Today Leap into Nature visited Woodlands Historic Park in Greenvale. It was totally worth the little bit of extra driving for a sun-filled morning and inspiring session with Conservation Volunteers Threatened Species Manager Travis.
We started with a nice stroll along the track up to the 'Back Paddock' spotting Kangaroos and joeys along the way. We met up with Travis, and he explained to us the plight of the threatened Eastern Barred Bandicoot. A small number of bandicoots were introduced to the park last year, and now their is about 100 bandicoots calling the back paddock conservation reserve home. He told us all about the grassy homes they live in, the insects they eat and how short their gestation period is - just 2 weeks (all of the mums and mums to be were very envious!). As they are nocturnal animals we had to use other methods of finding evidence of these wonderful animals.
So we got down among the Kangaroo Grasses and searched for scratchings and diggings.... we found heaps! Fresh ones and old ones - which was great to know they are very active in the area and finding plenty of food!
Then it was time for exploration, walkabout's, chasing bunnies, butterfly hunting, and a little bit of relaxation time under the beautiful grey box woodlands that surrounded us.
Today was our visit to the Grey-headed Flying-fox colony at Yarra Bend Park in Kew. We started off at the viewing platform where we could see the Flying-fox chatting away, some trying to sleep and others squabbling over prime real estate over-looking the mighty Yarra River. They were a very busy camp today and there was lots to see, smell and listen to!
We then had a little stroll back along the river where we could stand right under the flying-foxes. While Flying-foxes are not a swooping species, I couldn't be so sure they wouldn't poop on us! We were lucky enough to see a Flying-fox fly over and sweep their belly along the water, which is what they do to collect water on their fur which they can later lick off to get a drink.
We then trudged up a hill to set up 'camp' at the edge of the bush. We had a snack and made some finger puppet flying-foxes. But not before long, the kids were running up and down the hill - there was no stopping them, they were off!
It was excellent to have familiar and new faces at our nature club session today plus some early childhood educators too, which keeps me on my toes! It's always nice to hear parents ask 'where is the next session'...... Stay tuned for further details about Woodlands Historic Park during school holidays on TUESDAY 23 September!