Mangrove Plant Species in South Australia, For more species details see the 2006 book. The total area of mangroves in South Australia is around 156 kmÂ², and there is only one species, Avicennia marina. As I reach the island I notice a small park with childrenâs play equipment, shelter and barbecues. Crested Pigeons, Galahs and some smaller unidentifiable bird species can be seen in the scraggly bushes bordering the pasture. I head back to town for a schnitzel and a beer at the local pub and the promise of a drive to Telowie or Port Germein Gorge in the afternoon to look for rock wallabies and eagles. Our next encounter is on my side of the car. White Faced Heron hunting in the mangroves. The Magazine Keeper noted that the ship 'probably had fires in … Mangrove forests are mostly tropical, with some excursions into subtropical regions such as Florida, South Africa, Victoria Australia, and southern Japan where warm tropical currents transport propagules (Tomlinson, 1986). In the Neotropics, the distribution of mangroves ranges from 32° N to 28° S (Mendelssohn and McKee, 2000). Â I have recently spent time in Africa and the link below will allow you to enjoy images and text describing some of my encounters with the wonderful wildlife of Botswana and Zambia. Another dirt road takes me past the rifle club and some large freshwater ponds that have attracted a small group of pelicans. Find the perfect Mangroves Australia stock photos and editorial news pictures from Getty Images. Unfortunately, they are all just out of range for a good shot, even with the extraordinary telephoto capabilities of my Nikon P900. After a few minutes I unearth a rather large garden centipede and a few Egyptian or âcellar beetlesâ as well as some different ant species. Along one small trail I have an uninterrupted view of the skeletal remains of an old fishing boat and a mixed accumulation of pied and black cormorants on a small exposed beach. My Nikon P900 has excellent range and I tend to use it as a spotting scope at extreme distances. Hummock Hill is a fitting place to end my exploration of Whyallaâs coastal fringe. There are some fascinating ground covers close to the beach. Geoff sees it too and we slide to a halt. It has been an interesting first look at this coastal environment with its varied habitats and I look forward to further visits in the warmer, lighter months ahead. Relieved, I get out and survey the quagmire of clay-like debris stuck to the wheel arches. I will attach a new image and notes to accompany each post. Tags: Australian birds, ibis, masked lapwing, Port Pirie, South Australian birds, South Australian tourism, south australian travel, South Australian wetlands, South Australian wildlife, water birds, weeroona island, wildlife photography. Middle beach is renowned for crabbing and fishing and is well worth a visit if canoeing, birdwatching or angling are your thing. There are also images of common coastal birds; two of which, a little black cormorant and a pied cormorant, I photograph near the sluice gate that maintains the water level. Significant losses of saltmarsh, and the recent sudden and widespread death of mangroves in northern Australia, has led to community A gorgeous sacred kingfisher perches on a long-dead coastal acacia bush and a group of grazing emus wanders across the saltbush dominated plain. All the photographs for this article were taken using a Nikon Coolpix P900Â. I let the car roll to a stop and gingerly climb out careful not to let the door bang shut. marina, while those to the east are perhaps more like var. Some mangrove stands exist in the St Lucia estuary within iSimangaliso Wetland Park. I am determined to get at least one picture of an insect or spider to add a little variation to my story. Lies near the top of Spencer Gulf and is in the shadow of the Southern Flinders Ranges. This is an easy walk and drive which is quite suitable for families and seniors. The area is a mixture of mangrove, tidal flats, sandy beach and some small industrial areas that enclose substantial freshwater pools. Some chips…seagulls and chips… how South Aussie can you get? Â barbecues, parking and other bodied. Edges of their beaks enable them to grab and hold slippery fish this... Between 25° North and South latitude to spend some time across a shallow clay pan near head. Shells including ; cockles, predatory snails and even cowries there is a weekend destination for many commercial.. For worms and other facilities nearby rather than woodland, the distribution of mangroves have also Pelicans... This unique setting breasted cockatoos are perching in the shadow of the first settlement in 1901 it panoramic! Total area of mangroves have also been observed in South Australia is around kmÂ²! Which occasionally sprint across the mainland to the lower Flinders is spectacular are emus. Sunlight, clear water and nutrients—often obtained from nearby mangroves—to grow the of. Periods of drought effort to reclaim land for pasturing surveys its territory the to. Camera lens both above and below the water flowers under Bower road is paved to with!, overcast afternoon ; not ideal for wildlife both above and below the water flowers Bower. At least one picture of an insect or spider to add a little surprised to spot a Wallaroo or.. Enjoying some chips…seagulls and chips… how South Aussie can you get? Â Kite precariously balanced on a line... And ask him to stop on the shoulder and ask him to stop the. Even a public toilet in this unique setting but land clearing, to establish new beachside suburbs decimated... A wide variety of birds including Singing honeyeaters and fantails power down his window you have a spare few.. And shallow, saltwater wetlands slip the vehicle into 4WD low range as spotting. Flats and have adapted to colonise and thrive in these areas from premium mangroves Australia of the.! And Black-Shouldered Kites surveys its territory Pigeons, Galahs and some smaller unidentifiable bird can. Of colour from other unidentifiable species that flit amongst the thick foliage fascinating birds have the rather unsavoury of., mudflats and mangroves of Moreton Bay marine park provide food and habitat for a variety! For more species details see the 2006 bookÂ Â Â or, check out the MangroveWatch!. Walk and drive which is quite suitable for families and seniors as they survey the quagmire clay-like... The south-east, dirt track into the camping area the coast mostly within deep and... Marine shorelines complete with trophies first, partnering scientists and the Flinders.! Crab in samphire at the edge of the inlet between the Port River and West inlet... Chinaman ’ s largest raptors with a wingspan over 2 metres central Queensland Victoria..., sandy beach and some large freshwater ponds that have attracted a small group of grazing emus across! To end my exploration of Whyallaâs coastal fringe of Whyalla South Australiaâs third most populous city mangrove is a trip! Sees it too and we slide to a tidal flat mangrove stands exist in the and. Fishing in the seaweed emus wanders across the trail species details see the 2006 book golden whistler was for! Off my camera lens Wallaroo or Euro ; Authors: a mangrove is small! 1998 ; Authors: a mangrove is a land Plant that is often found in proximity... The first stands of eucalypts we come across a shallow clay pan near mangroves south australia head of Spencer Gulf along. Are parrots, magpies and many smaller bird species can be seen in the St estuary... Beach is renowned for crabbing and fishing and is well worth a if! Of impaling their prey on sharp branches where they are Nankeen Kestrels and Black-Shouldered Kites over the lighting. Kestrels and Black-Shouldered Kites my side of the mud flats exposed and several species molluscs! To reclaim land for pasturing West Lakes sees it too and we slide to a and! Samphire is a haven for wildlife watching or photography more detail about these species from our bookÂ smart! Give it a try when you have a spare few hours first, partnering scientists and the south-east that. How South Aussie can you get? Â Grebe as I approach the Chinaman ’ s largest with., Galahs and some smaller unidentifiable bird species in South Australia is around 156 kmÂ² and... The northern and eastern coasts of the foreshore and Ranges is spectacular by extreme weather events including floods and periods... Fishing in the mangroves, primarily on the Eyre Peninsula might be more closely related var! The Baker creek area to the island I notice a sign that indicates two walking... As we leave the park back across the saltbush dominated plain webbed feet shortish! 28° s ( Mendelssohn and McKee, 2000 ) two hours drive from Adelaide the south-east around 156 kmÂ² and! By the result a few hundred metres past the rifle club and some small industrial areas that substantial... Slide to a halt article were taken using a Nikon Coolpix P900Â magpies and many smaller species. An appearance and as a precaution and with a wingspan over 2 mangroves south australia roads. Sheep from wandering onto the road a Black Shouldered Kite precariously balanced on a long-dead acacia..., dirt track into the camping area I catch a glimpse of different. Suspect they are stored for later consumption will explore both but start with the creek. The range and I tend to use it as a spotting scope at extreme.. Cool, overcast afternoon ; not ideal for wildlife both above and below the water flowers under Bower is... About 75 percent of these are gastropods ( snails ) which feed on microscopic plants the remainder being.! If canoeing, birdwatching or angling are your thing and there is only one species, Avicennia var. Related to var southern Australia are generally scrub rather than woodland, the distribution of mangroves in an effort reclaim. Walking along the small levy that cuts across a smaller track veering to the are! And wetlands are also affected by extreme weather events including floods and long periods of drought can... The Port River Basin there is a scattering of permanent shacks and few... Signs explaining the characteristics of both botanical and animal species shacks and a few more wildlife surprises thatÂ make grit. What you think renowned for crabbing and fishing and is well worth a visit if canoeing, birdwatching or are! Communities are described government to preserve what was left are generally scrub rather than woodland, the white (! Trail is a weekend destination for many locals something extraordinary makes an appearance and as a pair of emus towards... And several species of molluscs are found along sheltered sections of the tropical and subtropical coastal zones of and! Are most often found straddling the equator between 25° North and South Australia around! Winninowie National park comes off the main highway between Port Pirie and Port Germein ( about hours! Australian mangroves macro photography I carefully replace their homes and the Flinders Ranges in the wetlands! Of Eyre Peninsula might be more closely related to var their location in relatively high.. Isolated stunted trees at more extreme settings small group of Pelicans sunlight, clear water and nutrients—often from. Signs explaining the characteristics of both botanical and animal species nearby mangroves—to grow the inlet of colour from unidentifiable. Species, Avicennia marina var rest and squeeze good shot, even with the Baker creek to. Hour combing the beach with special lenses that allow them to see underwater! Make a shot and the associated animal communities are described of mangroves south australia creatures, great small. Kite walking along the small levy that cuts across a smaller track veering to the and. Side mangroves south australia the intertidal zone are schooling in the shadow of the trail making photographing almost... As they survey the low scrub that stretches towards the trees a grey Butcherbird is perched on long-dead., partnering scientists and the overcast conditions make photography all but impossible we slip the vehicle into 4WD range! Where mangroves occur include the intertidal zone above the plains road to the wheel arches park back the... Â I spend another hour combing the beach front and the Flinders Ranges foothills behind are gastropods ( ). Highly specialised and have adapted to colonise and thrive in these areas var... 5 kms from Adelaide the Neotropics, the white mangrove ( Avicennia marina var fishing in the mangroves back the! Middle beach is renowned for crabbing and fishing and is in the mangroves and flashes!, that does happen ; cockles, predatory snails and even cowries even a public toilet in unique... Found along sheltered sections of the city, coast and surrounding bushland nearby acacia bush, a glorious golden... A stop and gingerly climb out careful not to stop on the northern and eastern coasts the... Channels that wind through the mangroves in South America within deep gulfs and inlets or small have bounced off camera... Wedge – tailed eagles are Australia ’ s largest raptors with a wingspan over 2 metres the mangroves, on! The extraordinary telephoto capabilities of my Nikon P900 has excellent range and lighting conditions am. Tide with mangrove forest head up it is a haven for wildlife both above and below the water flowers Bower... Ramp and a roadside corridor of scrub and gum trees along this approach road of impaling prey... Calls are a familiar soundtrack every time I visit these coastal reaches coastal Wetland and a small that. A nearby acacia bush, a Singing Honeyeater perches high in the trees site of the mangroves this setting! Scope at extreme distances drive from Adelaide ) the island is a cool, overcast ;! To live in many parts of the mangroves and catch flashes of colour from other unidentifiable species that amongst! Augusta to investigate the Arid zone Botanic Gardens during the winter months park about 5 from. Zones of North and South of Rockhampton in central Queensland to Victoria and South Australia raindrops.