Sunday, 21 April 2013

And now I am back again

We had a lovely few days away at the conference with fine sunny weather, though quite hot.

  This  is the Burdekin bridge, a massive structure which was a lifesaver for the north when it was erected in the 1960s.  for most of the year, the Burdekin river is almost a sand bed, but in the wet season the river can rise to over 40 feet in depth - and this is the main road north!
The ladies were taken on a tour of a heritage centre on the first day.  These photos are of a farm house, typical of the Queenslanders, built in 1921 and moved to this site a few years ago.  The houses were built on stilts to allow the breezes to blow through under the house and keep it cool.

This workers' cottage was built in 1884, typical of its era, with four tiny rooms.  I am glad I did not have to live in it.  The furniture inside was fascinating but unfortunately we were not allowed to take photos.  We saw another house as well, a villa which was built for a very wealthy family.  The contrast of the furniture in the two houses was quite remarkable.

 Lovely reflections on the boats on the Marina which I walked past on the way to catch the ferry to Magnetic Island - about a 20 minute trip.  The locals treat it as a suburb of Townsville, ferries run every half hour
 The ladies were treated to a three hour guided tour of the island , some of us travelling in this wonderful stretched jeep cherokee.  One of our guides is sitting on the side.  He was a mine of information and very entertaining.

There is a large colony of Allied rock wallabies in one of the bays.  they are less than a metre high when fully grown.  The colony is much larger than it should be for the area to support, but somebody has been bringing feed in each day for them.  He had gone to hospital so our guides had a large bundle of guinea grass which they spread out for the wallabies.  They are so tame we could almost touch them.
 If you double click on this photo you should be able to see the joey in the pouch.  There were three koalas in a thicket of eucalypt trees, the female was quite active for that time of the day, but the male below was just lying flat out, trying to get cool.
There is a very healthy colony of koalas on Magnetic Island, introduced from the mainland about a century ago - now it is a refuge.  They are a much paler colour than the southern koalas, and their coat is much thinner to cope with the heat.  It was wonderful to see them in their natural habitat.

I have some more photos but blogger doesn't want to cooperate and it is time to get dinner anyway, so I shall try again tomorrow.
I still haven't had time to check out all my favourite blogs - that is on tomorrow's list too!


  1. It is a pleasure to see those photographs, particularly so as the weather looks so wonderful.

  2. I would love to have been one of those ladies on your trip. So many interesting things to see and so different from life here in the UK. I think I could get quite fond of rock wallabies and that bridge must be a godsend - we think we have problems with rainy seasons!

  3. Looks like an interesting trip, we are cool and damp, finally, have had a fire for the last few nights.

  4. Such fascinating history and wildlife too. Thank you for sharing these photos of your trip.


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