Birds, bandicoots and other signs of wildlife
2007 Victorian trip report #7
During our short visit earlier this year to the Cranbourne Botanic Gardens near Melbourne our primary objective was to look at the native plants and wildflowers. I was also on the lookout for any birds we saw, taking photos wherever possible. We were a little disappointed with the range of plants in flower but still found enough to be of interest. Likewise the bird life, although a little quiet, was still quite good.
As an added bonus we saw some animals as well. We were amused by the sign shown in the photo above as we drove through the entrance gates and on towards the picnic grounds. It brought back memories of a visit to this area many years ago when the gardens were first being established. On one of our walks that day we came across a Southern Brown Bandicoot wandering along the path. This was the first time we had seen this mammal in the wild. We were so excited that we forgot to take any photos of this interesting creature hopping around our feet. I didn’t make the same mistake this time. I actually had to be careful I didn’t drive over the critter as we left the picnic grounds. Lovely.
Lovely little animal! With no foxes (or very few??) they are quite common here in Tassie – some even consider them a pest, for the little holes they dig through peoples gardens. Not quite so common, but still relatively so, is the even more beautiful Eastern Barred Bandicoot – now extinct on the mainland, I believe, though there used to be a small colony at the Hamilton tip, in Western Vic. I do hope they can keep foxes from getting a hold here.
You are so right – I’ve seen a number of them in the Adelaide Hills while out birding so they are quite common despite the presence of foxes, dogs, cats and humans.
My wife has a small native plant nursery and we take plants to a large sale at the show grounds in Adelaide twice a year. It’s run by the Aust Plant Society (APS formerly SGAP) and I usually man the help desk for the weekend (for my computing skills – not plant knowledge). At one recent sale a lady wanted a list of plants suitable to protect the bandicoots in her garden.
I was jealous.
If you are interested my wife’s blog is at