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Rockhampton, Qld

Mon 16 Aug 1999

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We left the Yeppoon coast to make some progress towards Brisbane.

Driving through Rockhampton, we followed a sign to the Rockhampton Botanic Garden which someone on the road had recommended as worth a visit.

It has the reputation as the best provincial Botanic Garden in the southern hemisphere and this might well be so.

It is extensive, very beautiful, well laid out and labelled, and includes a small zoo (sadly not world's best practice but the Lace Monitor was very handsome) and a large lagoon.

Only last night we had watched David Attenborough on television talking about the fishing techniques of birds. One sequence showed a flock of pelicans in a tight group hunting a school of fish. Well, we can confirm that this is a universal technique for pelicans for we watched a flock doing just this on the lagoon.

photo of honeyeaters We had lunch in the shade of an enormous Banyan tree and were entertained by Blue-faced Honeyeaters and Noisy Miners vying with one another to be the most intrepid getting food from our jam pots.

Another fellow traveller had given us directions to a bush camping area at the Woolwash Fauna Sanctuary just outside Rockhampton.

This is a quite ordinary looking place with much hidden charm. It consists, simply, of wide grass verges on either side of a kilometre (5 furlongs) of a minor road which passes by a lagoon which has trees along its bank.

There is room for hundreds of motorhomes and caravans which it sometimes gets. On this occasion, we were quite alone. Our first truly solo bush camp.

The lagoon is very pretty and is home to lots of birds. I sighted 14 species including a flock of Double-barred Finches which were feeding around the Motley in the morning.

Our night was disturbed only by coal trains rumbling by in the distance.

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Created by Robin Chalmers on 18.08.1999 and last revised 18.08.1999