Published 18th March 2022. Written by Maddison O’Brien
Every now and then, there are these golden opportunities to get off the beaten track and explore a little bit of wilderness. Coming up on the 23rd of April, Watershed Landcare will be hosting a Biodiversity Bushwalk just outside of Mudgee. The location is one of a kind, its boundary starting at a seasonal creek and stretching high up to hilltops with stunning mature trees and a vast diversity of grass and shrub species. We invite you to come along, stretch your legs, enjoy good company and who knows what we might find!
Just a few weeks ago, I visited Kate and Neil’s place to scope out the site for the event. The property used to be heavily grazed several years ago, but since then, the land has sprung to life, with lots of understorey species and even orchids returning with the help of La Nina rain. Many of the trees are about to blossom, and there are lots of different bird and animal species that call this special place home. Kate & Neil are excited to share the story and vision for the property with the community. The Bushwalk will take place in the morning. We will have morning tea before exploring the creek line and admiring some wonderful examples of regenerating Box Gum Grassy Woodland. The event will be the perfect opportunity to practice your plant ID skills, bird watching and learn from others as we trek up the hill to observe the changes in vegetation with growing elevation. The walk will be a little more challenging than a farm walk, but the views are well worth it – I promise.
It really is a unique place. The landscape bears the marks of past management decisions. Amongst the abundant vegetation, hundreds of ghost trees are scattered all down the hillside; they look very dramatic and have been bleached by the sun. One of the past landowners had spent a lot of time ring barking, and now, as they remain standing, they act as an important form of habitat. Some of the dead trees have hollows in them, and some have fallen over, enriching the soil by capturing water and debris as it flows down the hill.
As we finished up our walk and were saying our goodbyes, taking in the views for the last time that day, I glanced up at one of the dead trees and there, perfectly camouflaged, and as still as a stone, a beautiful mature goanna was basking in the Autumn sunshine.
Make sure to book your spot for the Biodiversity Bushwalk. There are limited spaces available. Click Here for more info.