Not sure about the rest of the world, but here in Australia, gander means two things - an adult male goose and to take a look at something. If you're into magpie geese, aka local residents of Bamurru by the tens of thousands, then this is for you ...
In fact our name 'Bamurru' is the indigenous Gagadju word for them. Every year, huge numbers of magpie geese bless our floodplains to build their nests. Most mate for life and the males are in charge of nest building and help to care for their young - giving the female (or goose) a break ! When flying close together they are collectively called a plump.
Recently our lodge manager, John and field guide Alana found a magpie goose suffering nasty wounds on her chest and back. With a little bit of TLC and the chance for our guests to enjoy a hug, the goose was ready to be released back onto the floodplain. We are happy to report that our friend, fondly named Maggie Moo has made a full recovery.
Whether it's wallabies grazing by your bungalow, buffalo mooching about or geese honking by the hundred, you are sure to be inspired at Bamurru Plains !
Even with a late wet season, guests enjoyed some memorable sessions fishing from Bamurru Plains during this last month. Barramundi up to 108cm long were caught fishing the mouth of Sampan Creek which adjoins our property. The fish were concentrated on a large bait school of bony bream wide of the creek mouth. Persistence was the key ingredient for success. Locating and staying with the bait school was critical, with one group of guests managing to land four Barramundi over the magical metre mark in a spirited afternoon session which included many other Barra in the 80 - 95cm range as well.
This season has also allowed Bamurru Plains Lodge Manager, John Cooper, the opportunity to tag and release a large number of Barramundi from the coastal creeks and floodplains fished by our guests. Barramundi ranging in size from 28cm through to 108cm long have been tagged with a Northern Territory Fisheries tag so that upon their recapture information such as growth rate and movements within the system may be recorded. Upon recapture this information will be returned to us so that we may benefit from the knowledge learned from this exercise. The guests at Bamurru Plains were thrilled to be able to contribute to such research and are looking forward to receiving information in the future regarding where their fish of a lifetime has ended up.
Picture: recent guest, Jason Duwakin, proudly displays an 87cm Barramundi with its new tag prior to release.
We can't wait to have Pete in our kitchen on the Pete Evans Food & Fishing Safari at Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef 15 - 19 July 2013.
There are just 2 spots (1 room) left if you want to join Pete in our kitchen on what is set to be a fantastic event. Pete and our chef's will be wooing you with their menu and dishes whilst you sit back, relax and enjoy a chilled Margaret River wine in hand.
Catch, cook and eat fish with the master of seafood.
$4,699 per person twin-share
To book call 1300 790 561 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ningaloo Reef is home to large populations of green, hawksbill and loggerhead turtles, three of the world's seven marine turtle species. The mating and nesting season takes place each year between November and April.
Many have already lumbered up the beach to lay their eggs whilst others are still finding a fellow suitor.
For most species, courtship usually occurs over several weeks before the nesting season. The three turtle species found on Ningaloo Reef have enlarged claws on their front flippers which help them to grasp the shells of the females during mating. Copulation takes place in the water, just offshore.
A few weeks after mating the female comes ashore on a sandy beach to nest.
This female will be doing just that shortly.
Larry was the resident sand monitor who lived at the back of the lodge at Sal Salis.
Sand monitors also known as Gould's monitor, reach up to 1.4 metres in length and can weigh as much as 6kg. They spend all day foraging for food and anything smaller than itself will be eagerly devoured.
Sadly Larry, found himself at the bottom of the food chain yesterday.
A Perentie appeared around the camp, no doubt attracted by the turtle nesting that is taking place at the moment but spotted Larry instead.
The Perentie is the largest monitor lizard or goanna native to Australia, and the fourth largest lizard in the world! They can grow up to 2.5 metres and can weigh as much as 15kg. They eat insects, reptiles (including their own kind), turtle eggs, bird eggs, birds and yesterday, Larry.
The majesty of this magnificent spotted harrier is captured beautifully here.
While the coral reef is literally on your doorstep on one side - home to over 500 species of fish, 250 coral species, manta rays and other marine creatures, with seasonal visits from humpback whales, dolphins and whale sharks. The Cape Range hides deep gorges on the other side. Red kangaroos, wallaroos, rock wallabies and Gould's Goannas are resident in the park. Around 160 species of birds have been recorded in the Cape Range National Park, including Pied Butcherbirds, Fairy Wrens, Kestrels, Zebra Finches, Reef Herons, white-bellied sea-eagles and then there's the occasional Emu that strolls through camp.
Between November and April each year, hundreds of turtles come ashore to nest on the beaches along the Ningaloo coast. Sal Salis guests are often treated to a starlit viewing of the female turtles lumbering up the beach to lay their eggs, privileged witnesses to this remarkable wildlife spectacle.
Two kms behind camp, the limestone rock walls and creek bed of Mandu Mandu Gorge is a great home for the vulnerable Black-footed Rock Wallaby.
Click here for more information on the current Stay 3 Pay 2 offer at Sal Salis. Valid for travel until 31 March 2013.
Jon and Sinead woke up this morning to a private Heli-Beach Safari at Bamurru Plains. It's not everyday one celebrates their honeymoon after all!
The happy couple with Lauren, Bamurru Plains Field Guide and Steve, the resident pilot.
Wildlife viewing by Sampan Creek Estuary
In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks - John Muir
Great Walks of Australia is an inspiring collection of destination-based walks across the country offering journeys that explore Australia's magnificent landscapes, without foregoing the creature comforts.
Seven independently owned and managed walks comprise the founding members of Great Walks of Australia:
We are delighted to be part of Great Walks of Australia which showcases a collection of quintessentailly Australian walking experiences that engage walkers in some of the world's most spectacular terrain. These walks inspire travellers to explore Australia's diverse landscape by foot and reconnect guests with nature in small, intimate groups.
Lonely Planet photographer Richard I'Anson lent his expertise to a group of keen photographers at Arkaba. The 4 day itinerary included 2 nights camping out at one of our luxury swag camps giving quick access to some special sunrise spots. The best light was maximised each dawn before returning for a healthy Arkaba breakfast followed by a group tutorial, a spot of lunch and some one on one feedback, then out getting snap happy again. Kindly the 'students' left us some of their favourite shots ... enjoy !
Bamurru Plains guest Wendy decided it was a great day for an aerial safari over the ancient floodplains and escarpment country of Kakadu. Why ever not ! Taking the R44 helicopter and resident pilot, Steve she scored an inspirational perspective of the area.
The rivers of this part of Australia play host to the largest salt water crocodiles in the world. Spotto Mr Croc !
Crossing the Wildman River into the outskirts of Kakadu