Saturday, 17 March 2018

... very quick to trot back ...


by Simone McPherson

Over the past week or so we have had a number of Visitors to the house and the surrounds; one of our visitors was the lovely Black Wallaroo – Macropus robustus. 

These beautiful solitary, shy animals are very solid in their appearance with very woolly coats.  The Males are a light black in colour while ...

... the females have a slate blue colour.  They live in the rugged steep terrain, along our rocky hills and ridges and …

… they also enjoy the Eucalyptus woodlands as well as on some of the grass plains here and you will always find them close to watercourses.  As with all Macropus species they are largely nocturnal, they spend most of the day resting in the shade of rocks or even caves and in dense vegetation in this region.

 I have noticed that they then become active again around 3pm in the afternoon moving out into grassy areas to feed throughout the night before resting again around 9am in the morning as they become sleepy once more as the sun begins to rise.

They are also found in close proximity to another Macropus found in this region … the Pretty-faced Wallaby – Macropus parryi – Pretty-faced Wallabies enjoy the same habitat to the Wallaroo’s the only difference being that they are a more sociable animal coming together in mobs of around 8 to 12 that we have observed here and they tend not to be as shy as the Wallaroo’s in nature.


Another visitor that we had was a Lace Monitor – a Goanna – Varanus varius.  We have seen Goannas as large as over a metre and a half or so in length although I am told that they can grow as large as two metres.  These Lizards are all carnivores.  We have sighted them stealing bird’s eggs up trees while all the little birds in the area go into a frenzy trying to protect their offspring.  

They are also a common sight along the road way as they gorging themselves on road kills; I am told that they will also eat other reptiles and small mammals too.  However most of the time we see Goannas quietly resting up trees only coming down to forage. 


The most intriguing thing we have seen with these creatures is that they will lay their eggs in the many termite mounds that are found throughout the property.  The female will dig a hole into the termite mound lay her eggs then leave the termites to reseal the mound – incubating her eggs – then the female will return just before the eggs are ready to hatch and dig them out.  How does she know when to do this?  Your guess is as good as ours one of those amazing mysteries of Nature.

The other day while finishing off the new fence line ...

... with the assembly of gates that needed to be hung ...

... I noticed to my delight another Lizard family - on one of the corner posts this little fellow – he is known as a Long Tailed Earless Dragon - Tympanocryptis tetraporophora.  These small Dragons are no more than 16cms or so long and we usually find them …


… at the Homestead ...

... sun-baking in the rockeries of the garden,  at times I’ve seen them standing back on their hind legs we presume that this behaviour is to gain more heat to their little bodies.

 And it seems that the fence line is already doing it’s intended job – by keeping the cattle in for on our way to hang a couple of gates …


… we found some girls and their babies out and about, however they were very quick to trot back into their paddock and they even knew where the gateway was.

... and now it is home-time again for us both as another day comes to an end ...