Following a week of wet and windy weather, the evening of Saturday 16 May was fine and clear and provided perfect conditions for a night ramble at Mt Rothwell.

Mt Rothwell property is 450 hectares of land formerly owned by a member of the Chirnside family and contains woodland, granite outcrops and remnant native grassland. It is surrounded by predator-proof fencing which provides a safe haven for the native animals

The Friends’ group met our Volunteer Guide for the evening, John Holman at the Biodiversity Interpretation Centre.

Group arrive at centre

We accompanied him as he fed rabbit portions to captive Spot-tailed and Eastern Quolls in their breeding enclosures. Another enclosure was home to Feathertail Gliders who were given nectar, fruit and mealworms.

Spot-tailed Quoll

Spot-tailed quoll devouring rabbit portion

We enjoyed a picnic tea after which John gave us a short talk about Mt Rothwell. He explained the importance of maintaining the fence and this is checked everyday to make sure there are no breaches which might allow foxes or cats to enter the sanctuary. Other priorities include dealing with long term environmental concerns including rabbit eradication, removal of Serrated Tussock and restoration through affiliation with Landcare.

After dark we started our walk.

Night walk

Setting off for night walk

One of our first sightings was an Eastern Quoll. 

Eastern Quoll

Eastern Quoll

Sightings of animals

During the walk we saw the following animals:

Eastern Barred Bandicoots

Eastern Barred Bandicoots

Common Brushtail Possums

Common Brushtail Possums

Southern Brown Bandicoots

Southern Brown Bandicoots

Rufous Bettongs

Rufous Bettongs

Brush-tailed Rock Wallabies

Brush-tailed Rock Wallabies

Eastern-barred Bandicoots and Brush-tailed Rock Wallabies are critically endangered in Victoria and their populations at Mt Rothwell are crucial to the survival of these species.

We found the night walk very informative and the frequent sightings of rare native marsupials gave us a glimpse into the past and what the landscape may have resembled before the land was cleared for pasture with the introduction of sheep and cattle as well as feral predators such as cats and foxes.

We thanked John for his volunteer guiding before leaving the Centre and making our way home.



Our thanks to Jacqui Young, Reserve Officer for her support in organising the event, and to Di Trewenack and Graham Lee for their great photographs.

 Kaye Traynor

Events Calendar


Wed 10:00am - 11:00am

Ten ways to get involved


There are lots of different ways that you can get involved in protecting habitats, conserving biodiversity and enhancing the natural beauty of the area around Anglesea and Aireys Inlet. Learn more

Get involved and support us

Sign up for membership

ANGAIR membership gives you access to a range of great activities and benefits. Learn more about all these benefits as well as how to sign up and renew.

Sign Up

Get to know your local Friends groups

There are a number of wonderful local Friends Groups that provide ANGAIR members and the community with opportunities for involvement.

Find a local group

Go to top