BootsnAll Travel Network

Feb 21st – Birdkids of Alcatraz

Airlie Beach 058

Originally uploaded by roupiesontour

The highlight of today was staying at Lake Maraboon, just outside of Emerald. It’s a beautiful tranquil place full of wildlife. I put out some small bits of bread and before I knew it there were about 30 Lorikeets (little colourful green parrots) surrounding me. The kids saw and rushed back from the pool and soon they were crawling over their shoulders, chests and up their arms. The birds were certainly not afraid of humans. A few cockateels joined the gang and a Kookaburra landed on the roof of the van. He did not seem very impressed with the bread I threw up. It was only later after seeing our next door neighbour feed 3 Kookaburras some sausages that I understood why – they are meat eaters. They sit and quietly watch you, it’s very bizarre but apparently they are looking for snakes all the time so if one looks like it is going to pounce on something close to you then run.

The road to the lake goes over the local dam, water was gushing through from the lake into the river below and Josh asked if they couldn’t switch it off. I asked later and apparently the water can’t be blocked but as there has been so much rain, it flooded Emerald and has not happened for 17 years. It was quite a sight.

If I was coming to Australia again I would spend a lot more time inland as it is unbelievably friendly here and every single person we have met and talked to is a character. I even ended up in a shop for ages talking to the owner who used to make the famous Aussie hats – he spent ages explaining to us all how they made them from the steam etc. I don’t think many people asked him as he seemed really chuffed that we got talking about it. So many shops were flooded but everyone seems to just get on with it. If we had this much rain in the UK the whole country would be on shutdown and it would be months before we were up and running again.

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