|Location of Bladensburg National Park, at the end of the red arrow in central Queensland, just north of the Tropic of Capricorn. It is some 15km south of the town of Winton, via perfectly good two-wheel drive roads, as long as it's dry!The Lark Quarry dinosaur 'stampede' site and museum is in the general vicinity too.|
|Bough Shed Hole camp, among (but never directly under!) River Red Gums, Eucalyptus camaldulensis.|
|Old Bladensburg Homestead, in the midst of a vast and currently dry plain.|
|Mitchell Grass Astrebla spp. plains, very droughted.|
|Cracking soils in the Mitchell Grass prevent tree establishment by breaking rootlets.|
|Spiky hummocks of spinifex, or porcupine grass, Triodia spp, are hardier and less prone to grazing than the Mitchell Grass. Such hummock grasslands comprise nearly a quarter of Australia's land area.|
|Brolgas Grus rubicunda; it often surprises me to find these cranes, essentially wetland birds, in such arid landscapes.|
|male Australian Bustard Ardeotis australia.|
|Black Falcon Falco subniger.This redoubtable hunter is relatively thinly scattered across Australia, and is our second least common falcon.|
|Jump-up capped with Ironwood Wattle Acacia estrophiolata.|
|Spinifex Pigeons Geophaps plumifera are typically associated with spinifex on and around rocky ridges.|
They are one of the most delightful of all pigeons, both in appearance and their whirring runs across the ground.
|Spinifex Pigeons with a friend, a Euro Macropus robustus, which shares their habitat preferences.|
|Red-winged Parrot Aprosmictus erythropterus female inspecting a nest hollow along Surprise Creek.|
|This Spotted Bowerbird Chlamydera maculata hung around camp with an optimistic expression.|
And surely the long-promised posting on bowerbirds must be getting closer!
|Gilbert's Dragon Amphibolurus gilberti.|
Also known as the 'ta ta lizard'; males, like this one, sit up and wave to competitors
to announce that the territory is still occupied.
|Ghost Gum Eucalyptus (Corymbia) aperrerinja, struggling on a stony plateau, but prevailing as this tree always does. |
The wonderful species name is taken from the Pitjantjatjara language of the central deserts
- still very much a living language.
|Desert Bloodwood E. terminalis, a particularly elegant tree which grows right across the central deserts.|
|Sunrise over camp, Bladensburg NP.|