Our first find was an adult Bobtail (Tiliqua rugosa) out sunning itself. It's not uncommon to spot baby bobtails making the best of the sometimes-patchy winter sunshine, but adults are not usually out and about in winter because they take longer to warm up. A cold slow adult is a dead adult if there are predators around. This adult scooted away as quickly as it could, while still appearing nonchalant. We had time to take a few photos before bobbie was under cover.
|Bobtail (Tiliqua rugosa) in the sun|
|Acacia pulchella (commonly called Prickly Moses) in flower|
|A close-up of Acacia pulchella pom-poms|
|Hibbertia subvaginata growing in a small clump (one plant)|
|Close-up of Hibbertia subvaginata flowers and leaves|
The area retains its typical wetland vegetation of Stout Paperbark (Melaleuca preissiana) and Swamp Sheoak (Casuarina obesa) trees, with various sedges and other water-appreciating understorey plants, despite not having had a decent winter's rain in thirty years. It will be interesting to see what it looks like in fifty years' time. The substrate is quick-draining sand, so even after a night of heavy downpours, we would have to get up early to see any water lying on the surface.
|Wetland edge with Stout Paperbarks and Swamp Sheoaks, sedges and Hibbertias|
About a kilometre further into the bushland, we found an area where some of the paperbarks had died. These are the big twisty trees in the centre and right of the photo below; they were Stout Paperbarks (Melaleuca preissiana). The whole patch seemed to be suffering, perhaps from the lack of rain. However, I was heartened to see that Holly-leaved Banksia (Banksia ilicifolia) were growing there, so this may be just a case of natural succession.
|Dead Stout Paperbarks (Melaleuca preissiana) with new growth of Holly-leaved Banksia (Banksia ilicifolia)|
|Swamp Banksia (Banksia littoralis) attracts birds and photographers!|
|Swamp Banksia (Banksia littoralis) in the breeze|
|An unknown (to me) species of sundew (Drosera sp.) growing in sand|
|Fungi fruit, about the size of a golf ball (any mycologists out there want to identify this?)|
|Macrozamia fraseri, a cycad native to Perth|