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Tiptoe through the woodlands


Veronica Ross

I am getting use to these early mornings. A quick check of the traps behind the camp revealed 2 quolls, a bandicoot and a legless lizard. Today we were heading to site B10 to work with Kim the botanist. To get to the location we were required to fly by helicopter. What an absolute thrill. I have never been in a helicopter before so have been able to tick that off my bucket list. We flew into a eucalyptus forest and livistona lowlands to conduct plant surveys. There was no real focus but whenever we located a plant that was of interest it was collected. I was interested in seeing the different ways that two different botanists collected samples. Yesterday we collected all the samples and recorded them all in one go where as today as each sample was collected it was recorded and pressed.

Part of today's walking was through a creek bed. The diversity of butter flies, water insects and birdlife was incredible. We sat down for lunch and it was great listening to the sounds around us and not seeing a single piece of rubbish anywhere. The photo of the day is of a Common Crow (Euploea corinna), found through out the tropical areas of Australia. We also located a parasitic worm that prays on invertebrates. It lays in wait in water until an unsuspecting insect comes along and consumes it. It then grows inside the insect and then causes the insect to explode before re-entering the water to wait for another poor soul.