Day 152: Rest day - A happy ride around Australia (third attempt) - CycleBlaze

October 27, 2022

Day 152: Rest day

This morning was very windy. We were booked in to do a snorkel with fur seals. Unfortunately on the drive to the beach, the operator called us and cancelled the snorkel as the swell was too big.

We had a lazy brunch and then went to the Raptor Domain Conservation Centre. 

There were no animals in cages on display like at a zoo. They would bring them out individually for interactive shows. I care greatly about animal welfare. These animals were rescues and were well treated.

First we saw the reptile presentation. We were allowed to handle boxes that contained some scary invertebrates. 

Black rock scorpion.
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This Urodacus manicatus is 5cm.

This whistling tarantula can grow to 22cm. It can make a whistling sound if provoked.
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Selenocosmia crassipes. I dont like spiders so I was very brave holding this box.

Flinders scorpion.
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Urodacus elongatus is the largest Australian scorpion. They can grow to 12cm. I used an UV light on it to make it glow.

Tiger snakes are common and can be fatal to humans. They give birth to live young.
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This Notechis scutatus didn't have any stripes.

The eastern brown snake is also very venomous and common and kills about 1 person per year. It lays eggs instead of giving birth to live young.
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Pseudonaja textilis.

This is Steve, the eastern blue tongue lizard.
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Rita McCarthyLooking good, Vince. Obviously being around Serena is helping too. Glad you made the most of your time there despite the weather.
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1 month ago
Daniel Van IngenGreat to see that smile buddy
😁🙏
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1 month ago
Vince McCarthyYes Serena makes me smile.
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1 month ago
Vince McCarthyThanks mate. I felt like a big kid that day.
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1 month ago

Tiliqua scincoides scincoides.

This is Miss Mooch, a shingleback lizard.
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Tiliqua rugosa are monogamous and will grieve if their partner dies.

This is Delta, the eastern bearded dragon.
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Pogona barbata.

This is Syd, a Murray Darling carpet python. I'm not afraid of snakes, although I felt a little nervous holding them.
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Rita McCarthyYes, I know how you feel. The first time I held one of those apparently I held it too tight and it started to wrap around my neck.
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1 month ago

Morelia spilota metcalfei.

This is a Stimson's python. It was fast moving and a little scary.
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Antaresia stimsoni.

It was pretty cool seeing the reptiles. 

After the show and talk of how dangerous snakes can be, I was a little concerned about snake bites as the weather will warm up so I bought a snake bite specific compression bandage to carry on my ride.

We had a wait and then went to the bird show.

This random echidna walked across the path as we went to the bird show.
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This is Wally the tawny frogmouth.
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Podargus strigoides.

This is Chips, an Australian kestrel.
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Falco cenchroides.

This is Boo, the Australian boobook owl.
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Ninox boobook.

This is Tina, an Australian Hobby falcon.
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The scientific name Falco longipennis refers to it's long primary wing feathers.

This is Muriel, the Pacific baza.
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Aviceda subcristata.

This is Snowball, the barn owl.
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Tyto alba.

This is Nelly, a 4.5kg wedged-tailed eagle. I was awestruck.
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Aquila audax.

Their wingspan can be 2.8 metres.
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This is Matilda, a masked owl.
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Tyto novaehollandiae.

There was only a small group of visitors which gave us more opportunity to hold the birds.

All of the birds were untethered except for the wedgy. They would fly amongst us and the nearby trees. 

On the way home we stopped at a gin distillery for a tasting.
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My favourite was called O'Gin.

It was an awesome day.

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Lucy MartinThanks for sharing all the reptiles and birds—terrific!
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1 month ago
Gregory GarceauI had fallen behind on your very interesting journal--that is, until I just got done reading about 30 pages in one sitting. Good stuff.

That sure looked like an amazing hands-on experience with the animals. Your photos of KI's wild animals are great too. Particularly interesting were the ones showing the woolier kangaroos and the white spined echidna. All that uniqueness makes Kangaroo Island kind of like the Galapagos of the eastern hemisphere. Now I want to go there.
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1 month ago
Bill ShaneyfeltNice job on the animal pictures! Loved seeing the lizards and snakes. Back in the late 60s when I was a student at Arizona State, I worked for a year and a half for the Herpetology professor re-tagging about 20 some thousand specimens and entering their data in a single catalog. I spent what little spare time I had out "herping" with my friends. Enjoyed your photos. Interesting how scorps glow under black light. Some of my (richer than me) friends had portable uv lights to hunt them at night.
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1 month ago
Vince McCarthyTo Lucy MartinYou're welcome Lucy.
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1 month ago
Vince McCarthyTo Gregory GarceauIt's definitely a nice and quiet retreat.
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1 month ago
Vince McCarthyTo Bill ShaneyfeltWow, 20,000 specimens is amazing.
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1 month ago
Bill ShaneyfeltTo Vince McCarthyIt took about a year working 4 hours a day. Second best job I ever had! Best was a field research assistant with Eric Pianka while he was a starving student working on his PHD at various remote sites in the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts in CA, AZ and NV, which led to the other job.
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1 month ago
Vince McCarthyIt sounds very interesting.
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1 month ago