The wildlife in the Greg Duggan Nature Reserve in Peterborough, South Australia is quite diverse. Over recent weeks I have been sharing some of the wildflowers I photographed there in September last year. Despite being only 10 acres in size, the fauna is also quite interesting as well. When I visited a small mob of Western Grey Kangaroos was grazing contentedly on the grasses thriving in the park. The female in the photo below looks decidedly like there is a joey in her pouch.
While I didn’t see any other mammals on this visit apart from several rabbits there are sure to be also a few other introduced mammals in this reserve and nearby, including:
- Red Fox (common)
- Brown Hare (common)
- House Mouse (common)
- Black Rat
- Feral House Cat (widespread)
- Goat (present in large numbers further north in the Flinders Ranges)
- Fallow Deer (small feral populations in nearby Jamestown area)
- Western Grey Kangaroo (common)
- Echidna (probably present in this area)
- Several Bat species (common)
- Brushtail Possum (possibly present)
I am no expert in this field but there are many species of reptiles in the wildlife of this area, including:
- Snakes – the common species would be Brown Snakes, but there must be others
- Lizards – many species including Blue-tongues, Stumpy-tailed, geckos, skinks and so on
Again, I am no expert in this field but I have casually observed a variety of
- butterflies (see photo below – I haven’t been able to identify this one)
- many kinds of beetles, bugs and native cockroaches, to name only a few.
This is one area of wildlife where I do have a great deal of knowledge in this area. In all, there are probably well over 150 different species of birds in the region – say, within a 20km radius. Included in this list are a few waterbirds (present in dams and a wetland area near the caravan park), eagles, hawks, pigeons, many species of honeyeaters, chats, babblers, parrots, thornbills, magpies, ravens, woodswallows, finches and the list goes on.
I have included only two photos today (see below). Of special note is the Apostlebird, an uncommon species in South Australia. The township of Peterborough has several large family groups of this species and is one of only a handful of places in the state where they can be reliably seen. The are very common in the eastern states, however.
Today’s photos of wildflowers were all taken in the Greg Duggan Nature Reserve. The small 10 acre park is on the outskirts of Peterborough in the mid north of South Australia. Although it is only small, it is well worth a visit by anyone interested in native plants and birds, especially in the late winter and early spring. All the photos shown here were shot in mid September last year.
The reserve is named after a local council worker who has made a long study of the plants and birds and reptiles in the district. Lists of these can be obtained at the local information centre – a train carriage in the main street (just east of the Town Hall).
Wandering through the reserve is relatively easy through the grassland area and the wooded area in the south where the plants are predominantly native pine (Callitris spp). For those who find it difficult to wander through the scrub there is a well maintained walking track through the reserve, as well as a ramp leading up to the lookout with great views over the town of Peterborough. Watch out also for the excellent interpretive signs at the entrance gate just off Government Road.
For more photos of this reserve, look back over the last few posts and come back over the next few days as I post more.
I have written many articles about this area on this site, so for more information on things to see at Peterborough, use the search button in the top right hand corner.
- Mallee Native Plants – for more information about and photos of Australian Native Plants
The Greg Duggan Nature Reserve is on the northern edge of Peterborough in the mid-north of South Australia. For those visiting the town it is well worth spending a hour or so wandering through this park, especially in late winter and early spring. The photos I feature on today’s post here were all taken in mid-September.
The walking tracks through the reserve are all smooth and well maintained and provide easy walking, as well as wheelchair access. In the centre of the park there is a lookout which has wheelchair access. The lookout has excellent views over the town.
The reserve is named in honour of local council worker Greg Duggan. He is a keen naturalist with a life-long interest in birds and other fauna, as well as local plant species. Some of the plants found in this reserve are rare and endangered.
The reserve is home to a wide range of local flora and fauna, with several species of Native plants found there being extremely rare in South Australia. These plants are Mallee Hop-bush (Dodonaea subglandifulera – Endangered), Two-bristle Greenhood (Pterostylis biseta – one record only) and Ashy-haired Swainson-pea (Swainsona tephrotrich – Rare).
On my visit to the reserve last year I was able to capture a number of photos of the range of plants in flower. Some of these are shown below and others I will post in the coming days.
To learn more about Australian native plants you can access my wife’s site Mallee Native Plants here.
I love a good pinata.
Many years ago in another life I led my students through a study of the country of Mexico. To celebrate the end of that unit of study we made a pinata and filled it with sweets, as tradition dictates. We had a glorious time.
But what is this wonderful pinata doing hanging around in the picnic area of the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Gardens in St Ives in Sydney? On our visit there earlier this year we had just been on a walk along one of the trails when we came across this wonderfully coloured creature just hanging around. Not another person in sight – but we heard them.
All around this pinata were the remnants of a children’s birthday party. Baskets, food, party hats, wrapping paper, drinks and much more – and in the distance we could hear a group of excited children moving through the nearby bush. The local ranger was leading them on a discovery tour of the gardens which I gather is quite a popular event. (Details and bookings here.) They even cater for camp-fires and a spotlight prowl at night. Wonderful.
I have added another photo below. It is a banksia flower which I took nearby. It has nothing to do with the party, the children or the pinata. I just wanted to share it.
If you look back over the last week or so on this site you will see more photos of flowers I took on this visit.
I took this photo of the bark of a scribbly gum during a walk we did in the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Gardens earlier this year. Whenever we visit this park I am fascinated by the intricate patterns on the bark of these trees. They look like someone has taken a pen and scribbled all over the bark on the trunk, hence the name. The trees are quite common in the Sydney region.
The term ‘scribbly gum’ can refer to several species of eucalypt trees, but this one is probably the Eucalyptus haemastoma. The markings are caused by the larval form of the scribbly gum moth tunnelling through the bark.