Monday, 30 July 2012

Sunday Drive to Channel Island

Yes, these senior citizens went for another Sunday drive. The purpose is to learn how to use the satnav in the car. I find it difficult.

We drove to Channel Island which is just the other side of East Arm in the harbour. The Love Of My Life used to work at Channel Island years ago. Long story.

This boat is a workplace.
The men on board were wearing highvis shirts
and hard hats.
There is a bridge from the mainland to the island and many people like to fish from the bridge. Of the dozen or so fishermen on th ebridge no-one caught any fish while we were there. 

The water was sparkling and clear. There was a bit of seaweed or algae floating around, but only a bit. We saw some very big jellyfish and some green sea turtles. One turtle would have been about one metre across.  

A little way from the bridge we saw some men working from a boat. Not a bad office!

The view from the workplace.

Strychnine bush is not a very colourful plant.
Fruit on the strychnine bush is ripe.
We strolled along the road on the island to the Conservations Reserve and to the Power Station. No entry. 

The area would probably be described as monsoon vine thicket.

Beside the road we saw some strychnine bush growing.

Orange footed scrub fowl.

We saw some orange footed scrub fowl scratching about and turning over the mulch. Some were frightened and flew into a tree. Scrub fowl prefer to stay on the ground.

You can see that these should not be described as turkeys because of the different tail. Many suburban gardeners get annoyed with these birds because of their digging. It certainly makes a mess, but they are actually performing many useful jobs in city gardens.

Then we drove along to the boat ramp. Lots more people enjoying a few hours of quiet fishing. Plenty of boats. Experts at reversing down the long long ramp.

Photo from CSIRO

As we drove along the bush looked healthy and green. We saw lots of woollybutts and stringybark trees. We saw gazillions of pandanus and plenty of cycads. The pink turkey bush is in flower at present.

See the black trunk, but only at the bottom. This defines the woolly butt tree. They are really common in the bush all around the Top End.

Not my photo.
This picture shows why it is called a stringybark tree. The tree is tall and skinny with quite bright green leaves just at the top.

Not my photo again. This is the species of pandanus we saw. Again it is very common across the entire region.

This is the species of Cycad we saw. This photo is from the CSIRO. The photo illustrates the tree well because it was taken after a bushfire had been through the area. No bushfire evidence where we drove. I am not sure if cycads should be described as trees. They are very ancient plants and really slow growing.

The turkey bush is calytrix. The flowers are usually different shades of pink even into a purple colour. Sometimes you see a white one, really white not pale pink. If you try to cut some and bring it inside this flower does not last. 

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