Skip to main content

First day in the Wild West Kimberley


Kerry Mazzotti

I woke to in the wild west Kimberly town of Derby. I wandered down to the mudflats to watch the sun peep over the horizon signalling the first official day of Bush Blitz 2022. We were on the way to Charnley River Station, our base camp for a six-day biodiversity survey!

I travelled with Dr Scott and another Bush Blitz teacher in a 4WD, and we started on the Gibb River Road. The Gibb River Road is an unsealed road that is an iconic track through the red dirt and ancient landscapes of the Kimberley region. The landscape is incredible, and we were in awe as we splashed through the water crossings and bumped over the corrugations in the road.

We were greeted at camp by Arachnologists (spider scientists) that were digging out a Tarantula from her burrow right here at base camp. They dug using picks, gloves and specialised tools, trying to ensure they didn’t collapse the burrow or injure the beautiful spider. The scientists worked patiently and tirelessly and eventually scooped out a beautiful female Tarantula.

After the excitement of the Tarantula, we headed over to meet the helicopter pilot and have a safety briefing. The helicopter seats four passengers and will allow the teams to travel further for longer and give us more chances to discover new species!